WhatsApp Launches Digital Payments In Brazil

Aug 07, 2020

After a “closed” beta launch in India back in 2018, WhatsApp announced the launch of digital payments in Brazil. According to WhatsApp’s blog, users will be able to safely send money or purchase something from a local business without having to leave the chat feature. 

Brazil is the second-largest market after India, with over 120 million “individual users”. 

With more than 10 million small businesses that are the lifeblood of Brazil’s communities, consumers are accustomed to sending instant messages via WhatsApp to get answers. Brazil’s small business owners have utilized WhatsApp as their main marketing tool. Not only can customers view the store’s catalogs, but now they can send payments for items they desire to purchase. By facilitating payments, WhatsApp hopes to bring in more small businesses into the digital economy fold, creating more possibilities for growth. 

Security And Convenience

WhatsApp brings security to the forefront as one of two security measures will be required to avoid any unauthorized purchases: a six digit PIN or using a fingerprint. Furthermore, during its inception, their system will support credit or debit cards from the following institutions: Banco do Brasil, Nubank, and Sicredi for the Visa and Mastercard networks. WhatsApp is also working closely with Cielo, which is the major payments processor in Brazil. 

Cielo is known as Brazil’s debit and credit card “operator” that specializes in processing payments. As soon as the news broke, Cielo’s shares rocketed 30%. This is an anomaly, given that stocks worldwide, as well as Brazil’s, were plunged into the red due fears of an imminent second wave of the coronavirus. WhatsApp has also set up its system as an “open model” in order to receive more partnerships in the future. 

Due to the COVID-19 outbreak,subsequent lockdown, and social distancing measures, WhatsApp hopes to make sending money to loved ones as quick and convenient as sending a message. 

Matt Idema, Chief Operating Officer of WhatsApp, said:

“We can’t have the kind of interactions with each other that we normally would, if you want to lend someone cash or if you want to buy something from a local business”.

Also, since payments made on WhatsApp are made possible by Facebook Pay, the hope is to make it feasible to use the same card information throughout Facebook’s line of apps. 


When it comes to making a purchase or sending money through WhatsApp, it will be completely free for users. However, for small business merchants, they will need to pay 3.99 percent for every transaction to accept payments through WhatsApp. 

Matt Idema added further:

“WhatsApp is heavily used there, both by people and small businesses. We think we can help grow digital payments, help grow the digital economy with small businesses, and help support financial inclusion.”

Facebook’s Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg had already announced back in April of this year that the company was broadening its tools in order to help businesses via WhatsApp. 

Final Words

The recent outbreak has been a challenging time for millions of small businesses around the world. As more companies and small businesses have pivoted their business model in order to serve their customers online, WhatsApp has seized an opportunity to help more Brazilian customers and businesses send money and purchase desired goods. With this innovation, digital payments will increasingly become second nature.

Let us help you get a high risk merchant account today!

Get Started

Award winning.

  • 2012
  • 2013
  • 2014
  • 2015
  • 2016

Having a merchant account allows an account holder to take advantage of merchant cash advances. When a merchant is approved for an advance, the business agrees to receive a lump sum of cash in exchange for an agreed-upon percentage of future credit card sales.

Pricing varies depending on the merchant’s industry, past credit card processing history, the type of business seeking the account, average ticket sales, and average transaction volumes.

Yes, EMB works with merchants who are building their credit, as well as those who have poor credit. EMB also approves merchants that have no credit card processing history and businesses that have lost their merchant accounts due to high chargebacks.

Several factors influence a merchant’s risk level. Though only one factor likely will not get a merchant classified as high risk, a combination of these may: business size, location, and industry, credit score, credit card processing history, a industry’s reputation for excessive chargebacks, a prior history of high chargeback ratios, and whether a merchant exclusively sells online.

Virtual terminals are stationed on a merchant’s website, making it easy for customers to make a payment or purchase online. Merchants or a payment processor can easily set up virtual terminals, so online businesses can accept credit and debit card and e-check transactions.

A merchant account is a business account with an acquiring bank. Without this business account, which actually works more like a line of credit, a merchant cannot accept and process credit and debit card transactions. Businesses need a merchant account to accept major credit cards via a static point-of-sale terminal, mobile card reader, or through a virtual payment gateway.

After filling out EMB’s simple online application and submitting any necessary, requested documents, many merchants get approved within 24 and 48 hours.

EMB specializes in working with high-risk merchants. EMB works with many merchants, including but not limited to businesses in these industries: gambling and gaming, adult entertainment, nutraceuticals, vaping and e-cigarettes, electronics, tech support, travel, high-end furniture, weight loss programs, calling cards, e-books and software, and telecommunications.

Live Chat