Acquiring

Mozido, Mo’ Money, Mo’ Acquisitions

Mozido is on a roll.

In December 2014, the cloud platform mobile payments and retail engagement solutions provider made the significant acquisition of CorFire. And last week, (Feb. 10), it announced that it had acquired PayEase. Although Mozido’s Founder and Chairman of Global Strategic Initiatives, Michael Liberty would not disclose nor confirm the details of the transaction nor its purchase price, a look at the public filings suggest a purchase price in the neighborhood of $750M – consisting of $125M in cash and $625M in Mozido stock – with a pre-money valuation for Mozido slightly north of $5.7B.

But Liberty did share some of the reasons as to why PayEase, why now, and why so soon after the big CorFire acquisition.

To explain the appeal of China, Liberty points to what Alibaba and Alipay have accomplished in the country as an illustration of just how big the market is there. In a word, it’s gigantic, and just getting started.

And, given that cross-border capabilities are of critical importance to merchants and companies from America, Mozido and PayEase, says Liberty, saw a mutually beneficial opportunity to bring the mobile lifestyle services of the former to a marketplace where the latter had a strong presence – that being Asia.

While acknowledging that the transaction was a complex one, it benefited from two things. First, the Beijing government is a financial partner of PayEase. As a result, explains Liberty, Mozido and its legal counsel “had great guidance [from the] inside” in adhering to all regulations during the year-long process. And, second, Liberty has known the company and its founders for more than a decade and found that now was the time that both companies could be “better together.”

But the big benefit is to merchants which want an easy way to do business with Chinese consumers. Liberty says that now that PayEase is a part of Mozido, merchants outside of China will have a gateway into the country’s market, making it, in Liberty’s estimation as easy for merchants to do business in China as it is anywhere else.

In fact, Liberty believes that Mozido is in a “market-leading” position to bring companies into the Chinese market in a compliant manner and with scale operation. He told Webster that PayEase already exclusively processes the roughly 60 million iTunes accounts for Apple in China and is now, Liberty says, “expanding [its] relationship[s] with many other companies” from the U.S., including Amazon and others to be announced.

But that seems to be the starting point.

Liberty expects “explosive growth” in China, throughout Indonesia – where Liberty says Mozido is “about to announce a big initiative” – as well as the Middle East, India and Africa. Liberty describes the combination of Mozido’s Host Card Emulation and tokenization deliverance with CorFire’s NFC capabilities as an “unmatched product service offering.” The business model coming to fruition as a result, says Liberty, is for Mozido to “be able to go into undeveloped countries and bring the…financially disenfranchised people of the world into an ecosystem of hope, opportunity, financial fairness and, ultimately, commerce.”

“And of course,” adds Liberty, “the U.S.,” where Mozido is doing “some pretty exciting things.”

Webster joked with Liberty that he and Mozido seem to be on a course where a big acquisition is announced every other month. So, naturally, Webster wondered what April might bring.

Liberty just laughed and said “stay tuned.” He hinted that Mozido is positioned to make a “major play in the United States of America” and soon.

April, after all, is right around the corner.

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