21. January 2013–
Rocket Internet-backed mobile payments startup Payleven has today received new funding in "the high single digit USD million dollar amount" coming mostly from an undisclosed new investor. The mysterious new backer joins existing investors New Enterprise Associates, Holtzbrinck Ventures, ru-Net and Rocket Internet.
Payleven is among the many Square-like services in Europe offering a plug 'n' pay app and card reader for independent merchants to turn their smartphone or tablet into a payment terminal, which allows them to accept certain credit/debit cards for payment. Like many of its competitors (iZettle, SumUp and Streetpay), the company charges a transaction fee and utilises a dongle as card reader.
The additional funding will be used to develop its product offerings and accelerate its expansion across Europe and South America.
“We are thrilled to see our investor base grow, which reflects the excitement for the first Chip and PIN mobile point of sale (mPOS) in Continental Europe. We want to remain innovative, develop our product and accelerate the growth of our merchant base. The close partnership we have with our investors is key to achieving this,” said Konstantin Wolff, co-founder and CMO of Payleven.
Last November, Payleven announced the launch of a Visa-compliant trial chip and pin service with German taxi network Taxiverband Berlin Brandenburg. Visa Europe has made it clear to mobile POS companies, by shutting down iZettle's Visa acceptance, that security measures for user authentication must meet standard acceptance requirements. The strategic move has given the company an edge against rivals iZettle and SumUp, which have implemented a cumbersome workaround that requires customers to provide their phone numbers and confirm details via SMS.
In Europe, the mobile POS landscape is becoming increasingly competitive and the company's funding announcement follows SumUp's rapid expansion in Europe and iZettle's launch into Germany with the help of Deutsche Telekom. With payment services offering similar dongles, features and transaction fees, the landgrab for market share continues to heat up.
For related post, check out:
European mobile payments player SumUp expands to France, Belgium and Portugal
Rocket Internet’s Square copycat Payleven signs taxi deal in Berlin
Rocket Internet’s Square clone Payleven cracks “chip-and-PIN ceiling”