On Thursday Bank Rakyat Indonesia (BRI) will announce an expanded network of merchants who have joined its electronic payment solution, dubbed BRI e-pay. According to the information we received, BRI e-pay was actually introduced last December as part of the bank’s move to embrace electronic commerce and remain competitive. BRI has been known primarily as the people’s bank which had always been aimed at the regional markets beyond major cities.

BRI e-pay program was initially rolled out with retailer Electronic Solutions last December and in January collaborated to offer iPhone 5 with a Rp 950,000 (USD 100) discount. Thursday’s event is meant to be a grand launch by announcing the partners that have signed up to the program.

BRI has managed to partner with nearly thirty online merchants including Tiket.com, Raja Kamar, blibli, Groupon (Disdus), Electronic Solutions, and many more to facilitate transactions. While BRI is not as large nor it is as popular as Indonesia’s major banks, namely Mandiri, BCA, and Permata, it has pledged a year ago to deliver a secure and painless electronic banking and payment experience for its customers.

Previously BRI had launched BRIZZI in 2011, an electronic money card which can be used in various transactions at over 3000 locations across the country including Pertamina gas stations, Selindo shops, ISS parking lots, Prambanan temple, as well as for certain transactions across Indonesia’s airports. In January of this year, BRIZZI transactions reached a monthly average of Rp 3.5 billion, which is actually about 1/10th of BCA’s monthly Flazz transactions as reported in 2011. Flazz is BCA’s electronic cash card. These cash cards don’t require holders to own a bank account to use nor are they linked to any identity.

We plan to be at the launch tomorrow morning and will report on any new details regarding the e-pay roll out.


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