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Saying mobile payments are blowing up in Africa is starting to get tired, but they really are. Stellenbosch-based startup Gust Pay just announced that it is now out of beta and ready to shake up South Africa’s mobile payment game.
The company, which just recently won best South African startup at Seedstars World, launched a new version of its mobile payment app for smartphones last week.
The latest version of Gust Pay is available for free on both iOS and Android devices. The new release includes a big set of changes: cleaner and simpler user interface, improved registration process, a new back-end with multi-currency support, easy Wi-Fi profile installation, secure credit card linking and quick account top up.
“Launching the new Gust Pay app was a crucial step in getting our payment system ready for the summer season of music events,” says Joe Botha, co-founder of Gust Pay. “Our credit card features greatly improve the convenience of using Gust Pay at events. The new smartphone app complements our NFC wristband technology which offers ticketing, access control, brand activation opportunities and a great user experience.”
The Wi-Fi geo-fenced payments startup burst into beta last year in select Stellenbosch coffee shops. The company says it sees geo-fencing as a virtual perimeter for a real-world geographic area. Within this virtual perimeter is a WiFi network. What this means that payments can only be between a patron and a merchant who are on the same network.
Gust comes to the market as real player on a continent where mobile is the most often the only way to connect and engage as well do business. Though many mobile players have popped up here and there, nothing has really dominated the market in South Africa.
“Our strategy is to integrate retail payments, event payments, in-shop WiFi, location services, loyalty and social media,” says Botha.
Gust recently opened a sales office in Cape Town and is seeing keen interest for its services in the UK, Egypt, Spain and Australia.
“With incidents like the recent R3-million theft at a major local music event we definitely believe cashless event technology is the future. By combining our NFC wristbands with convenient smartphones management features we believe we’re offering a world first,” concludes Botha.