In a groundbreaking move announced at Fintech Surge during GITEX 2023, Mastercard and Pemo, a UAE-based fintech startup, have joined forces to drive the transition towards a cashless economy. This strategic partnership is set to empower small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) across the Middle East, North Africa, and Pakistan (MENAP) region. By providing innovative digital spend management solutions, including physical and virtual corporate cards, Mastercard and Pemo aim to revolutionize expense management for SMEs in the UAE.
Let’s delve into the details of this exciting collaboration and explore how it’s poised to reshape the landscape of SME business operations in the UAE.
Pemo: Bridging the Gap for UAE SMEs
Pemo, a fintech champion catering to the specific needs of SMEs, plays a pivotal role in this transformative partnership.
The SME Ecosystem in the UAE
SMEs are the backbone of the UAE’s business landscape, comprising 94% of all registered companies. Notably, SMEs contribute a substantial 40% to the GDP in Dubai alone. Despite their significant economic influence, these businesses have long grappled with financial challenges, especially concerning expense management.
Challenges with Traditional Expense Management
Historically, SMEs in the UAE have relied on personal cards and petty cash for corporate spending. This antiquated approach poses several issues:
- Time-Consuming Reconciliation: The process of reconciling expenses often proves laborious and time-intensive.
- Error-Prone Practices: Manual processes leave room for errors and inconsistencies in financial records.
- Limited Spend Control: SMEs often struggle to adequately control their expenditures, leading to potential financial instability.
The Pemo Mastercard Corporate Advantage
Mastercard and Pemo’s collaboration brings a game-changing solution to these longstanding issues faced by UAE SMEs.
Digital and Contactless Payment Technology
Pemo Mastercard Corporate cards seamlessly blend digital and contactless payment technology. This integration empowers SMEs to streamline their spend management processes.
Key Features and Benefits
1. Digitization of Expenses
SMEs can now digitize their expense management, reducing the reliance on cumbersome manual processes.
2. One-Click Invoice Payments
The cards facilitate one-click invoice payments, enhancing efficiency and reducing administrative overhead.
3. Real-Time Cash Flow Monitoring
Real-time monitoring ensures full visibility over spending habits, empowering SMEs with better financial control.
Exclusive Merchant Discounts through ESS Platform
Pemo Mastercard Corporate cardholders can access over 150 merchant discounts through the Easy Saving Specials (ESS) platform. This exclusive program offers time-limited merchant offers that can be redeemed at checkout.
– Discounts on Essential Services
SMEs can enjoy discounts and offers on vital services such as Google Workspace, DocuSign, Google Ads, Meta Ads, and Notion.
– Flexible Workspace Solutions
The ESS platform extends its benefits to include flexible workspace options, catering to the evolving needs of SMEs.
Travel and Entertainment Perks
Beyond expense management, Pemo Mastercard Corporate cardholders are entitled to a host of travel and entertainment benefits:
– Airport Lounge Access
Enjoy access to airport lounges across the Middle East, ensuring a comfortable and productive travel experience.
– Airport Concierge Services
Experience personalized airport concierge services that add a touch of luxury to your business trips.
– Discounts on Transportation
Avail discounts on on-demand car rides and car rental services, further optimizing your business travel.
Exclusive Cashback Offer
To sweeten the deal, card activation before the year-end grants an exclusive, limited-time offer of up to 1% cashback on corporate advertising for three months.
Mastercard’s Commitment to SMEs
Gina Petersen-Skyrme, Vice President and Country Business Development Lead, UAE & Oman, Mastercard, expresses the company’s dedication to supporting businesses, big and small, in their financial endeavors:
“At Mastercard, we are dedicated to connecting businesses big and small with better ways to make payments and manage expenses. Our innovative payment solutions empower businesses with enhanced efficiency, transparency, and control. We are delighted to partner with Pemo as we continue to work towards our commitment of bringing 50 million micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) worldwide into the digital economy by 2025.”
Pemo’s Vision for SME Empowerment
Valerie Konde, Co-Founder of Pemo, shares the fintech startup’s enthusiasm for this partnership and its mission to uplift SMEs:
“We are thrilled to partner with Mastercard, who shares our vision to promote cashless spend management solutions for businesses in the UAE. We are specifically geared and catered towards SMEs, and we are well aware of their pain points. For all too long, SMEs have faced challenges when it comes to keeping a tight rein on their finances and expense management processes. Lack of visibility and cumbersome manual processes literally slow the whole operation and business down. Thanks to our partnership with Mastercard, we’re giving back to SMEs. Now, companies can operate even more efficiently using innovative technology and rewarding solutions that empower their businesses to grow. We are proud that Pemo Mastercard Corporate card holders will have access to a range of benefits that will actively help them expand their business and save money at the same time.”
Mastercard and Pemo’s strategic partnership marks a significant milestone in the UAE’s journey towards a cashless economy. By addressing SMEs’ unique challenges, this collaboration promises to unlock growth opportunities, enhance financial control, and reward businesses for their loyalty.
With SMEs forming the backbone of the UAE’s economy, the Mastercard and Pemo alliance couldn’t have come more opportunistically. As more businesses embrace digital spend management solutions, the UAE’s SME ecosystem is poised to flourish, driving economic growth and prosperity in the region.
Don’t miss out on this exciting transformation. Activate your Pemo Mastercard Corporate card today and embark on a journey towards smarter, more efficient expense management and business growth.