EghtesadOnline: More than 2.26 billion transactions worth 2,534.9 trillion rials ($22.5 billion) were processed through Shaparak, Iran’s payment settlement network, during the last calendar month to October 22.
In volume terms the transactions declined 1.6% and in value registered a 1.18% increase compared to the earlier month, the Shaparak website reported.
Likewise, the transactional volume grew by 22.49% and the value fell 3.14% compared to the same period last year when 1.84 billion transactions with a total value of 2,617.25 trillion rials ($23.26 billion) were processed.
The annual hike in value terms is ascribed mainly to rising inflation and increase in the number of receiving instruments and debit cards plus growing tendency among the public to use electronic payment tools instead of cash, according to Financial Tribune.
In order to provide more robust information, the national payment settlement network factors out the effect of inflation to present data in real value terms.
Accordingly, the real value of transactions fell 0.57% on a monthly basis.
On a year-on-year basis, the real value of transactions registered a decline of 22.26%.
Shaparak offers services via three main instruments, namely internet, cellphone and point of sale (POS) devices.
Based on the report, the total number of instruments for receiving payments showed 1.49% increase compared to a month earlier to reach 10.05 million.
The rise is attributed mainly to online payment gateways and mobile instruments, which respectively increased by 3.13% and 1.4% compared to a month earlier.
POS devices in shops registered 1.28% rise during the one-month period.
In terms of market share, POS devices were at the top with 77.02%. This was followed by mobile instruments with 12.35% and internet payment gateways holding a 10.63% share.
Higher number of POS devices is due to their wider spread compared to other devices plus their capability to be used without the need for supplementary devices such as PC or cellphone, which may not always be accessible.
POS devices accounted for 87.69% of the total number of transactions by processing more than 1.98 billion transactions. This was followed by online gateways with 6.25% and mobile instruments 6.06%.
In terms of services offered by Shaparak, the figures indicate that 84% of transactions were conducted for “buying goods and services”.
“Buying cellphone recharges and paying bills” were next on the list, representing 11.34% of all processed transactions during the month under review.
More than 4.67% of the transactions were conducted for “checking account balances”.
With respect to the performance of payment service providers during this period, Beh Pardakht Mellat, a Bank Mellat-affiliated PSP firm, held the lion's share both in volume and value accounting for 22.5% and 23.87%of all transactions, respectively.
This was followed by Saman Electronic Payment, a Bank Saman-affiliate, which accounts for 18.76% of all processed transactions in terms of volume and 15.64% of the total value of processed transactions.
Saman Electronic Payment ranked first in terms of volume of transactions processed via mobile instruments, accounting for 27.47% of all transactions.
Asan Pardakht Persian held the top slot in volume of transactions processed via online payment gateways, accounting for 37.10%.
Likewise, Beh Pardakht Mellat accounted for 23.76% of all transaction via POS devices.
As for the penetration rate of payment tools, the report said there were 1,686 instruments per 10,000 adults (above 18 years old) during the month.
POS terminals had the highest and online gateways had the lowest penetration rates, registering 1,298 and 179 instruments per 10,000 adults, respectively.
Tehran Province ranked first with the highest number of POS terminals. The number of active POS devices in the sprawling metropolis grew 1.06% to reach 1.62 million.
This was followed by Khorasan Razavi and Isfahan provinces, with 592,869 and 543,315 active devices in operation, respectively.
The lowest number of POS devices was in Ilam Province with 56,844 devices.