European mobile payment solution company MPowa announced that it is looking at Brazil as a potential key market, and it plans to start business there through partners. The company sees a strong demand in Brazil as well as in other South American countries, and it expects the regional market to be one of the fastest adopters of its mobile payment technology.
Mobile payment services are just beginning in Brazil, which can be both an opportunity and a challenge for those betting on the country. Dan Wagner, CEO and chairman of mPowa, told RCR Wireless News that there are a number of different m-payment business models currently being developed and tested in the United States and Europe. “But most are limited either by the network or verification technology they use, or by the acquirers or card companies who will allow their usage,” he said. “It is not yet clear which of these models will win the day in a hotly contested market.”
For the Latin American region, mPowa aims to replicate its recently signed deal with First National Bank, the third largest bank in South Africa, to supply devices and payment infrastructure. “This is a multimillion-dollar deal under the terms of which mPowa will white-label its technology for the bank to provide to its customers in South Africa and a number of other countries across Africa,” Wagner explained.
The mPowa CEO said that many companies have shown interest. “Beside the First National Bank deal, we have received hundreds of requests from banks, telecoms and retailers around the globe who are interested in purchasing mPowa’s technology to offer to their customers,” he said.
The company sees South America as one of the fastest expanding markets for mobile technology. “The World Bank reported last year that 98% of the Latin American population has a mobile cell signal and that 84% of Latin American households subscribe to some type of mobile service. This is all that is required for mPowa’s technology to operate,” Wagner said.
Based on chip and PIN technology, mPowa’s service consists of a mobile phone app and a card reader that allows companies to accept mobile credit card payments using their mobile phone as an electronic till. It includes a mobile phone app and a reader which connects to a smartphone or mobile device via Bluetooth.