Irish fintech firm Fexco has partnered with local big four bank Nedbank to enable global visitors in SA to pay in their home currencies.
The announcement comes after an Irish delegation last week visited SA looking to forge ICT deals with South African organisations.
The trade mission was organised by Enterprise Ireland, the Irish government’s trade and innovation agency.
Led by Heather Humphreys, Ireland’s minister for business, enterprise and innovation, the mission visited SA and Kenya as part of the Irish government’s efforts to increase exports in line with its trade strategy.
Irish fintech Fexco, an independent global provider of dynamic currency conversion (DCC) and multi-currency technologies, announced the partnership that will see Fexco’s DCC solution provided to Nedbank merchants and their international customers throughout SA.
The DCC technology allows international cardholders to pay for products in their home currency.
The solution will also be deployed across more than 4 000 Nedbank ATMs, giving international customers full visibility on the costs of withdrawing money from Nedbank ATMs.
“The DCC software makes it more convenient for international tourists to pay for goods in South Africa, but it also offers a sense of comfort from knowing exactly how much they have paid in their home currency,” says Mpho Sadiki, executive of card and payments acceptance at Nedbank.
According to Enterprise Ireland, Irish fintech firms have been active in SA for years, with an increasing number targeting growth in the country.
It points out that success has been built on shared attitudes to innovation and the potential of both the Irish and South African markets to develop as significant fintech hubs.
During the visit, Humphreys was joined by 42 Enterprise Ireland-supported companies in the agritech, digital technologies, education, life sciences, construction and fintech sectors.
The aim of the trade mission was to highlight the significance of SA as a strategic hub for Africa and to raise awareness of Ireland as a source of leading products, services and technologies.
The trade mission began in Johannesburg on 10 November and finished on 13 November in Cape Town, before moving to Nairobi, Kenya.
Fred Klinkenberg, head of Enterprise Ireland SA, says: “South Africa is the top destination for fintech start-up activity on the continent and home to 40% of the continent’s fintech start-ups.
“East Africa follows closely in second, especially for trying out new fintech ideas and products. The continent’s low penetration rates for traditional banking services, coupled with high penetration of mobile phones, make it a fertile breeding ground for fintech innovation. In many respects, the continent has been ahead of other developing and even developed markets.”
Enterprise Ireland has over 200 SME clients operating in the sector, including start-ups, scaling and large companies.
Their combined sales top the €1 billion mark annually, with exports to over 100 countries worldwide. Ireland is, in fact, the fourth largest exporter of financial services in the world, says Enterprise Ireland.
“We invest in the most innovative Irish companies through all stages of their growth and connect them to international customers across multiple industries,” says Klinkenberg.
“Our goal is to build successful, long-term business relationships between international companies and Irish partners. As one of the world’s largest seed capital investors, we help develop a pipeline of cutting-edge Irish companies and we provide our international partners with a gateway to Irish innovation.”