MayaSoft: Digitizing payments and unlocking credit for Uzbekistan’s small businesses

Our programs

Why this program?

  • While Uzbekistan is experiencing economic growth and government initiatives are promoting retail digitalization, the country’s point-of-sale (POS) market still lacks affordable, comprehensive solutions for micro and small enterprises. This gap is particularly pronounced in rural areas, where small businesses have limited access to digital financial services and tools compared to their urban counterparts. Currently, only about 400,000 POS terminals exist in the market, with only half actively used, indicating a significant number of businesses not fully engaged in non-cash payments. 
  • Micro and small enterprises, including approximately 2 million self-employed individuals, make up a significant portion of Uzbekistan’s economy. Despite their importance, these businesses face substantial challenges in accessing digital payment solutions and financial services. Existing POS solutions often require significant upfront investments in hardware (between $250 and $400), charge high transaction fees, and have lengthy settlement times of up to 3-7 days. These factors collectively discourage adoption and limit the growth potential of small enterprises, especially those operating in cash-dominated sectors.
  • Supporting the growth and digitalization of the small business sector is paramount. Uzbekistan has a young population, with around 800,000 individuals below the age of 29 entering the labor market annually. Small businesses are key drivers of employment opportunities for these jobseekers as well as wider economic diversification, and poverty alleviation across the country.

Program overview

This collaboration between MayaSoft, a fintech startup, Accion, and Mastercard Strive will provide micro and small enterprises in Uzbekistan with an enhanced solution for card acquiring and seamless business financing through the utilization of card processing data. By providing affordable and accessible digital payment solutions, this program aims to facilitate the transition of businesses from the informal sector to the cashless segment of Uzbekistan’s economy.

MayaSoft’s MARTA solution offers a comprehensive mobile POS system that includes card acquisition for all types without subscription fees or hardware costs. The solution operates on any NFC-enabled smartphone, making it accessible to a wide range of small businesses. Notably, MARTA can accept online payments even in areas with poor internet connectivity using its USSD transfer method. 

Key features of the program include:

  1. Merchant Aggregation Service: This service includes an instant merchant settlement logic, addressing the issue of long waiting periods for payment clearing by facilitating the advance transfer of POS proceeds to merchants before the clearing process between banks is complete. To date, this is a major barrier to uptake of digital financial services by small businesses.
  2. Credit Assessment Service: This collaboration aims to explore and begin initial development of this service to enhance access to finance for small businesses. It will enable swift credit assessments based on card sales and other data, potentially allowing businesses to obtain tailored working capital with flexible repayment structures aligned with their cash flow in the future. Accion is playing a crucial role in designing the data collection methodology for this service.

The program will reach up to 300,000 small businesses across Uzbekistan, with 12,000 ultimately adopting the MARTA solution by the end of the program period. 

About MayaSoft

MayaSoft, a startup headquartered in Uzbekistan, operates as a licensed Payment Organization regulated by the Central Bank. Specializing in fintech solutions, the company is dedicated to the development, integration, and implementation of cutting-edge contactless payment technologies. Its primary objective is to bolster the payment acceptance infrastructure for small and medium-sized businesses while actively promoting the adoption of cashless payments among cardholders. With a clear mission to serve unbanked and underserved small merchants, MayaSoft offers secure and user-friendly mobile IT solutions. The overarching goal is to empower businesses to seamlessly accept fast and secure payments in any setting.

About Accion

Accion is a global nonprofit on a mission to create a fair and inclusive economy for the nearly two billion people who are failed by the global financial system. We develop and scale responsible digital financial solutions for small business owners, smallholder farmers, and women, so they can make informed decisions and improve their lives. Through targeted investment strategies, advisory solutions, and expert thought leadership, we work with local partners to develop and scale cheaper, more accessible, and customer-friendly financial solutions. Since 1961, Accion has helped build more than 230 financial service providers serving low-income clients in 75 countries, reaching more than 350 million people

We’re glad to partner with the Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth and Accion to promote the MARTA solution to 500,000 small businesses that are eager to digitize and grow their sales across Uzbekistan, particularly those in remote areas with limited access to advanced technologies. Micro and small merchants, and even self-employed individuals, can access the solution free of charge through their smartphones, even where internet connectivity is poor.

Nodir Badriddinov

Founder and CEO of MayaSoft.

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