Careem Pay gets in-principle approval for the EMI license

Zahid Lilani
Careem Pay gets in-principle approval for the EMI license
Careem Pay gets in-principle approval for the EMI license

Careem Pay has received an in-principle approval (IPA) from the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) to offer financial services, including bill payments and P2P transfers.

EMIs, the backstory: State Bank of Pakistan released Regulations for Electronic Money Institutions (EMIs) in 2019 to promote electronic payments, encourage payments innovation, increase financial inclusion, and create a regulatory framework for non-banking entities.

EMIs offer user-friendly, low-cost digital payment solutions like wallets, prepaid cards, and contactless payments.

As per the regulations, prospective EMI applicants are approved in three stages; in-principle approval, approval to begin pilot operations, and final approval.

Careem Pay was granted in-principal approval on March 24, 2022. 

Tell me more: Earlier this year, Careem launched Careem Pay as an independent entity in Pakistan. Careem Pay is already live in other markets such as U.A.E.

Careem is on a quest to build a super-app for the MENAP region. 

For instance, in U.A.E, Careem offers 11 services, including ride-hailing, food and grocery delivery, micro-mobility, payments, and partner services such as home cleaning.

Careem Pay’s launch in Pakistan is another step toward becoming a super app in Pakistan.

Providing convenient and accessible financial services to more than 9 million customers, 800,000 captains, and over 3,000 merchants will now be possible through Careem Pay.

Services offered once approved: Once Careem Pay gets the final approval and goes live, it will be able to offer: 

  • Bill payments, including utilities.
  • Government and education fees payment.
  • Peer-to-peer (P2P) transfers. 
  • Wallet cash-outs through digital and physical cards.
  • Remittances.
  • Customer and merchant payments.

Before you go: Careem is a household name in Pakistan, but other Fintechs are pursuing similar services. Hubpay, which was also granted in-principal approval earlier this year, currently offers remittances to Pakistan. 

Like Careem, it also plans to launch multiple product offerings for consumers and merchants. 

Big picture:  The fintech revolution is sweeping Pakistan, and everyone wants a piece of it. This creates a tremendous opportunity for investors as well as entrepreneurs.

However, there’s no better company to take advantage of this opportunity in Pakistan than Careem. With millions of transactions every day, a huge customer base, and brand recognition, it is uniquely positioned to lead the way with a world-class solution. 

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