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Fintech start-up joins SA’s growing virtual card space

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Local fintech start-up SOLmate has introduced a virtual card offering, which it hopes will empower customers to access the digital economy and transact online.

Established in 2018, SOLmate is an online payment platform that offers clients a digital wallet facility. The virtual card offering coincides with its rebranding exercise from SOL Wallet to SOLmate.

Considered a “more secure” online payment option, virtual cards have grown in popularity in SA, with First National Bank, Standard Bank and Capitec introducing their virtual bank card offerings for individual and business customers. In June, mobile operator Telkom also launched a Mastercard virtual card for use on WhatsApp.

In a statement, SOLmate says the new virtual card provides clients with the ability to “shop online safely”, and draw cash from various retail stores.

In addition, the fintech firm claims the new offering makes it one of the first fintech players to offer a virtual card to ‘FICA lite’ customers who would otherwise not have had access to digital financial services.

“SOLmate aims to build a digital community platform for South African consumers that allows safe custody of money and a convenient payment platform, along with access to other financial and lifestyle products, services and rewards.

“SOLmate will offer an entry-level product, created for lower income individuals with limited access to financial services, and in the coming months, will introduce a traditional bank account for unbanked consumers looking for a convenient, easy-to-use alternative.”

With accounts starting from R15 per month, SOLmate says users can deposit their salary into their account to transact and purchase basic products and services through the app.

Jonathan Holden, COO of SOLmate, comments: “This rename and new virtual card offering represent a significant step in the company’s evolution. The positioning perfectly illustrates our growing ambition in the market and how we aim to always put our customers first above all else.

“The SOLmate name is rooted in the company’s commitment to being the preferred choice and trusted partner to our customers. We pride ourselves on our relationships with clients and our ability to help, support and connect people to their money quickly and easily.”

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