In many emerging markets there is a black market for money, corruption and fraud. It is for this reason that Mer Group has customized its mobile money platform and added budget managent, transfer and dedicated money solutions in addition to current features like person-to-person, payments and top-up capabilities.
One challenge for countries is by the time money gets from the governemmnt to a school for example, part or much of it is lost. To get around this challenge, Mer Group digitizes the money, then requires multiple authorizations and then the budget gets transferred more securely.
Moreover, the post office can act as an agent registering new merchants and users on the system – this is the case in one customer implementation on the Ivory Coast in Africa.
In this implementation, the money can only be spent at authorized merchants – this provides full transparency to the government.
In other implementations, intitutes or charitable foundations are delivering money to countries in aid and this technology reduces the corruption and money laundering problems typically associated with financial aid.
This is dedicated money – what Nir Flatau the VP of Marketing at the company explains is money which can only be spent in a preauthorized fashion – specific merchants as described above.
He went on to say the booming MVNO market in developed regions can utilize their platform as a service to enable proper billing of their customers. Their cloud-based system allows the MVNO to focus on building their business.
Also, in the M2M space, MNOs and carriers are spending lots of money on management systems but they aren’t all yet monetizing their M2M businesses. In order to assist in this area, they are integrating M2M solutions and building business models which can be provided by their customers.
For example, they worked with a startup which connects to fruit, trees and soil and over the cellular network communicates with an expert who can suggest whether to increase or decrease water and fertilizer levels. This results in increases in yield and conservation of fertilizer and/or water.
This really enables smart farming – more food and greater levels of efficiency. They beleive this is just one case… They think they can take the idea and apply it to toll roads, mobile parking enforcement, asset managent and security/safe cities. This can then be offered to municipalities, enterprises and others.
The company also produces a HetNet solution enabling intelligent transfer to the appropriate radio/wireless technology.
There are three main reasons to work with the company according to Flatau:
- Local presence in 40 countries around the world – Latin America, Africa, APAC, etc.
- They act as a smart integrator – they have experience in building smart networks and they have connected to many networks already.
- They are very innovative – they see the innovations coming out of Israel and find and connect them in order to help carriers generate ROI.