Steps up Cashless Malling in 80 SM malls nationwide and SM Malls Online
Digital payment is ubiquitous in the Philippines.
In the past two years, there’s been a shift towards a cash-lite economy as nationwide cashless payment usage increased by 30% in 2021 from 10% pre-pandemic.
The Department of Trade and Industry also said that 9 out of 10 Filipinos are somewhat familiar with cashless payment brands.
Not only that it is convenient, but digital payment is also regarded as a safer and more inclusive way of enabling Filipinos to access various services.
Seeing this unprecedented growth, SM Supermalls has expressed its support for the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas’ (BSP) financial inclusion campaign by promoting the acceptance and usage of cashless payments in its 80 malls nationwide and its digital platform, the SM Malls Online App.
“Cashless payment has already been here for quite some time. Even pre-pandemic we have been working with fintech companies like GCash and Maya. But today’s event is a consolidated effort of the public and the private sector to push for cashless payments toward financial inclusion,” said Steven T. Tan, president of SM Supermalls.
Tan was joined by BSP’s Deputy Governors Bernadette Romulo Puyat and Mamerto Tangonan; Undersecretary David Almirol Jr., Department of Information and Communication Technology; Assistant Secretary Mary Jean Pacheco, Department of Trade and Industry; Daniel Lim, vice president for operations at SM Malls Online App; and Delfin Jay M. Sabido, senior vice president and chief innovation officer at China Banking Corporation at the launch event of Cashless Malling at the SM Mall of Asia, Oct. 18.
“We are very happy to be partnering with SM Supermalls. For us to push financial inclusion, we need to be with SM Supermalls to ensure that no one gets left behind. They are promoting cashless transactions and we know very well that they cater to Filipinos from all walks of life so this will be very helpful for the BSP’s financial inclusion strategy,” said BSP Deputy Governor Berna Romulo-Puyat.
According to BSP Deputy Governor Romulo-Puyat, the digitalization in financial transactions was accelerated due to the pandemic.
From 29%, bank account ownership in the Philippines grew to 56% and almost all of it is e-money.
However, the BSP believes that there is still work to do to reach out to the unbanked in the country. “With the help of the private sector like SM Supermalls, we will be able to push for financial inclusion as this is the first step for them to own bank accounts where they can save.”
In SM Supermalls, eight out of 10 stores are already accepting digital and QR payments.
With this endeavor, the largest mall chain in the country hopes to encourage its mall goers to do cashless malling at SM.
“Cashless payment is something that we have been supporting. Digitalization is really the way of the future. With that, we are pushing cashless malling at SM with the BSP. Here, our ultimate goal is for all our merchants to accept cashless payments. We encourage all our tenants to go cashless because it is safer and more convenient,” said Tan during the press interviews.
Through cashless malling, SM shoppers can use their mobile wallets, online bank accounts, and the QRPH App to pay for various products and services at SM.
Meanwhile, with the QRPH App, SM shoppers are given the power to pay cashless using any of their e-money accounts by scanning the QR code at the counter.
They just have to enter the amount to be paid and show the confirmation message to the cashier.
To cash-in on the QRPH App, SM shoppers can go to the Mall Information booths (SM Bills Pay), Customer Service (SM Store), and Bills Payment at the SM Markets.
For more information about SM Supermalls’ Cashless Payments, visit www.smsupermalls.com.