Cooperative Bank of Oromia in Ethiopia partners Mastercard for prepaid cards and Community Pass



Ethiopia’s Cooperative Bank of Oromia has signed a new five-year strategic agreement with Mastercard as it looks to boost digital and financial inclusion across the country.

Through the partnership, the bank has launched its Coopbank Prepaid Mastercard offering designed specifically to enable international travellers from Ethiopia to complete global purchases online through e-commerce sites and digital platforms.

Card transactions will be supported by a dedicated mobile app that will offer “efficient card management capabilities”, Mastercard says.

Additionally, the Addis Ababa-based bank will also deploy Mastercard’s Community Pass technology, which functions as an “interoperable digital platform facilitating service delivery for marginalised individuals and communities”, according to Mastercard’s website.

More specifically, the bank will leverage the Farm Pass digital service contained within the platform to provide the country’s farmers and agricultural cooperatives with an agriculture marketplace and additional financial services that function even in offline environments.

Cooperative Bank of Oromia says it has already extended the Farm Pass to over 11,000 farmers in Ethiopia, including 16 farmer primary cooperatives and four cooperative unions, and has so far used the service to facilitate over 9,200 transactions between smallholder farmers and primary cooperatives with a total transaction volume of $1.4 million.

The bank adds through a statement that it plans to scale the service within the value chains of coffee, barley, wheat and poultry.

Deribie Asfaw, CEO of Cooperative Bank of Oromia, says the agreement with Mastercard seeks to “address the unique needs of our customers from farmers to consumers and businesses, empowering them to thrive and contribute to the economy”.

He adds that this agreement will deliver “secure and adaptable financial tools” to end consumers.

As part of its digital transformation efforts, the bank also launched CoopApp and CoopApp Alhuda through Temenos in March. Temenos’ T24 core banking engine has been powering the bank since 2017.