How did sales of digital goods and services undergo such phenomenal growth, and where are they headed? We take a look at the history and upward trajectory of SA’s R27-billion-a-month industry.
Our recently released VAS Report shows clearly that digital goods and services are on the rise in South Africa. While the report focuses primarily on current and future trends, it’s helpful to track the history of VAS for context and clues to its upward trajectory.
Over the last three decades, the VAS ecosystem and its various role players have changed significantly. Historically, VAS transactions in the retail, banking, and MNO sectors had a broad definition, and were facilitated on software built for payments.
More recently, the definition of VAS has evolved to refer to the sale of digital products such as airtime and electricity – essential services in current times, and now easily purchased without leaving one’s front door. With the advancement of technology and networking, and as network capabilities expand, more VAS platforms are becoming available, and customers are no longer restricted to only buying VAS products at a retailer’s POS device.
Let’s have a look at some of the moments in payments history that initiated exciting changes in the VAS ecosystem.
It’s clear that the VAS landscape is quickly and constantly evolving, with major players keeping up with technological trends in order to offer their customers more. Any business that doesn’t keep their offering current and relevant risks getting left behind in this race to digital.