Progresif launches Brunei’s first mobile wallet

|     James Kon     |

PROGRESIF subscribers will now able to transfer funds, pay bills, shop online and send money abroad securely and in real time on their mobile device following the launch of the Progresif PAY, Brunei’s first mobile wallet, thanks to the first-of-its-kind partnership between Bank Islam Brunei Darussalam and Progresif.

Minister of Communications Awang Abdul Mutalib bin Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Setia Dato Paduka Haji Mohd Yusof launched the facility in a ceremony held at The Rizqun International Hotel yesterday.

Powered by BIBD NEXGEN, Progresif PAY creates an alliance between Brunei’s most innovative mobile operator and the country’s best digital bank at the forefront of branchless banking and mobile commerce by improving access and creating opportunities for greater commercial efficiency, diversification and development of Brunei’s digital economy.

The development is in line with the vision of His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Sa’adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam for Vision 2035 which calls for a more dynamic and sustainable economy.

BIBD’s digital journey began in 2011, continued with innovations such as online and mobile applications that have been downloaded more than 100,000 times, peer-to-peer fund transfers, QR code payments and Brunei’s first eWallet payment platform.

Today, BIBD NEXGEN moves 12 million transactions worth BND3 billion annually.

Through Progresif PAY, parents can send allowances to their children while young adults aged 15 years and above can use the wallet to better manage their finances.

Minister of Communications Awang Abdul Mutalib bin Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Setia Dato Paduka Haji Mohd Yusof during the launch of the Progresif PAY
The Minister of Communications tours the BIBD Nexgen services at the event. – PHOTOS: RAHWANI ZAHARI
Minister of Communications Abdul Mutalib bin Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Setia Dato Paduka Haji Mohd Yusof in a group photo

Businesses can use the wallet to accept payments as well as pay staff wages or suppliers directly into their Progresif PAY accounts.

BIBD NEXGEN and the Progresif PAY application will allow Progresif and BIBD to work with companies, institutions and individuals from different industries to develop branchless banking and FinTech related features and applications to create value added services such as payment reminders, money management tools and virtual mobile marketplace.

In his speech, Mubashar Khokhar, Managing Director and CEO of BIBD, commented, “BIBD started its cashless journey towards digitising Brunei’s economy seven years ago in 2011 with the launch of BIBD Debit Card. Our commitment towards digital innovation exponentially increased with more innovative services such as BIBD Online, BIBD Mobile, Peer-to-Peer fund transfers, QR Code Payments, Brunei’s first eWallet payment platform and virtual card, a result of another alliance that we made with MasterCard.”

He highlighted that one in every four Bruneian is a BIBD digital customer and since 2014, BIBD has seen digital transactions increase by 400 per cent. This year, BIBD expect to see three billion Brunei dollars’ worth of transactions and 12 million of transactions through the BIBD NexGen universe.

“With BIBD current’s market share at 70 per cent, we realised we needed to share our proven capacity and capability to further strengthen Brunei’s financial ecosystem. Alhamdulillah, today’s launch further reinforce our digital commitment with a totally new proposition – Progresif Pay powered by BIBD NexGen. In addition to its excellent features, the wallet will also serve as Brunei’s first branchless banking system that will bring more connectivity and financial inclusion to everyone.”

Paul Taylor, Chief Executive Officer of Progresif, said, “Progresif PAY will change the way we make everyday purchases by transforming payments in a way never seen before in Brunei.

“The partnership with BIBD brings their experience in financial security and digital transactions to the fast-growing innovative mobile service consumers of Brunei.

“This is another example of how Progresif has expanded beyond the traditional definition of a telecommunications company. This time, we are defining the standards for digitisation and e-commerce with Brunei’s first mobile wallet,” he added.

In the last few years, Progresif has been focussed on innovation throughout its business such as simplifying its pricing plans and removing the annual licence fee, making communications simple affordable and more accessible, while expanding the network coverage and capacity with the goal of introducing 4G services.

In April 2017, Progresif opened its own Startup Lab to support the growth of local innovation and to assist startups in their development. A few months later, the company launched Brunei’s first app-based mobile radio station to support the growing music and content production industry in Brunei.

Devin Edwards, Chief Marketing Officer of Progresif, said, “Being progressive is about continuous improvement and this is reflected in all that we do, whether it’s about new products and services or showcasing our support for the local community.

“We are thankful to BIBD for being a great strategic partner in the development and launch of Progresif Pay in collaboration with their branchless banking initiative. We look forward to working with them in their ongoing development of their NEXGEN banking services.”

With the introduction of Progresif PAY, Brunei is poised to join the market leaders of mobile payments, including China and Singapore, adding more users to the pool of over 170 million mobile payment users in Asia.