International

Swiss Banks Eye Retail Mobile Payments Collaboration

Who says mobile payments always have to be a competition?

The contrary notion — or, at least, the consideration of it — appears to apply in Switzerland, where, according to Reuters, the country’s five biggest banks are in discussions with top retailers regarding the development of a joint mobile payments platform that would be implemented nationwide.

The financial infrastructure group SIX is involved in talks with retailers Coop, Migros and Swisscom, with the goal being to create a pan-Swiss digital payment system for consumers.

Reuters refers to a joint statement made yesterday (March 30) by the banks UBS, Credit Suisse, PostFinance, Raiffeisen and ZKB indicating that all involved parties expect to produce some form of initial results from the talks by early May. It was also expressed that whatever digital platform may emerge from the discussions will be open to additional partners.

In the meantime, PostFinance already has its own mobile payment system — called Twint, notes Finextra — in the Swiss market, while SIX’s mobile payment system, Paymit, is in use by UBS, ZKB and Swisscom (likewise according to Finextra).

Reuters adds that continued development work on both of these offerings will proceed at the same time that the banks are involved in the talks regarding a joint mobile payments platform for Switzerland — talks spurned in part, posits Finextra, by a desire shared by the country’s companies to get out in front of possible competition in the form of mobile payments entries from major players, like Apple, Google and Samsung.

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