Galileo Financial Technologies, a subsidiary of SoFi Technologies, Inc., and Mastercard on Wednesday (May 4) unveiled a multiyear strategic alliance focused on “accelerating digital transformation and improving access to financial opportunities for unbanked and underserved segments in Latin Americas and the Caribbean.”
The partnership between Galileo and Mastercard “will enable Latin American FinTechs and issuers to build and launch digital financial services using their combined capabilities and infrastructure,” according to a press release. The companies will distribute various Mastercard products and services to support their customers, the press release says.
Galileo is now a Preferred Technology Partner and fast issuer processor within the Mastercard Partner Network, Mastercard Engage, in Latin America and the Caribbean. Internet and smartphone penetration across Latin America has reached nearly 70% and continues to grow, per the press release.
“Financial inclusion, at its core, is based on digital inclusion. With high levels of digital adoption, Latin American consumers are largely poised to adopt solutions that reduce their reliance on cash,” Galileo Director of Development and Strategy Commercial for Latin America Tory Jackson said in the press release.
“Our alliance with Mastercard reinforces our strategic commitment to provide innovative, world-class digital financial services and modernize payment solutions for consumers in Latin America,” he said.
Galileo has about 100 million end user accounts. It serves customers who offer digital financial services, ranging from debit, credit, and business-to-business (B2B) payments to remittances, BNPL (buy now, pay later), cryptocurrencies and other emerging payment methods.
“Through the Mastercard Developers portfolio, Mastercard is helping more than 2,000 fintech innovators in the region achieve scale, and the addition of Galileo as a preferred technology partner will help further expand access to financial services to more people,” Thiago Dias, vice president of FinTech and enablers, Mastercard Latin America and the Caribbean, said in the press release.
Mastercard has more than 100 million digital cards from its alliances with 100 FinTechs in Latin America and the Caribbean, he said.
Related: PYMNTS Intelligence: How Merchants Are Meeting Latin American Millennial, Generation Z Consumers’ Payment Preferences
Latin American millennials and Generation Z consumers appear to have embraced the contactless payment trend to the greatest degree, flocking to emerging payment tools that connect with their digital devices. Almost half of Brazilian millennials (46%) and 37% of Gen Z consumers in Brazil saying they currently use this method to make payments.
Almost 4 out of 5 millennials in Latin America and the Caribbean (79%) report an interest in learning more about cryptocurrencies. The same study found that 76% of millennials would use digital currencies once they better understood their benefits.