MasterCard plans big role in Qatar, to bring in digital wallet

February 26, 2014 - 12:28:29 am

BY MOHAMMAD SHOEB

DOHA: With the recent acquisition of C-SAM Inc, a leading provider of mobile wallet and on-device software and services, MasterCard is now seeking to play a significant role in transforming Qatar into the world’s most smart country. 

MasterCard is planning to introduce wearable devices, like Google Glass, lapel pen, or bracelets, to revolutionise the concept of a mobile payment system ‘digital wallet’ in the world, including Qatar, according to a senior official of MasterCard. 

MasterCard, which is one of the world’s leading digital payment facilitator, is in negotiation with authorities in the country, including Qatar Foundation (QF) and Qatar National Bank (QNB), to expand its business with a diversified investment portfolio, which also include establishing strategic partnerships for research and development to advance the mobile payment system. 

“MasterCard is well positioned to play a leading role in Qatar’s journey from a hydrocarbons-based economy to a knowledge-based society,” said Robert W Reeg (pictured), President, Global Technology & Operations at MasterCard. 

Reeg, while speaking with The Peninsula, said:  “Given the number of smartphone users and Internet penetration, we see great opportunity of investments. I am really excited to expand our operations in Qatar as it has high acceptance and value attached to technology.”

On the issue of security of mobile payment transactions, he said: “Safety and security are important elements for individuals while choosing a mode of payment. We are giving special focus on the issue.”

“The acquisition of C-SAM is really going to help MasterCard advance its whole digital valet initiatives. Because we believe safety and security of any payment transactions is the prime concern of every individual. At MasterCard, we are striving to provide our customers the right wallet that can mimic the usability of their physical wallet , on a more secured basis; this is the golden objective we want to achieve,” he said.

On the first day of the ongoing ‘Mobile World Congress’ at Barcelona, MasterCard announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire C-SAM. With the services of C-SAM, MasterCard aims at speeding the development and deployment of mobile wallets and payment solutions globally, including the rollout of its MasterPass digital service.

On issues such as ‘credit card cloning’ and online payment related problems, he said: “Over the last couple of years we have established a dedicated division which focuses solely on safety and security. That is why people use the services of MasterCard which provides the most secured way to make payments.”

He also said: “We have tools that provide customers the ability to control or shut down an unauthorised transaction. For example, a smartphone can do a multiple biometrics checks such as retina scan, finger print scan and voice scan to give people the assurance that it’s only me who is doing the transactions.”

According to Reeg, as part of its expansion plan, MasterCard is going to grow its team in Doha seven to up to 30 people with in few months.   

“We have already taken a half-floor office, and by this June our Doha office will service as our regional hub to serve our clients and customers,” he said. 

The Peninsula

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