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Indonesian telecom, bank team up on mobile wallet

Indonesia's largest telecom, PT Telkomsel, and state lender Bank Negara Indonesia have created a partnership to allow BNI account holders top up their Telkomsel mobile wallets via ATM transfers, said an article at This is Telkomsel's first such bank alliance.

Out of 110 million Telkomsel customers, 8.2 million currently use the company's mobile wallet, known as T-Cash. Previously these customers could top up their T-Cash at Telkomsel counters and select mini markets.

Through its new partnership, Telkomsel hopes to achieve 300,000 ATM T-Cash top-ups this year. “T-Cash users can top up their T-Cash accounts to a maximum of Rp 5 million ($546.52) through BNI ATMs,” Telkomsel president director Sarwoto Atmosutarno, said on Wednesday.

Gatot Mudiantoro Suwondo, BNI president director, said the bank would benefit from the partnership that nets BNI a fee of Rp 5,000 (54.1 cents) for each top up. “We are levying fees because of the small user base but as the user base expands, the fees could drop to zero,” he said.

Eventually BNI would like to move from ATMs to mobile-based tools, Suwondo said, but the shift would take time. “Telkomsel has been aggressive in introducing their T-Cash,” he said. “However, people need to get used to this tool and this is why we have to educate people on the e-channel face to face, and not just through advertisements.”

For more on this topic, visit our mobile banking research center.