Last week, Flutterwave sent an email to all its users that it has discontinued virtual dollar cards effective from Sunday July 17, 2022. And now, other African fintech startups offering virtual dollar card are following suite.
They have started sending emails to their customer stating that their virtual card service will be unavailable indefinitely starting Saturday, July 16, 2022.
Virtual cards are digital replicas of physical bank cards. They are created and stored within digital virtual wallets. Atleast, I made use of my virtual dollar cards mostly to pay for goods online.
Citing the email received from Barter by Flutterwave; “…effective Sunday, 17th July 2022, all our Virtual Dollar cards will be unavailable for any transactions and purchases.”
The payments giant attributed the reason for this suspension to “an update from the company’s card partner”.
Barter is a Flutterwave consumer-facing virtual card platform that launched in early 2017.
This announcement by Flutterwave is bound to affect many other startups who use the company’s white-labeled virtual card service to issue virtual cards to their customers. A
Klasha that I was hoping will still be available sent a message to all its users that “All Klasha virtual dollar card services will be unavailable from Sunday, 17 July 2022.
All Klasha virtual dollar card services will be unavailable from Sunday, 17 July 2022.
This means that Klasha users will not be able to create, fund, withdraw or use the virtual cards until further notice. If you have virtual dollar cards, you need to do the following; pic.twitter.com/Ux7JSFlo2b
— Klasha_app (@Klasha_app) July 15, 2022
Other fintech startups including crypto exchange Busha, Rwanda-headquartered Payday, and Ugandan Eversend also issued similar notices.
It’s not clear which “card partner” Flutterwave and the other fintech startups are referring to, but these platforms have issued virtual cards powered by MasterCard and Visa—two leading global card issuers.
This simply means that all virtual dollar card providers in Africa have terminated their services till further notice.