When Payment Processing Becomes A Commodity

payments processing, banking One of the big subjects of discussion in the banking industry earlier this year was the publication of the Millennial Disruption Index, stating that millennials view banks as irrelevant and placing traditional retail banking at the highest risk of disruption compared to other B2C industries. Accenture’s Banking 2020 report confirms this and draws a parallel to the challenges the… Read More


Y Combinator-Backed Kash Lets Retailers Offer Starbucks-Like Mobile Payments While Cutting Out Credit Cards

kash If you’ve been to a Starbucks in the past year or so, it’s almost guaranteed you’ve seen someone in line pay with their smartphone by opening the Starbucks app and holding a bar code up to a scanner. Kash is hoping to bring the same experience to other retailers and small businesses while cutting out one of their biggest costs: credit card fees. Read More



Isis Mobile Wallet Rebrands To Distance Itself From Militant Group ISIS

isis Isis, the mobile wallet platform backed by AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon here in the U.S., has decided to rebrand after its name became synonymous with “ISIS,” an Islamic militant group linked to sectarian violence against civilians and government forces in Iraq and Syria, the company is announcing today. That the two organizations share a name is entirely coincidental, but… Read More


Get Paid: GoDaddy Links With PayPal, Dwolla, Stripe For A Mobile & Web Payment Service

4222474443_a5e2ebaabe_b As GoDaddy gears up for a $100 million IPO, the domain and web services company is adding on more features that will help it make more profitable revenues from its 12 million small-business customers. The latest of these puts GoDaddy further into the world of e-commerce. Today, it is launching “Get Paid,” a new online and mobile payments service created with existing… Read More


Apple Could Finally Adopt NFC On iPhone For Mobile Payment Plans And Touch ID

apple osaka store Apple’s 2014 roadmap was laid out in pretty considerable detail by KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo earlier this week in an investor note, and while ordinarily analyst predictions aren’t worth the paper they’re printed on, Kuo has a solid track record of actually getting things right. Among Kuo’s predictions are larger iPhones, a Retina MacBook Air, improved Apple TV,… Read More


With $8M In Fresh Funding, Ezetap Is More Than Just A Square For Emerging Markets

photo-11There are almost 900 million active cell-phone users in India now, and from newer startups to some of the biggest companies in the world, everybody is chasing the next mobile disruption that could potentially result in a business model for all of the emerging markets. One such startup is Ezetap, a mobile payment company backed by some of the biggest names in the VC industry, including Chamath Palihapitiya, a former Facebook executive and founder of Social+Capital Partnership, and Angelprime, an Indian seed fund run by serial entrepreneurs. Today, Ezetap is raising $8 million in Series B funding led by Helion Advisors, Social+Capital and Berggruen Holdings. This round takes the total fund raised by Ezetap to around $11.5 million (including $3.5 million it had raised in Series A funding in November 2012). The fresh capital will be used to expand Ezetap in Asia-Pacific, Middle East and Africa.  Ezetap is much like Square, at least in terms of the basic model. It uses a rectangular device that can turn any mobile phone into a point-of-sales terminal when plugged in. The device including a card reader and chip, costs around $50, and Ezetap has been able to sell around 12,000 of them to date. The startup is aiming to have over 100,000 such devices installed across Asia-Pacific, Africa and Middle East in a year. “From day one, we wanted to go global and really felt that mobile payments in general is a great opportunity for emerging markets. There’s disparity in cash versus electronic payments leading to the challenges of financial inclusion,” Abhijit Bose, CEO of Ezetap, told TechCrunch. Ezetap was incubated in 2011 by Angelprime, a $10 million seed fund backed by Mayfield Fund, Palihapitiya and several others in the Silicon Valley. It’s run by three veteran entrepreneurs — Sanjay Swamy, Shripati Acharya and Bala Parthasarathy. With the latest round, Ashish Gupta of Helion is joining the startup’s board. Helion is an India focused, $600 million fund.  Ezetap is the second attempt by Abhijit and Sanjay to build a mobile payment company in India. In 2006, Sanjay was the CEO of mChek which had raised around $10 million by 2009, and Abhijit worked with another venture-funded payment startup called Ngpay.  Back then, mChek and several others fizzled out because of several challenges. “I believe there was nothing wrong with mobile payment back then, it was just the timing,” said Bose. Indeed, the environment has changed