The Wirecard Group and MyOrder (a Rabobank company) sought to hammer another nail in the coffin of operator-led mobile payment services with the launch of the wireless equivalent of a shared kitty in the Netherlands.
Named Grouppay (GRPPY), the mobile financial service enables users to place funds into a shared group wallet that can then be used to pay for common expenses including meals, as well as purchasing tickets for music festivals and other events. All users in the group are provided with details of top-ups and expenditure.
"Splitting the bill is always a hassle in groups, a mobile group wallet really solves that problem," Gertjan Rösken, CTO at MyOrder, said.
Wirecard explained that GRPPY is the latest start-up by Rabobank based on MyOrder's platform, for which Wirecard provides mobile wallet infrastructure and technical services. The service is available on all app stores in the Netherlands.
Susanne Steidl, EVP of issuing at Wirecard, said GRPPY fulfils the company's ambition to "support new and innovative companies to bring new mobile payment products to the market."
The German-headquartered electronic payments technology provider is also pleased to "expand our cooperation with MyOrder in the field of FinTech," Steidl added.
In a statement, the company explained that MyOrder provides a bank-independent platform for mobile services. The company was acquired by Rabobank in 2012.
GRPPY launches at a time when many mobile operators are abandoning attempts to grab a slice of the mobile financial services market in the face of competition from services including Apply Pay and Google Wallet.
In the past 12 months, operators including EE, Vodafone UK, TDC, Telenor, Telia, Three Denmark, Verizon Wireless, AT&T Mobility, and T-Mobile US have all exited or sold out of various mobile payment partnerships.
Juniper Research in April explained that mobile operators are increasingly being sidelined in terms of providing the secure element for mobile financial transactions. While that security was initially provided through the SIM card, smartphone vendors are now embedding security features directly into their devices' hardware.
The research company predicted that the value of contactless payments on mobile phones and wearables will hit $95 billion (€84 billion) per year in 2018, compared to $35 billion in 2015.
- see this Wirecard announcement
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