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Thursday, Jan 24th

SA payment firm announces a first for Africa

SA payment firm announces a first for Africa.

South African payments firm Yoco has announced its integration with Xero, New Zealand-based cloud accounting software. The alliance has been touted as Xero's first Point-of-Sale (PoS) payments add-on in Africa.

Currently SMEs in South Africa can accept card payment at the store or 'on the go' using Yoco's PoS app and card readers.

The integration with Xero means Yoco merchants who use Xero has their accounting software can seamlessly update cash & card sales, VAT, bank account settlements and processing fees into their Xero system.

The software enables users to automatically feed Yoco payments into their Xero accounting package and thereby streamline cash-flow reconciliations.

"Cash flow is the lifeblood of any business and accounting is the means by which a business owner can answer the question, 'how am I doing?'. Our integration with Xero is an extension of Yoco's mission to empower the growth of small businesses by allowing our merchants to spend less time administering their business and more time growing and engaging their customers. We want to make running a business as easy as swiping a card," says Carl Wazen, Yoco Co-founder and Chief Business Officer.

Nick Jacobs, Senior Software Engineer at Yoco, explains, "Nowadays, accounting platforms are no longer an in-house facility running on a mainframe somewhere. Xero represents a new breed of business support technology based in the cloud, specifically suited for SMEs. This fits in perfectly with Yoco's fully cloud-based architecture, making this integration possible by leveraging open standards like OAuth and HTTP-based web services. Xero's existing web services interface made integration of the Yoco back-end a straightforward development exercise."

Gary Turner, Xero co-founder and managing director for Xero in the Europe, Middle East and Africa region, added "Xero is committed to provide simple, easy to use and functional solutions for small businesses. We welcome when other tech companies, like Yoco, integrate with our platform and enhances the user experience."

There are 1,500 merchants currently using the system, according to Yoco.

The company could not divulge more on its expansion plans to Africa, but did elaborate on its vision for all African SMEs to have access to integrated electronic payments at the point of sale.

Going forward the intention is to invest heavily in cloud PoS application and the business intelligence portal.

"Our API is now powering up integrations into two 3rd party POS systems in South Africa (TabletPOS, Platinum POS) as well as Xero, the global cloud accounting software built for small businesses. We continue to add more integrations and grow the ecosystem so that our merchants have access to the best platforms in a unified way," the company added.

In order to establish and sustain its value proposition within Africa's increasingly competitive digital payments arena, Yoco will focus on its pay-as-you-use pricing model, integration with 3rd party applications, and the speed of its onboarding process.

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