Wednesday, November 26, 2008

NBAD launches mobile payments in Abu Dhabi - 160 Characters

m-Payment: SMS Bank Payments In Abu Dhabi

Submitted by Mike Grenville on Mon, 17 Nov 2008 15:20

The National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD) has rolled out an SMS based payment service that allows customers to access their bank accounts via mobile phones to pay, send, and receive money.

With the NBAD Arrow service, account holders can make a range of payments and money transfers instantly and securely from their mobile phones. This is the first in an 18-month roll-out plan agreed between NBAD and Luup which will extend to remittances, salary payouts, merchant payments and bill payments.

In the first stage of the roll-out, users can make transfers from their NBAD bank account to anyone in the UAE using their mobile phones. If the receiver is also an NBAD Arrow service user, the money goes straight into their bank account, otherwise the amount can be withdrawn from any NBAD ATM within 24 hours by using a code received via SMS.

To send money, users send PAY, the recipient's mobile phone number, the amount and the secure ID token code to 2666. So for example SMS: Pay 0519123456 300 123456 This will send 300 dirham to the person with mobile number 0519123456 with the example secure token code 123456.

In addition, users can pay utility bills as well as donate to charities like the UAE Red Crescent.

Mobile penetration rates outstrip Internet penetration rates by far in the Middle East region and in the UAE it is over 100 percent.


NBAD is a pioneer in the m-payments space because the bank’s senior management realized early on that the existing payment systems lag behind the available technology. NBAD has received many prestigious awards for its innovative products and services. Last month, the bank won ACN Arab Technology Award for Banking & Finance project implementation and CIO of the year and one of the systems the jury especially lauded was our ‘SMS Money Transfer’ service,” said Mr. Ahmed Al-Naqbi, Senior Manager, Channels and Electronic Banking Services at NBAD.

During the launch promotional period, all Arrow services will be FREE until 9th January 2009. Afterwards sending money to anyone in the UAE wil cost 3 AED (0.54 GBP) and paying a bill or donating to a charity will be 1 AED (0.18 GBP) + 2% of transaction value.

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