Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Mobilink encourages others to follow its lead in m-commerce

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LAHORE: Having pioneered m-commerce in Pakistan, Mobilink shared its learning at the 2nd International Conference on Mobile Banking to encourage other players in the banking and telecom to follow its lead. Addressing the gathering Aniqa Afzal Sandhu, Head of M-Commerce, Mobilink shared, "With 50 percent cellular penetration and only 11 percent banking penetration, Pakistan is ripe and ready for m-commerce.

We at Mobilink know this better than anyone else as we are the first and foremost to venture in the mobile commerce space through products such as Mobilink Genie and the Mobile Money Order Service, both first of its kind m-commerce initiatives in Pakistan."

She said that due to low spread of banking infrastructure there is a huge untapped market. Currently Rs 0.9 trillion reside outside the banking industry and are transacted through informal channels. However, the relatively high penetration rate of cellular services offers a lucrative opportunity for all stakeholders to benefit from services offered through mobile commerce, she added.

M-commerce, a young but rapidly growing segment, is already providing glimpses into what will certainly become a major means of day to day commerce for billions of consumers and enterprises world-wide. In the developing countries the practice largely has been operator centric because there is a gap between bank/financial service infrastructure and cellular service availability/penetration, with cellular footprint surpassing banks significantly. Though the Cellular and banking customers are the natural target segment of such revolutionary services, the greater beneficiaries would be the untapped segment that neither has a cell phone nor a bank account.

This segment will be a major driver for adoption of wireless technologies and services. Bilal Munir Sheikh, Vice President Marketing, Mobilink and Wasif Mustafa, Director VAS, IR, LDI and Market Development also participated in the conference attended by various local and international stakeholders.

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