Pakistan (Muhammad Yasir)
Karandaaz Pakistan and foodpanda Pakistan recently signed an agreement which aimed to increase financial inclusion in the country by facilitating the onboarding of customers, who are habitual users of the Cash on Delivery (COD) option while ordering through the foodpanda app, to digital payment options like mobile wallets, RAAST ID and debit or credit cards.
The Covid-19 pandemic sped up the move towards digitalisation, and countries with better digital payment systems did better during the crisis than those that were slower to adopt digital technologies. During and post lockdown, online platforms, like foodpanda, experienced a hike in demand as they were able to provide day to day necessities to consumers and digital payments proved to be a lifeline to both them and users.
Sharjeel Murtaza, Director Digital Financial Services (DFS) Karandaaz, discussed the program saying, “Karandaaz Digital is committed to promoting financial inclusion and enhancing the adoption of digital payments in Pakistan. We believe that partnering with non-financial institutions is critical for achieving this objective. The strategic partnership with foodpanda, an established player in the food and grocery delivery space, is a very exciting development. Our primary objective is to convert foodpanda users, who currently opt for Cash on Delivery, to digital payment methods. We also aim to leverage foodpanda’s outreach for increasing demand side awareness around the advantages of being banked and adopting digital payments. We believe this partnership will result in digitization of payments, new accounts acquisition and also open up formal avenues for access to finance for the SME segment.”
Talking about the significance of the plan being set in motion with the partnership, Waqas ul Hasan, CEO Karandaaz, said, “This partnership with foodpanda is an important step in Karandaaz’s drive to pave the way for a digital tomorrow. A significant preference for cash on delivery (COD) has persisted in Pakistan for a variety of reasons. Though, it is worth noting that the Karandaaz Financial Inclusion Survey (K-FIS) released earlier this year shows a sharp increase in the level of trust in mobile money services (increase from 39% to 82%) and mobile money agents (increase from 37% to 77%) between 2013-2022. The digital industry must further capitalize on and maintain this trust level by ensuring robust consumer protection, grievance redressal and fraud detection and prevention mechanisms. The partnership Karandaaz is signing with foodpanda will demonstrate how COD customers can be successfully transitioned to full digital users.’’
CEO foodpanda, Muntaqa Peracha, said “We are excited to announce our partnership with Karandaaz to promote financial inclusion in Pakistan through online payments. At foodpanda, we are committed to bringing convenience to our customers, and increasing our online channels is a key part of this mission. This partnership will enable us to grow the overall consumption portfolio of online channels in Pakistan, contributing to the development of the digital economy and reducing cash dependency across the board. We aim to leverage Karandaaz’s position as a key player in financial inclusion initiatives to drive greater adoption of digital payments and financial services, ultimately helping build a more inclusive economy.”