On August 12, 2020, Apollo Fintech announced that it has completed the development of the National Payment Platform (NPP). The platform is designed as a cashless system that makes it possible for a central bank to issue a CBDC. Once a CBDC is added, the platform allows the central bank to add agents and commercial banks.
How NPP Works
NPP is designed to cover the monetary system of a country including P2P transactions and merchants. The transactions can be carried out using SMS, QR Codes, the app, offline codes, cards, and other means. Banks authorized by the central bank can onboard merchants and citizens for mass adoption. It also covers currency withdrawals, deposits, currency exchange, payment, and money transfers.
According to Stephen McCullah, the Apollo Fintech CEO, NPP will allow regulated agents and commercial banks to take advantage of the blockchain to enable frictionless transactions. The CEO added that the platform would allow participants in an economy to save huge amounts of time and resources. Besides that, it will make it possible for an economy to become massively efficient at scale.
Some of the Features Included In NPP
Some of the features supported by NPP include online sign-up by citizens and merchants to facilitate easy onboarding and accessibility. The platform also supports a product catalog where merchants can publish their goods and collect payments directly through NPP. Additionally, NPP supports a PoS system for the sale of goods and services.
NPP also features support for withdrawal and deposit of funds via an online wallet as well as international money remittances. The users of the platform can also add bank cards that they can use to top up their balance or make withdrawals.
Other benefits include quantum-resistant data encryption on an immutable distributed ledger. Besides that, the database has zero downtime. Finally, the platform allows users to make payments and check their account data using an SMS.
Eliminating the Challenges of Banking Accessibility and Usability
NPP is designed to be compatible with Apollo Cash, a platform that supports the frictionless transition of the legacy financial system to digital payments. The NPP platform will eliminate the barriers of usability and accessibility by allowing physical access through local agents. It will use top-up cards for this purpose that will be available through major retailers in a country. Usability is increased by allowing transactions to be completed via SMS.
Enabling Frictionless Payments
In 2018, the World Bank reported that around 1.7 billion adults across the globe were unbanked. However, about 1.14 billion of these people own a mobile phone, which they can use to access financial services.
Apollo Fintech is working to create a comprehensive, blockchain-powered transaction system that can be integrated into the systems of central banks. McCullah, the Apollo Fintech CEO, said that they were happy to have created the first solution that allows central banks to issue blockchain-backed CBDCs. The CBDCs will be accessible through mobile text and it will offer huge economic benefits to developing nations and millions of banked and unbanked people across the world.
Image Source: Apollo Fintech