Buy Unipet gas with your cellphone soon

The content originally appeared on: News Americas Now

Black Immigrant Daily News

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

Pump attendant Denesyia Maharaj fills a vehicle with diesel at the Unipet Gas Station, Southern Main Road, San Fernando on April 19, 2022. – FILE PHOTO/AYANNA KINSALE

Soon, paying only with cash or your debit and credit cards will be a thing of the past at United Independent Petroleum Co (Unipet) gas stations are looking at safe ways for customers to pay with their cellphones.

CEO Dexter Riley said coming out of the pandemic, he and the board were able to digitise some of the company’s internal processes as well as the customer-facing processes.

He was speaking to Business Day at the Energy Conference at Hyatt Regency, Port of Spain in January.

“We started off by looking at the payment-solution area and we saw that there was opportunity to add some value to our customers, since we intimately understood some of the paying issues and some of the potential value that they could get out of it if they had data available to them with good analytics,”

Dexter Riley, CEO of Unipet. –

Riley said because of this, Unipet decided to look for an international partner to bring those ideas to life by developing code with a focus on cybersecurity.

“We looked at a number of companies internationally and so far the most superior proposal was Brain Station 23.”

What is Brain Station 23 and what is the future of Unipet?

Brain Station 23 is a software development company based in Bangladesh that operates in 25 countries globally with the aim to provide tech solutions to companies.

Director and COO MJ Ferdous described the process of working with Unipet as a long journey, because Brain Station 23 had to figure out how to support Unipet in its green-energy move and proposed digital payment system.

“We have done it successfully and we have found a very good partner, because together we can actually do this for other countries in the Caribbean region. We are helping them (Unipet) on their technological transformation, where Unipet is helping accelerate digitisation in other sectors like banks or the government.”

MJ Ferdous, director and COO of Brain Station 23. –

Ferdous further explained what Brain Station 23 does, using the company’s healthcare solution project in Germany as an example.

“We are developing a content-management solution called Adobe Experience Manager (AEM) so the doctors, physicians or pharmacists can get the latest drug information and how to use it.”

He said this will make processes in the healthcare system move faster.

New payment method

As for being able to pay with your cellphone at the gas pumps, Ferdous said, “You don’t need a card to pay, you can just tap your phone and you will automatically get the fuel. You can even buy food or anything from the stores.”

Riley added, “The phone activates the pump itself. Just like how you’d pay at the pump using your card, this time you can use the phone safely, with the right frequencies, to activate the pump and dispenser.

“We also have technology developed with Brain Station 23 that allows the dispenser to recognise a vehicle and allow refueling as well.”

Like Apple Pay, Samsung Wallet or Republic EPay, Unipet will be following suit and is approaching the Central Bank with its fintech concept.

“The pumps connect to our wallets on your cellphone. It charges your wallet as you dispense the fuel and gives you a transaction history on your phone.”

Ferdous added that this will help Unipet manage its transactions and keep track of how much fuel was used per month.

Ensuring the safety of customers

As technology develops, so do hackers, but Ferdous assured customers this will not happen.

“That is 100 per cent sure, because we are not managing the infrastructure environment, it is managed by Microsoft Azure, which is a cloud service. It has the highest level of security protection against any kind of ransomware attack or other attacks.

“There is zero possibility of an attack, because when someone manages the data centre and money by themselves, then it can happen, but not with us, because we also have 24/7 surveillance. So that’s also why we are using the cloud.”

As for attacks on the servers – the programme running the operations – he said the programmers are constantly checking for ethical hacking, so there is no programming loophole. Ethical hacking is the process of detecting vulnerabilities in the programme in the connect of computers that a hacker can easily use to exploit the system.

Brain Station 23 in Bangladesh is one the world’s fastest growing IT services company. –

When to expect these pumps?

Riley said Unipet is still in the approval stages with the Central Bank and once those are completed, these new fuel pumps will be available to the public. He said Unipet needs a licence to work with the desired method of contactless payment.

“We will roll out quickly, but only when we get the licence, and that is something that would be a due process to help us know when.”