After surveying over 6,000 entrepreneurs and small businesses in August and September, Brazil’s small business support association Sebrae and the country’s official statistics agency IBGE found that the majority have PIX as their primary means of receiving payments.
The Brazilian instant payment system — launched in November 2020 and currently used by more than half of the population — accounts for 42 percent of payments received by small business owners, beating cash and credit and debit cards.
PIX’s share in payments received by very small businesses is even more significant; 51 percent say it is the primary payment method they use for sales.
At the beginning of the year, Sebrae had already detected that nine out of ten small businesses were accepting payments via PIX. The association’s president, Carlos Melles, emphasized that this is because PIX is “an agile and cheaper system,” which does not burden consumers or charge fees, and it “can be used 24/7.”
In March this year, an article signed by Central Bank economists — Angelo Duarte, head of the Central Bank’s competition and financial market structure department, and Priscilla Koo Wilkens, from the same team — and experts from the Bank for International Settlements (BIS), confirmed that PIX is “much cheaper” for merchants than card payments in general.
At the time, PIX had an average cost of 0.22 percent per transaction for Brazilian merchants. In contrast, debit cards cost a little more, 1%, and credit cards, 2.2%. Brazil’s instant payments system is also more competitive than the credit card industry in the U.S. (with a 1.7% average rate), Canada (1.5%), and the European Union (0.3%), added the economists.