Chang Chew Soon, founder and CEO of Malaysia-based mobile card payment solution Soft Space, whose core product is an m-POS, explained the success of his company in South East Asia. He says that although smartphone penetration in some countries is not high, absolute numbers of devices make the business case.
“If you look at card penetration in Malaysia, we have about 20 million ATM cards out there right now,” Chang explains. “And our Soft Space solution accepts a variety of cards, from ATM to Amex.”
A Soft Space card reader would cost about USD 80. Chang claims that Soft Space currently has the largest client base in Asia right now with USD 1 Bn in transactions in Thailand, 10k readers in Malaysia and 10 banks on-loaded since the launch of the firm in January 2013. The start-up is also present in Australia and New Zealand.
There were two reasons for Soft Space to beat Western rivals: payment behavior in Asia and full EMV accreditation.
The company recently was approved a one-to-one matching loan for MYR 18.4M (USD 5.6M) by the Malaysian Investment Development Authority which will be used to expand to Hong-Kong and Taiwan, to create an e-wallet and to enable contactless payments.
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