Tap-On-Phone Technology
Banks Fintech Middle East & Africa Paytech

Mastercard Signs MENA Region’s First Tap-on-Phone Agreement with Geidea

Global technology company Mastercard, and Saudi Arabia-based fintech company Geidea, have recently announced a strategic partnership agreement to accept Mastercard payments on Tap-on-Phone solution in Saudi Arabia – the first agreement of its kind to be signed in the MENA region.

Tap-on-Phone is an innovative, intuitive, and cost-effective app-based solution that allows small businesses to quickly embrace electronic acceptance through their smart mobile or tablet device. With smartphone penetration of more than 70% in the Kingdom, Tap-on-Phone has the potential to reach over 300,000 small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and merchants in the first year of operation alone.

Geidea is the first fintech company to roll out this contactless payment acceptance technology across the Kingdom, which will enable businesses to use smartphones as payment acceptance devices.

Abdullah Al-Othman, Founder and Chairman, Geidea
Abdullah Al-Othman, Founder and Chairman, Geidea

“The Covid-19 pandemic has forced a shift in consumer behaviour towards digital and contactless payment channels, making it imperative for businesses to adapt and shift to a more online-based model. We are therefore proud to partner with Mastercard and provide businesses with a relevant solution that offers the ability to accept safe, secure, and seamless contactless payments through Tap-on-Phone technology,” said Abdullah Al-Othman, the Founder and Chairman of Geidea.

At present, the Geidea network provides best-in-class payment and e-commerce solutions to more than 100,000 merchants – covering 600,000 payment terminals and ATMs within the Kingdom.

As one of the many use cases, Tap-on-Phone enables more SMEs to accept secure card payments on delivery, in lieu of cash-on-delivery (COD) which is often the only on-delivery payment option. According to Bain.com, around 62% of MENA online shoppers choose COD as the payment method when buying online; compared with less than 5% in the UK and France. Cash conversion is key to developing the payment landscape and improve the consumer experience.

“Enabling small businesses to sustain themselves and realise opportunities during and post the pandemic is of paramount importance to us. Through our partnership with Geidea, we can help small businesses expand their ability to accept digital payments and grow their earning potential,” said J.K. Khalil, Country Manager, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain & Levant, Mastercard. “The solution will also help Saudi Arabia to transition safely into a secure digital payment ecosystem, without the risks associated with a large cash pool. In this respect, we are proud to jointly make a significant stride to Saudi Vision 2030’s objective to increase digital transactions in the country. We will continue to leverage our network, insights, and technology to help inform and adapt their operations as we begin to enter a normalisation phase.”

Tap-on-Phone makes it easier for SMEs to use their compatible smartphones to accept quick, easy, and secure, payments from their customers for goods or services. It saves businesses money and time, because all they need to receive electronic payments is an NFC-enabled Android device on version 7.0 or newer.

Geidea also recently became the only non-bank institution in Saudi Arabia to be granted an acquiring license from Saudi Central Bank (SAMA). The license enables Geidea to process secure, fast, and seamless end-to-end payment solutions directly to merchants.


  • Tyler is a fintech journalist with specific interests in online banking and emerging AI technologies. He began his career writing with a plethora of national and international publications.

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