Enterprise and mobile software company Sybase 365 is currently driving a project aimed at the formation of a single Pan-African mobile-commerce (mCommerce) portal through partnerships that will join up to seven different regional projects, together using a common Sybase technical platform and financial product bouquet.

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Sybase 365 director of mCommerce business development in sub-Saharan Africa Shaun Campbell says that the company 
is assisting the regional portal projects to build footprints and roll out to new countries. 
This is carried out by supplying the transaction process 
engines and technologies for the different types of interfaces with mobile handsets, point-of-sale terminals, automatic teller machines 
and the Internet, which will be used by merchants, bill issuers, 
financial institutions, government agencies and the public to transact a large range of financial activities.

The company offers a whole spectrum of financial services and works with the regional projects to build relevant niche and mass products for specific user communities, such as small, medium-
size and microenterprises, governments, and other groups, across Africa.

“Sybase 365 is supplying the transaction switch technology, 
in some cases bulk messaging and aggregation, but we also assist in growing the projects by providing a teaming culture where Sybase provides consulting, 
assistance with regulatory bodies, 
product design and development, new business development and 
introduction of new territories to the projects. 
The main aim is to build a framework for a continental 
mCommerce portal that harnesses the separate independent projects to provide significant joint value,” says Campbell.

Most sub-Saharan African countries being targeted have already been included in contractual plans and will become operational on a staggered basis, and as each regional or national 
project develops and deploys its local services. In time, the mCommerce portal will be rolled out across the continent.

Further, he says that the 
broader mCommerce revolution that is taking place in the financial sector across Africa is seeing a movement away from basic person-to-person transfer services, airtime top-ups and fundamental platform products towards niche products and unserviced areas.

The mCommerce revolution can help people in Africa by saving time and money through its convenience and greatly improving security. 
African people often face many difficulties in transacting, such as having to deal in cash, extensive travel and missing out on opportunities while away from the home or business transacting, which places a strain on the economies of their countries.

SOURCE: ENGINEERING NEWS