Monitise enters five-year “mobile money” tie-up with Telefónica Digital

Monitise, the UK-based mobile banking and m-commerce software vendor, has entered a five-year agreement with Telefónica Digital, the innovation wing of the European telecommunication giant, to becomes its preferred supplier for "mobile money" solutions. 

It is the company's first major partnership with a telecommunications provider. The deal will be worth somewhere in the region of €45 million over the five years. 

"Monitise will take the lead in developing a technology platform on which our mobile wallet services sit," a Telefónica Digital spokesperson told Information Age. "We'll be leveraging Monitise's expertise in areas including mobile banking, mobile payments and mobile commerce."

"We chose Monitise because they have a proven capability in delivering large scale, multi-country, secure bank-grade mobile services for payments and m-commerce," the spokesperson added.

The initial focus of the partnership will be the UK market, but may be extended into other territories. Monitise expects to make most of the money from "user-generated revenue" – in other words, taking a cut of the mobile payment transaction fees. 

Monitise made its name as a mobile banking application supplier, with clients including HSBC and Lloyds Banking Group. Last year, the company raised £100 million to fund its move into the mobile money space. It spent £15 million in January on taking full control of Mobile Money Network, a joint venture between Monitise and US electronics retailer Best Buy. 

In March, Monitise signed a three-year partnership with payments processing giant Visa Europe, under which Visa will license Monitise's technology. 

And just last week, it announced a partnership with Lloyds Banking Group to develop a suite of mobile card acceptance solutions for merchants and small businesses. 

In the six months ending 31 December 2012, Monitise's revenues rose 63% to £27.8 million. Its revenue target for the full financial year is £70 million, up nearly 100% from last year. 

Pete Swabey

Pete Swabey

Pete was Editor of Information Age and head of technology research for Vitesse Media plc from 2005 to 2013, before moving on to be Senior Editor and then Editorial Director at The Economist Intelligence...

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