The recharge card business which generates an estimated N1 billion daily is on the verge of collapse as it is about to be swept away by the tide of mobile payments, Nigeria CommunicationsWeek can report. The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) ha licensed 16 mobile money operators to render mobile banking, payment and associated services using agent networks, and using the mobile phone as a means of authentication. Mobile payments will change the way consumers interact with financial services and make payments. According to a research by eShekels, recharge card is one of the fastest selling products by telcos in the country, recording daily sales of over N1billion worth of recharge cards. eShekels is a leading market research house and pioneer technology research firm specialising in the rapidly evolving Information and Communications Technology (ICT) sector. The report says 100 naira denomination of recharge cards is most patronized among subscribers of various operators as subscribers patronize the lowest denominations available. This indicates that lower denominations (500 naira and below) control a larger share of the market. According to the research, different channels of distributing recharge cards will change to mostly e-transfers and e-payments, thereby eliminating the airtime distribution chain. “Currently, the airtime retail business will experience a steady growth as recharge card sales increases. However, the future of this platform may change significantly as the drive towards e-payment and mobility is being attained. In the nearest future, the channels of distributing airtime will change to mostly e-transfers and payments. This may eliminate long chains and channels previously being used.” Femi Adeagbo, chief executive officer, Comnavig ICT Consultants said: “If a chunk of this income is moved to admittedly more efficient mobile money channels, significant income and job displacement may occur.” To address this income displacement challenge, Adeagbo said specific programmes aimed at tooling recharge card sellers with skills and resources to enable them offer agent services under a retail principle or as stand alone businesses should be developed.