The financial services space has sparked a lot of interest across the globe. Uber, the popular e-taxi app has revealed plans to take advantage of its numbers and the supposed lucrative nature of the space with a new division named Uber Money. According to reports from the ride-sharing corporation, Uber Money will take the form of similar products with a digital wallet as well as an upgraded debit and credit cards (in collaboration with Barclays Bank).
Uber Money will target its plus 4 million driver-partners across the world. The product will also be available to Uber-affiliated courier services that will allow them to get access to mobile bank accounts for ease of payment after each trip.
As mentioned, financial services such as payments and mobile wallets have proved successful for companies that have done them right. Uber is betting on the same thing to turn a profit because the corporation has not been doing well financially, especially after the exit of its co-founder and former CEO Travis Kalanick and a series of HR missteps and internal squabbles.
The product is fronted to make drivers loyal to the platform to serve an excess of 100 million monthly active customers, many of whom pay for the service using credit cards.
At the moment, Uber is testing a debit card with instant pay in select markets. Instant pay is reported to be doing very well in the U.S., with up to 70 percent of payments made using the product that does not attract bank charges.
Locally, Uber Kenya signed an agreement with Suzuki Motor Corporation to allow drivers to push the Uber CHAPCHAP product with exceptional after-sales support, parts availability, and address warranty issues in a timely manner for drivers. It was a move that purposed to make ends meet for struggling drivers.
Uber Money is said to operate on the same premise. It features a no-cost KES 10000 ($100) overdraft facility for drivers who do not have fuel money.
Uber says its wallet product will arrive in 2020 and will be integrated with Apple Pay and Google Pay (not available locally) that will then allow drivers gain access to their earnings immediately without a physical debit card.