Four Moroccan banks invest in E-commerce

Published October 2nd, 2000 - 02:00 GMT

Four major banks in Morocco have set up a $2 million firm that will serve as a platform for shopping on the Internet. 


The Banque Populaire, BMCI, Credit du Maroc and the Societe Generale des Banques have formed Intelcom Maroc Telecommerce as a first step towards the expansion of e-commerce in the North African nation. 


The Banque Populaire holds 34 percent of the new firm's capital, while Intelcom owns 36 percent, the companies said in a statement. 


The firm, which will use an open market program adapted to the Moroccan reality, has started operating with 10 employees and will increase its staff to 30 by the end of the year. The banks said their new venture has already attracted five major clients in the few days of its existence. 


The firm's officials said its revenues would come from subscriptions and commissions on each transaction. They keep silent, however, on the amount of these commissions, adding "they will be within the international norms."  


Payments will be made mainly by credit cards. The electronic purchasing is simple, the group said, explaining that clients have to connect via the Internet to a "merchant server", surf the site and find the product they want to buy. Then they click on the button "buy me." 


Once the order is accepted, it is re-oriented towards the Maroc Telecommerce platform to be endorsed. If the offer is already registered, the client only needs to put in his account number and password. 


Such a solution offers the advantage of avoiding that sensitive information such as the card number or its expiry date circulate on the net at any transaction," said Ahmed Choukri, president and managing director of Intelcom. 


The platform checks the validation of the order and sends the authorization to the bank, which also checks the client's balance and allows him to carry out the transaction. 


If the response is positive, a digital receipt is sent directly to the client to attest the validation of the purchase. The notification of the order is sent by Maroc Telecommerce to the merchant by e-mail or fax to start the delivery process. The bank payment is made parallel to the transaction. – (Albawaba-MEBG) 






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