The French operators Bouygues, Orange and SFR have teamed up in a joint mobile payments venture called Buyster that will allow French consumers to purchase items online using their mobile phones.
The three operators have joined with Atos Origin, a computer services group, to form Buyster in an attempt to combat the growth of payment services provided by Ebay's PayPal and Google's Checkout.
Announcing the launch of the jointly-owned Buyster, its CEO, Eric Gontier, was reported by Finextra as saying: "Thanks to this alliance, we are setting out our ambition to become a key player in e-commerce payment and the leading company in France for m-commerce; a market with strong potential. Over the next five years, we are counting on a share of the m-commerce market representing 10 per cent of the turnover for e-commerce with an estimated amount of just over €6 billion."
French consumers will be able to sign up to use Buyster for free, and, by linking their bank cards to their mobile phone number, make purchases using the phones' number and a confidential code provided by Buyster.
Buyster has managed to attract online retailers Aquarelle, Brandalley, Darty and Rue du Commerce as launch partners, and will be made available to the 50 million subscribers connected to the three operators. While Buyster will focus on the French market, Laurent Bailly, the company's head of marketing, told the Financial Times it could be expanded to other European countries through a licence agreement.
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