South African mobile payments provider iKhokha, which launched its Edge mobile card reader two years ago, this month introduced merchant cash advance services for retailers using its app for smartphones and tablets.

Targeting small-business operators that struggle to qualify for traditional loans from banks, iKhokha is offering entrepreneurs cash advances to be repaid via a fixed percentage of the merchant’s monthly sales. The service is available to all iKhokha customers with at least three months’ history of accepting mobile payments through Edge. When a deal is approved, iKhokha typically makes funds available within 24 hours.

It's a model similar to Square Capital and PayPal Credit, two U.S-based services that lend to mostly smaller merchants with future payments contributing to repayment.

The iKhokha rollout follows a pilot among 250 iKhokha customers, the company said. The average deal iKhokha extended to users during the pilot was 19,000 Rand (US$1,200).

Durban, South Africa-based iKhokha is a subsidiary of Emerge Mobile; the mobile merchant service is backed by Capital Eye Investments, a Johannesburg-based private equity firm.

Subscribe Now

Authoritative analysis and perspective for every segment of the payments industry

14-Day Free Trial

Authoritative analysis and perspective for every segment of the industry