DBS/POSB and MOE partner to broaden access to digital payments in schools

Singapore.13 Apr 2022

The three-year MOU will expand the POSB Smart Buddy programme across all junior colleges/Millennia Institute, secondary and primary schools by 2025

DBS/POSB will install tap-and-pay terminals for students to make e-payments via POSB Smart Buddy cards and smartwatches, as well as EZ-Link cards

Singapore, 13 Apr 2022 - DBS/POSB and the Ministry of Education (MOE) today announced a three-year Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to widen the access to contactless and digital payments, in all junior colleges/Millennia Institute, secondary and primary schools in Singapore.

Students at Xishan Primary School use their POSB Smart Buddy watches and EZ-link cards to pay for meals and bookstore buys

DBS/POSB will install digital payment infrastructure, including tap-and-pay terminals, in school canteens and bookstores. The tap-and-pay terminals to be installed can accept payments made through POSB Smart Buddy smartwatches or cards, as well as other payment modes, such as the School Smart Card and EZ-Link Card.

Student making a purchase at a POSB tap-and-pay terminal at Xishan Primary School's bookstore.

Student at Xishan Primary School making payment for purchase at the canteen.
Mr Jeremy Soo, Managing Director and Head of Consumer Banking Group (Singapore), DBS Bank, said: “It is incumbent on us to ensure that no one is left behind in this digital age. The POSB Smart Buddy programme was designed to make digital payments and financial literacy simple, seamless, and accessible to all. Through this partnership with MOE, we aim to give every student the option to familiarise themselves with using digital payments in their everyday lives, while learning how to cultivate prudent savings and spending habits. We believe these skills will provide a solid foundation for achieving financial wellness when they transition to the next stage of their lives.”

Mr Clarence Tang, Divisional Director, Finance and Procurement Division, MOE, said: “MOE recognises the growing use of e-payment in our society. Having a cashless option in schools will provide students with an environment to use e-payment safely while enjoying the convenience and benefits of going cashless, such as faster transactions when making purchases.”

The POSB Smart Buddy Programme was launched in 2017 and is the world’s first integrated in-school wearable digital savings and payment programme. Under the Programme, students and their parents can track their spending and saving patterns via the POSB Smart Buddy app. Students can also use the app to set savings goals, while parents can manage their child’s spending by setting daily allowance limits and viewing their child’s purchases in real-time. Since the founding of the programme, the bank has been collaborating with participating schools to provide a more integrated e-payment experience, such as using POSB Smart Buddy to assist schools in administering meal subsidies to students on financial assistance. Today, some 40,000 students from about 80 primary and secondary schools are using POSB Smart Buddy smartwatches and applicable cards to make e-payments in schools.

In a DBS/POSB survey of more than 600 parents, more than 65% of respondents said POSB Smart Buddy has helped their children save and manage their expenses better. More than 70% of respondents also found that POSB Smart Buddy was a useful tool to help educate their children about savings and expenditure. In addition, more than 90% of parents surveyed believed that it was important for their children to be familiar with using digital tools for daily activities as the world becomes increasingly digitalised.


About DBS
DBS is a leading financial services group in Asia with a presence in 18 markets. Headquartered and listed in Singapore, DBS is in the three key Asian axes of growth: Greater China, Southeast Asia and South Asia. The bank's "AA-" and "Aa1" credit ratings are among the highest in the world.

Recognised for its global leadership, DBS has been named “World’s Best Bank” by Euromoney, “Global Bank of the Year” by The Banker and “Best Bank in the World” by Global Finance. The bank is at the forefront of leveraging digital technology to shape the future of banking, having been named “World’s Best Digital Bank” by Euromoney and the world’s “Most Innovative in Digital Banking” by The Banker. In addition, DBS has been accorded the “Safest Bank in Asia” award by Global Finance for 13 consecutive years from 2009 to 2021.

DBS provides a full range of services in consumer, SME and corporate banking. As a bank born and bred in Asia, DBS understands the intricacies of doing business in the region’s most dynamic markets. DBS is committed to building lasting relationships with customers, and positively impacting communities through supporting social enterprises, as it banks the Asian way. It has also established a SGD 50 million foundation to strengthen its corporate social responsibility efforts in Singapore and across Asia.

With its extensive network of operations in Asia and emphasis on engaging and empowering its staff, DBS presents exciting career opportunities. For more information, please visitwww.dbs.com.

About the Ministry of Education
The Ministry of Education (MOE) formulates and implements education policies on education structure, curriculum, pedagogy, and assessment. It oversees the management and development of Government-funded schools, and the Institute of Technical Education, polytechnics and universities. More information on MOE can be found atwww.moe.gov.sg.