IFC Invests US$7 Million in Global E-Commerce Payment System SafetyPay

World Bank Group member IFC has invested US$7 million in SafetyPay, a Latin America-focused global payment solution that allows consumers to make online purchases from merchants worldwide.

Based in Florida, SafetyPay provides shoppers with a secure way to access lower prices and increased efficiency in their online buys. Users pay through directly through their local banks and in their own currencies, greatly simplifying the online purchasing process.

The SafetyPay solution is highly relevant in Latin America, where credit card penetration rates are often low and e-commerce is booming. We’ve seen services similar to this before, such as Ebanx, which allows Brazilian consumers to purchase internationally using domestic methods of payment. Manuel Montero, SafetyPay CEO, discussed the scenario faced by Latin American consumers:

In many developing countries, people do not have access to credit cards and have—until recently—not been able to make online purchases. With the financial support of investors such as IFC, we are continuing our aggressive growth strategy to partner with banks and companies to give more consumers in Latin America access to our services.

Consumers aren’t the only ones to benefit from SafetyPay. The system also helps merchants to expand their customer bases and provides banks with an attractive new service to offer potential clients.

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For IFC, this SafetyPay investment is a channel for getting involved in the flourishing online and electronic commerce market. Kent Lupberger, IFC Global Head of Telecommunications, Media, and Technology, remarked:

Online commerce increases price transparency, lowers transaction costs, and enhances export opportunities. SafetyPay is playing an important role in giving more people access to online commerce, and we look forward to supporting their continued growth.

SafetyPay launched in Peru in 2007 and is active in Mexico, Costa Rica, Brazil and Colombia. It currently partners with 84 banks in Latin America as well as companies like Groupon, Despegar and Volaris Airlines. The service is also available in North America and Europe.