Mobile Payments in Switzerland: Mobino & Muume

Mobile Payments in Switzerland: Mobino & Muume

by September 21, 2015

In Switzerland, there are several payment apps you can choose from to send money to your friends or purchase items at your local grocery store.

SwissFintech, a non-profit organization seeking to help foster a prosperous ecosystem for startups, reports 23 different startups that focus on payment services.

But the industry is not limited to startups, as bank and financial institutions are also tapping into the juicy market with products such as Paymit, developed by Six/UBS, or MobilePay P2P, developed by Migros Bank.

Within this extensive list of payment services, two mobile payment startups, namely Mobino and Muume, are looking to have a slice of the cake.

Peer-to-peer money transfers

mobinoSimilarly to MobilePay and Paymit, Geneva-based Mobino has developed a mobile payment platform that allows users to make peer-to-peer money transfers to their friends by simply choosing a contact or entering a mobile phone number.

Once the payment is sent, the recipient receives a confirmation SMS that indicates that his or her Mobino account has been credited with the relevant amount.

One rather unique particularity of Mobino, is that the service can be used with a regular phone by calling a voice interface on a local number in your country.

“You don’t need to give access to your bank account, the app can function like a prepaid wallet,” Mobino’s founder, Jean-François Groff explained.

“We worked a lot on simplifying the registering process and increasing the speed of payments.”

Additionally, Mobino also provides a merchants solution for businesses operating in the European Union, Switzerland and Norway, costing as little as 1%.

To add Mobino as a payment method, merchants first need to sign an agreement with the company. Then, they need to download the app, whether on a mobile phone or a tablet, to start accepting payments through Mobino. And that’s pretty much it.

‘Enhanced functionalities’ for merchants

Unlike most of the startups that are targeting the masses, Muume particularly targets merchants.

muume qr codeFounded in November 2013, Muume is a Swiss startup that offers a cloud-based mobile payments system that allows users to both pay at online and brick-and-mortar businesses.

When going shopping, customers only need to scan a QR code on the product or bill, verify the price and validate. The money is then taken directly from the user’s digital wallet.

Apart from providing an easy way for customers to pay for goods and services, Muume also offers “enhanced functionalities” for merchants in the area of loyalty, couponing, gamification and merchant POS, and also has its very own “shopping mall.”

“We are more social [than our competitors],” Nick Mirza, Sales Manager at Muume, claims.

“We are involved in the social aspect before the payment is made, when the payment is made, and after the payment is made.”

Composed of more than 80 experts and developers, Muume seeks to offer the “fastest possible liquidity for sellers” while “making payments as easy as possible for customers.”

In addition to allowing contactless payments via QR codes, merchants can also request a Muume card reader and enable customers to pay using a credit card.

Increasing competition

In Switzerland but also in all other parts of the world, mobile payment apps have considerably increased in number during the past few years. Startups but also banks and giant tech firms are all tapping into this emerging trend.

However, given the relatively small size of the Swiss market as well as the increasing number of local competitors, many startups are having a hard time scaling.

Zurich-based Klimpr, a peer-to-peer money transfer service, has announced last week it had stopped operating, citing fierce competition with “very big players,” making it “increasingly difficult [for the startup] to survive in this market environment.”


Image credit: Pixabay.