MasterCard Worldwide, an American multinational financial services corporation, has ranked Kenya among the countries most ready to use mobile payments in its latest survey report.
The report, dubbed MasterCard Mobile Payments Readiness Index (MPRI), unveiled yesterday, identified Singapore as the most prepared with 45.6 overall score, Canada 42 and United States at 41.5. Kenya was fourth with an overall score of 40.4.
Other African countries surveyed included South Africa with overall score of 29.1, Egypt and Nigeria with 30.2 and 31.3 overall scores in that order.
According to the MPRI report, while it is in early stages for mobile payments adoption, all markets globally – either highly scaled and integrated ones like the United Kingdom or compact and technology-driven ones like Singapore – are making progress towards reaching an inflection point where mobile devices account for an appreciable share of the payments mix.
MPRI analyzed the countries’ readiness to use three types of mobile payments including person to person, mobile web commerce and mobile contactless payments at the point of sale.
MasterCard Worldwide said it found that while no two markets are similar, consumer readiness is the critical success factor to drive mobile payments adoption around the globe.
MPRI study also revealed that young affluent consumers between the ages of 18 and 34 years old are the most willing to engage in mobile payments as they recognize the value of using mobile payments instead of cash or payment cards.
The report further stated that partnerships among the key players such as financial institutions, telcos, governments, technology providers and others, in the mobile payments ecosystem are essential for accelerating the commercialization of mobile payments.
“Technology infrastructure, a responsive regulatory environment and a robust economy are table stakes for the advancement of mobile payments,” said Theodore Iacobuzio, vice president, Global Insights, MasterCard Worldwide.
“The necessary conditions are consumer readiness and industry integration. As no one entity can develop and promote mobile payments by itself, key players in the ecosystem must work together to collectively advance the cause of mobile payments,” he added.
MasterCard Global Insights compiled the research findings between October 2011 and February 2012.
The Index that examined 34 global markets ranked each market on a scale of 1 to 100. The scores were derived from an algorithm comprised of over 50 quantitative and qualitative inputs including economic, demographic, telecommunications and payments industry data as well as proprietary consumer research.