CommsMEA Tell me about Luup’s mobile payment system?
It is a brand new universal mobile payments platform, and while the term universal is often over-used we believe ours truly is. The reason for that is it caters for all aspects of the mobile payments world. It has corporate products and services for financial institutions to use, but it also has retail payment propositions for person-to-person payments so that you could use it to pay your bills, check your balance or send money to a friend. The platform also manages an international remittance payment so you can send money abroad. It covers the whole range of services that you expect a mobile payment platform to provide.
CommsMEA What type of companies do you work with?
Financial institutions such as exchange houses and banks. We don’t have restrictions in terms of who we serve. The platform is agnostic in terms of how the monies flow. Our customer base is primarily financial institutions, although we are in discussions with a telecom operator. What we offer is a managed service. We built the platform and run it, but it is run on behalf of the client. So for example, a leading bank in the UAE runs a service off the Luup platform. Their customers can make payments, pay bills and send money abroad from their handset.
CommsMEA How about the security aspect?
It is a bank grade platform so, it has a core banking platform built within it. It is built to the same standards and security, resilience, scalability that a bank would expect of its own operation. It is vital that the levels of security and reliability are first class so that users of the service can have confidence.
It is universal in the sense that it can be integrated with any other platform, and it is not dependent on what mobile network you use or what currency or language you want to operate in. What we have tried to do is take away all of the barriers that prevent financial institutions or mobile network operators from offering mobile payment services to their customers.
CommsMEA How is business in the Middle East?
It is growing. We have got a very strong pipeline in terms of financial institutions who want to introduce mobile payments, banking, and remittancies. We have built an international remittance ecosystem so that migrant workers can be paid straight on to their mobile wallet. They can manage their affairs here and they can also send money home though their handset. We have partnerships with payroll companies, banks and exchange houses, while at the receiving side, we have partnerships so that the recipient can receive a message on their phone that they have money waiting for them, and they can go to a local store and receive it.