Kanoo seeing uptick in merchant users

Kanoo is seeing an uptick in merchant users as the adoption of digital payment systems picks up slowly, but the use of the Sand Dollar through its digital wallet systems has not yet gained real traction, Kanoo’s Chief Marketing Officer Khalil Braithwaite explained yesterday.

Braithwaite, who made the comments following a press event to announce the Kanoo Summer Festival, explained that The Central Bank of The Bahamas (CBOB) continues to plan an education campaign to ensure that more and more Bahamians understand what The Bahamas’ digital currency is and how to access it and use it.

“Kanoo has always embraced the Sand Dollar, so they (CBOB) have always been happy for our support,” said Braithwaite.

“So we have a very open dialogue. It think what they realize is the introduction was a soft introduction. So they’re doing a reintroduction with a bigger education campaign.

“The goal is to really educate the market about the Sand Dollar. We have seen some preliminary adoption, but with any technology, you always have the early adopters.

“Has it come mainstream? No. But the conversation and the elements that are needed to make it mainstream are being had.”

The payment system’s summer festival, which takes place this Saturday at Fusion Superplex and will be cashless, was designed to onboard specific small businesses to Kanoo’s merchant services and also to introduce and reintroduce users who visit the festival to the functionality of the digital wallet system, Braithwaite said.

He explained that Kanoo will use Sand Dollars specifically this Saturday for some transactions to demonstrate its use.

Hurricane Dorian and the COVID-19 pandemic sped up the rollout of digital wallets and the Sand Dollar.

The Bahamas has been widely celebrated for being the first country to roll out a central bank digital currency, the Sand Dollar.

And while the Sand Dollar is not being widely used, digital wallets and digital wallet companies have found several niche areas to provide services, such as the distribution of vouchers.

“Once the pandemic hit, other elements of the digital wallets became highlighted through efforts of the Department of Social Services and Hands for Hunger,” said Braithwaite.

“So, people all of a sudden have a different appreciation for that digital infrastructure voucher. That market used it heavily.

“Merchants were always interested in receiving payments but… some did not understand the full depth of what the app could provide.”

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Chester Robards

Chester Robards rejoined The Nassau Guardian in November 2017 as a senior business reporter. He has covered myriad topics and events for The Nassau Guardian. Education: Florida International University, BS in Journalism

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