VWire, the local mobile commerce provider, recently launched its mobile commerce offering to South Africans, with plans to launch in the US shortly. James Byler has been appointed as CEO of US operations, while Brandon Sandiford is MD of the local company and Neil Davis is chief technical officer.
The company’s mobile commerce platform is suited to any size organisation. It enables convenient credit card and financial payment services via any cellphone and is used by hundreds of South African users and companies, including Tupperware SA, Aurora Jewellery and Dream Vacations. The expected local market is 100 000 users. In the US, it is targeting a user base of more than a million.
“Mobile technology has become a reliable way to transact anywhere and at any time,” Sandiford says. “There is untapped value in enabling people to perform banking transactions from any location. It empowers them to conclude non-cash business and so increase their income. Geography and access to costly banking facilities need no longer be hurdles for street-side vendors, entrepreneurs, one-man businesses or sales forces.”
VWire operates under a patent licensed from a wholly owned subsidiary of Mustek; and is Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCIDSS)-certified in compliance with Visa, MasterCard, Diners Club, American Express, JCB and Discover Card security standards.
Certified for the Central Europe, Middle East and Africa region, VWire is required to undergo reassessments every three months. Certification is per server location, with VWire currently servicing its customers from six local servers.
“Security is a major concern in light of fraudulent activities and increasing reports of identity theft,” Sandiford says. “People must be confident that any transactions they perform in a bank, on the Internet, via the phone or on a mobile device are secure. Both the patent and the certification are indicators of how seriously we take the protection of our clients.”
The versatility of VWire’s mobile commerce platform has been demonstrated by Samantha Clarke of Tupperware South Africa, who used a conventional cellphone to perform a secure transaction at the summit of Mt Kilimanjaro.