LatAm: Mexico’s retailers jump onto mobile payments

Mexico is on the brink of a payments revolution. Earlier this year, Samsung Pay launched in the market, Santander partnered with smartwatch brands for contactless payments, and BBVA Bancomer is working with major supermarkets to upgrade to contactless-enabled terminals. With no contactless cards, it seems that Mexico plans to leapfrog straight to mobile payments and retailers are set to follow suit.

The latest retailers on-board with the mobile payments system are Walmart and Mercado Pago - both launching their mobile payment solutions in November. Walmart’s new mobile wallet app, Cashi, can be used to pay for in-store purchases, bill payments and services such as Spotify and Uber and customers won’t need to have a card registered on the app, instead they can deposit cash direct into the wallet at a till. The app can be used at any Walmart, Superama and Sam’s Club in Mexico.

Mercado Pago, a subsidiary of the e-commerce giant Mercado Libre, has taken a different approach, relying instead on its existing apps to allow in-store mobile payments. Merchants accepting payments via Mercado Pago will be able to generate a QR code, which customers can then scan in their Mercado Libre app, and pay using their account balance or the card attached to their account.

Although emerging payments in Mexico are at the initial stages, RFi Group data indicates that 62% of consumers find the concept of mobile wallets highly appealing (8+/10), demonstrating the appetite in the market. This appeal rises to 76% amongst those who believe they understand the technology, underlining the importance of educating consumers about emerging payment methods.

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