KUCHING: Boost, the leading cashless e-wallet app in Malaysia, welcomes collaborations from other e-wallet applications to enhance the implementation of digital monetary transactions towards a cashless society.
Axiata Digital Services CEO Mohd Khairil Abdullah, when asked for his thoughts about this, said he was open to collaborations with competitors such as Sarawak Pay.
“Boost definitely wants to work with Sarawak Pay and even with other e-wallet applications in other parts of Malaysia. This is because we (Boost) believe that our main competition is cash.
“This country is trying to move into a cashless society and therefore, all of us e-wallet players have a role to play in making ‘cashless’ as the pre-dominant form of organisation in Malaysia.
“Hence, if there is a chance to work with Sarawak Pay, we really welcome it because we feel that we alone cannot fight cash. We need friends and allies,” he told reporters at a Boost media luncheon held at the Old Courthouse here, yesterday.
Khairil shared that in the beginning, it was very difficult to get the public and merchants to use Boost.
“We had to do a lot of consumer education because cash has been around for a few hundred years. Thus, we have to educate the market about QR payment and what Boost is. We also had to throw in a lot of incentives to make people want to use the application.
“For the merchants, the merchant discount rate (MDR) is zero where we did not charge them anything. This is because compared to online transaction, cash is likely free and direct.
“In order for us to encourage them to adopt our technology, we have to make it free for them as well. Apart from that, we also provide them with micro-financing or micro-lending for the small entrepreneurs,” he said, adding that bank branches would never provide such financial services for the unbanked and underserved segments.
Khairil also noted that Sarawak represented 25 per cent of the nation in terms of Boost transactions and second most active state in Boost application after Sabah, as well as having close to 4,000 merchants in the state.
On Boost transactions in Sarawak, Khairil stated that it was roughly about RM47 million in terms of cash merchants or small entrepreneurs, not including mall merchants (such as KFC, Guardian and Watsons).
Also present was Boost regional manager (Sarawak) Frisca Freddy.