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The intermediary e-payment service was allowed to operate on a trial basis eight years ago.
However, at that time, there were only a few players in the market, including PeaceSoft, VTC Pay and Smartlink, which mostly provided e-payment portals and e-wallets.
E-payment is apparently still unpopular in Vietnam. The latest report of the Ministry of Industry and Trade showed that only 17 percent of e-commerce websites support e-payment.
|Investors can see great promise and high growth in the e-payment service market, though it now makes up only 5 percent of the total $4 billion worth of e-commerce.|
Despite the high growth rate of 35 percent in 2015, the e-payment in e-commerce remains modest.
According to Euromonitor, a market survey firm, e-payments only account for 0.17 percent of the retail industry.
However, investors are still pouring money into e-payment because they believe the market, with high population, high percentage of smartphone users and high internet access, is very promising.
According to Nguyen Hoa Binh, CEO of PeaceSoft, Ngan Luong e-wallet witnessed 100 percent growth rate in the last five years. Every year, Ngan Luong has payment flow worth VND5-6 trillion.
As for the companies which joined the market later, according to Nguyen Viet Dung, president of FPT Wallet, which runs Sendo.vn, the expected growth rate of the firms in the sector should "not be less than three digits."
Though the majority of Vietnamese still prefer cash payments, the proportion of non-cash payments in the national economy has decreased from 12.3 percent in 2012 to 11.89 percent of total means of payment in October 2015.
The total number of cards has also increased rapidly, with 70 million cards issued.
Just within one year, the State Bank of Vietnam granted licenses to provide e-payment services to 16 non-bank institutions.
Most of the companies provide all four types of services – e-payment gateway, payment for households’ expenses, electronic remittance and e-wallet. Each of them has its own advantages.
The biggest source of income for Ngan Luong, for example, is from the e-payment gateway service with nearly all websites using Ngan Luong’s service.
Meanwhile, the advantage of FPT Wallet is that it can ‘inherit’ the clients from Sendo.vn, FPT Telecom, FPT Retail and FPT Online, the other subsidiaries of the same FPT Group.
Over 10,000 shops on Sendo.vn now use FPT wallet to management their payments.
As for 123Pay of Zion, belonging to VNG Group, the advantage is that it has joined hands with many big names such as Lazada and Vietravel, Nguyen Kim, The Gioi Di Dong and Dien May Xanh.