Monitise targets Turkish mobile money
Mobile money firm Monitise has acquired Pozitron Yazilim, an Istanbul-based mobile technology specialist, in a £24 million all-shares deal that highlights the growing demand for mobile financial services in the eastern Mediterranean’s largest market.
Pozitron was created by chief executive and Turkish entrepreneur Fatih İşbecer in 2000.The company counts Turkey’s largest bank Türkiye İş Bankası among its customers, as well as the country’s national payments switch BKM, and well-known Yapı Kredi, the fourth-largest private bank in Turkey. In the Middle East, Pozitron’s customers include ANB, one of the largest 15 banks in the Middle East, and QIB, the largest Islamic bank in Qatar.
The company was rated as one of the top 10 fastest growing businesses in Turkey by Deloitte. It also has customers in telecoms, retail and pharmaceuticals, including Turkish Airlines, eBay, ING, TEB, GlaxoSmithKline and Turkey’s equivalent of Amazon, called Hepsiburada.com.
“When we began putting mobile at the heart of our commercial focus nine years ago, we had a vision for how innovative design and ease-of-use could change how people manage their money on the move,” said İşbecer. “Joining Monitise accelerates that vision and gives us access to the Group’s unrivalled technologies and expertise. We look forward to being part of the Monitise team as demand grows for mobile money solutions.”
The business will now report to Peter Radcliffe, president international at Monitise. “Banks, processors, telcos and retailers all need to create secure, interoperable mobile money services which defend them against disintermediation, generate new revenue opportunities and enable them to play a wider role in their customers’ lives,” said Radcliffe. “Monitise and Pozitron have a common vision: to help these businesses navigate their way through the mobile money landscape. This deal is an important step in that journey.”
Turkey has seen several significant developments in recent months. In December, Turkey’s Garanti Bank and mobile operator Turkcell partnered with Visa Europe in a deal aimed at bringing the Turkcell mobile wallet to more consumers in Turkey.
Meanwhile in January, MasterCard acquired Turkish payments provider Provus in a deal that the firm described as “very exciting”; they identified Turkey as a “growing market” and said the deal would increase processing presence in a “high growth” payments market. Founded in 2001, Istanbul-based Provus mainly specialises in issuing and acquirer processing, as well as prepaid solutions and ATM processing services. The company’s clients include Turkish banks, telecoms service providers and retailers.
“This acquisition of Pozitron further reinforces our leading position as a global technology enabler at the heart of the mobile money ecosystem,” said Alastair Lukies, group chief executive at Monitise. “It comes at a time when we are seeing increasing demand for interoperable mobile money services as payments become more digital by the day, not only in Turkey, Europe and the Middle East but also around the world.”