Astra Tech – Mastercard Partnership to Bring Enhanced Payment Services to MENA

Astra Tech’s PayBy is set to become one of the first fintech players to obtain a Mastercard principal membership licence. Collaboration with the world’s second-largest payment processing corporation has boosted Astra’s ecosystem and enhanced payment services in the UAE and wider MENA region.

Abdallah Abu Sheikh, the co-founder and CEO of Astra Tech (BOTIM’s parent company), said the company wants to be the leading technology player in the MENA region. “We are one of the biggest technology companies in this part of the world, helping tens of millions of users daily. Our commitment is to make our users’ lives easier. Financial services are one of the most important and underdeveloped sectors in this part of the world,” he said. “To take on this challenge, we chose to partner with a trusted and world-renowned company like Mastercard to ensure we provide the best services our users deserve.”

JK Khalil, Cluster General Manager, MENA East, Mastercard, said they are enabling fintechs to innovate and bring new digital payment solutions to market with speed and ease. “We are excited to partner with Astra Tech’s PayBy and support their vision to further empower other fintechs through our BIN sponsorship services.”

He explained that millions of users, through the Astra Tech – Mastercard partnership, will have access to Mastercard’s global reach and suite of products as the company strives to create a more connected and inclusive digital future for all.

Astra will issue branded Mastercard digital and physical cards to millions of users on tops of its platforms BOTIM and Payby, provide authorization services and prepaid multi-currency cards. Astra Tech will also act as an acquirer and leverage Mastercard’s suite of products, including Payment Gateway, Tap on Phone, and Fraud and Cyber Security.

As part of its vision, the company will offer BIN sponsorship services, enabling other third-party Fintechs to issue prepaid cards and connect with Mastercard’s card scheme network. BOTIM, with more than 100 million registered users and an 80 percent market penetration rate in the UAE, can emerge as the biggest card-issuing fintech in the region. It will enable millions of users to access cutting-edge financial services on top of their communication platforms.