Philippine NewsPress Release

Brand & Business: CEO Ofir Eyal leads Viber to super app category with launch of payments service

MANILA, PHILIPPINES — New Rakuten Viber Chief Executive Officer Ofir Eyal is bringing the popular communications app to the fintech category as it’s determined to offer users more than its core messaging and calling features, a critical move to fulfill its vision of becoming a superapp.

Viber is set to roll out the in-app Payments service, allowing users to create a digital wallet within the platform. Payments wallets can be linked to bank accounts as well as Visa and Mastercard to transfer money to other individuals, buy products, and pay bills. Viber will first introduce peer-to-peer transfers, which will be available to users for free. The service will be available in Germany and Greece later this summer, during the first period, Viber will gather user feedback necessary to further improve the product before launching in additional markets.

“In my role as CEO, I am honored to lead and be part of a highly-driven team in Rakuten Viber as we pursue the company’s vision and mission in the face of impending challenges. In addition, we would like to keep Viber’s high standards and innovative spirit when it comes to operating and enhancing the app to improve the user experience and ultimately, become a super app. I will always appreciate and be grateful to employees who are part of the journey to make Viber become what it is today,” Ofir said.

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“I clearly define my role and mission in serving both the organization and our users. This journey can be challenging but Viber and I are more committed than ever to deliver on our technology promise.”

Rakuten Viber’s CEO, who stepped into the role in August last year, has made significant contributions to growing and bringing Viber closer to users throughout the journey of his more than seven-year tenure with the company. During this time, his responsibilities as Rakuten Viber’s vice president of product before being promoted to chief operating officer, include focusing on user experience, customer success, content, and localization.

Recently, Viber’s ongoing advancements have provided features to help maximize the user experience in both business and entertainment, together with encouraging users to communicate with each other. Now occupying Viber’s highest post, Ofir oversees the implementation of the company’s ambitious product development and market expansion efforts. Meanwhile, he looks for new business opportunities as the company continues to distinguish itself as a global industry leader.

Asia-Pacific is currently one of Viber’s highest-growth regions. It grows over 20% annually and continues to innovate partnerships and projects unique to the region. Viber continues to invest in the Asia Pacific region and is set to rapidly grow its user base by producing more country-specific partnerships, localizing strategies and offerings, and providing more benefits to Viber users.

In the Philippines, Viber remains an integral communication platform with a 30% annual growth in active usage, 25% increase in one-to-one messages sent, 39% growth in group calls, and 101% in video calls. It has become a go-to app not only for calling and messaging but also for doing business. Amid a global crisis that has affected micro, small, and medium enterprises or MSMEs, Viber has given them an opportunity to harness the power of conversational commerce through communities and channels that connected small online entrepreneurs to certain hyperlocal or specific interest groups.

With a clear direction on where he wants to take Viber next, Ofir’s leadership is expected to sustain Viber’s continued growth in product and service development and expansion into new markets, as well as entrench Viber as a major and innovative player in the global messaging and app landscape.

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