Japan's first-ever smarphone-based credit card processing service Coiney has just launched today. Instead of conventional credit authorisation terminals (CAT), the company provides merchants with a small attachement that can be connected to an iPhone and enables card processing by swiping their customer's card.
Merchants are not required to pay any installation or registration fee, but there is a 4 percent commission (including the card processing fee and card acquirer's charge) for the purchases made over the platform. For now, it can accept Visa and MasterCard and allows customers to complete their payments by signing their name on the iPhone's display.
Potential users of this service/device are local merchants with less than 10 employees, and door-to-door sales businesses in need of mobile terminals for credit card purchases.
Coiney was founded by ex-Paypal Japan employee Naoko Samata and won the top prize at Rising Expo 2012, a startup showcase competition event held by CyberAgent Ventures last month. She has been looking at payment solutions in other parts of the world, and found that Japanese providers are still behind their counterparts in the US. This motivated her to invent a new product of her own. They also plan to introduce an Android app for the service in 2013.
From the left: Takamasa Matsumoto (software designer), Naoko Samata (CEO/founder), and David Asikin (engineer lead)