February 19, 2024Blockchain

Boom Debuts Blockchain-Powered Payment Platform for Unbanked Consumers in Africa

Boom launched an online payment gateway that allows merchants to collect payments from 2 billion unbanked consumers across Africa.

The debut of the platform, Boom Pay, marks a step toward financial inclusion for populations that have been excluded from global markets due to a lack of access to traditional banking systems, the blockchain-based ecosystem said in a Monday (Feb. 19) press release.

“Boom Pay is more than just a payment solution; it is a step toward achieving socio-economic inclusivity for all,” Boom Chief Product Officer Naomi Bourgarel said in the release. “We have made it extremely simple for everyone to adopt it, and now, we call upon the world to join us on our mission.”

Boom Pay enables know-your-customer-verified consumers to make digital payments to online merchants, according to the release.

Boom’s super app, which provides an inclusive eCommerce platform, allows users to buy and sell online without the need for a bank account, the release said. By funding their wallets with cash through authorized Boomcoin resellers, users can on-ramp into cryptocurrency, further expanding their economic opportunities.

By enabling online merchants to accept user payments through the Boom Pay SDK, Boom Pay addresses the challenges faced by underserved populations and merchants looking to tap into emerging markets, according to the release.

Using blockchain technology allows Boom Pay to offer “advantages such as immediate revenue growth, instant payment settlements, reduced transaction fees and enhanced security,” the release said.

Sub-Saharan Africa has demonstrated the adoption of cryptocurrency for retail transactions. Chainalysis found in 2022 that transactions valued under $1,000 accounted for 80% of all crypto activity in the region by the number of transactions.

Cryptocurrency use has exploded in emerging markets in the past few years, helped by the swaths of unbanked and underserved consumers and strong smartphone penetration across those markets, Farzam Ehsani, CEO at FinTech firm VALR, told PYMNTS in an interview posted in April 2022.

Cryptocurrency helps to get value across borders at a fraction of the price and at a fraction of the time that it takes to get there in traditional systems,” Ehsani said