Visa Inc., a global payment company, announced its intention to open an office in Côte d’Ivoire to reinforce its position as a leading payment technology company and to help bring the benefits of electronic payments to the economy and a broader range of consumers and merchants across West Africa. The company is currently in the process of finalising the procedures leading to the opening of its office that will facilitate engagement with key stakeholders in the region, including the government, financial institutions, consumers and merchants in the ECOWAS region.
This development will help drive the company’s strategy in Africa where 2 billion people live without access to financial services, according to the Global Financial Inclusion Index 2014. The expansion signals efforts by Visa to drive its undertaking with the World Bank Group to achieve universal financial access and provide electronic payment accounts to 500 million underserved people by end of 2020.
“Our presence in Côte d’Ivoire reflects the growing importance of the UEMOA region, which represents 40 per cent of the collective GDP of the economy of West African states. It showcases our commitment and enthusiasm to help the Francophone African markets as they migrate from cash to digital payments by providing consumers across various socio-economic groups with secure, convenient and reliable payment options,” said Tarek Elhousseiny, General Manager, North and Francophone Africa, Visa.
“The decision to have a permanent presence in Côte d’Ivoire will enable Visa to better serve its partner banks and focus efforts on projects that would help accelerate financial inclusion in Francophone West Africa. We have collaborated with 47 governments to provide more than 5,000 products and solutions to help financial inclusion efforts globally. These products and services enable governments to reach more people and enhance the quality of services offered to them,” said Ismahill Diaby, West Africa Manager, Visa.