Where it's based: Sausalito,
When it was founded: 2004
Why it's fierce: mFoundry is winning over the mobile banking market
one financial institution at a time: Last year it worked with Citibank to take
its services to the mobile platform and this year will bring mFoundry's total up
to 15 or 20 banks. It's no wonder mFoundry is becoming the platform for mobile
banking: Motorola and PayPal are among its investors. The startup's partnership
with PayPal puts it in position to take on the peer-to-peer money transfer
market in the U.S. with carrier partners like Sprint Nextel. mFoundry is also
one of the few companies in the mobile financial services sector to offer up a
software development kit (SDK) for developers looking to leverage its platform.
What to look for: National Cash Registers (NCR) is another key investor for mFoundry-and one that signals the next big market for the startup: near field communications. NCR will be instrumental in helping mFoundry break into the near field communications game because NCR is one of the biggest hardware providers for point-of-sale terminals. mFoundry, however, has no plans to go for an initial public offering, but expect any company looking to compete with Qualcomm, which recently acquired mFoundry competitor Firethorn, to snap up mFoundry.