Kalixa Group unveils “disruptive” payments tools
Payments company Kalixa Group has launched a set of tools including an mPOS, e-wallet and acceptance kit, which it says will disrupt the global payments market in Europe, the Americas, Asia Pacific and the Middle East.
The tools consist of Kalixa Pro, a chip and PIN-based mobile point of sale device linked to the Kalixa e-wallet; Kalixa Pay, the e-wallet itself; and Kalixa Accept, a payment processing tool that is designed to help businesses accept online payments. The aim is to provide a toolset that covers the payments chain and make it simpler.
“Most merchants and consumers don’t know that up to ten different companies are involved in making or accepting a single payment, with each one taking a cut and expecting a return,” said Ed Chandler, chief executive of Kalixa Group. “This is adding unnecessary cost, complexity and risk to merchant and consumer payments. In times of austerity, businesses with shrinking margins and consumers with lighter wallets simply cannot go on paying over the odds. Kalixa is here to disrupt this scenario. We intend to trim the fat by removing the excess links in the value chain to make payments simple, seamless and secure.”
The e-wallet has a prepaid MasterCard that can be used with mobile phones and tablets. The card draws funds directly from the e-wallet, so consumers can pay with their wallet either online or on the high street. Meanwhile the mPOS should allow merchants to pay suppliers, transfer funds and better manage their money.
Recent months have seen the launch of several tools aimed at the democratisation of cheap card payments and the reduction of cost for merchants. In February, payment provider PayPal launched a card reader device that handles Chip & PIN and PayPal payments in Europe. The same month, Spanish bank Banco Santander signed a deal with iZettle, a fledgling Swedish payments specialist that focuses on ‘social’ payments. The two companies plan to distribute mini chip-card readers to small-scale merchants. The iZettle chip and PIN reader costs £49. The user then downloads a free app to accept the payment via Bluetooth. By comparison, a merchant could buy a standard countertop chip and PIN reader from another provider for £16.99 per month, which would amount to £203.88 per year.
Based in Vienna and London, Kalixa began in 2001 as the payments division of a large online merchant. Last year the company processed transactions worth €2.6 billion. The Kalixa prepaid card currently has 150,000 users in Europe.