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Kiwi Smartpay firm moves in on Aussie monopoly

Kiwi Smartpay firm moves in on Aussie monopoly

(2 July 2012 – New Zealand) Kiwi payment terminal company Smartpay, is looking to move in on the banks’ monopoly over point of sale payment technology in Australia. At a special shareholders meeting in Auckland last week, Smartpay's investors voted to accept a new NZ$25 million (A$19.5 million) banking facility with ASB in order to return the company's cashflows to positive territory.

Smartpay also issued NZ$13.5 million worth of new shares, at 11.5 cents each, in a capital raising which the new debt facility was conditional on.

Chief executive Bradley Gerdis, who has been in the top job about six months, said Australian banks were already passing business to Smartpay because it specialised in one of the few parts of the banking value chain that banks were willing to outsource.

Smartpay's founding director and 13.3 percent shareholder Murray Henshall said he was pleased with the pair's ability to secure interest in Australia and believed the company would now blossom.

Gerdis said banks were getting more demand from their customers for innovative payment products and software that they weren't able to provide adequately.

'They're passing us business, they have merchants who may be existing customers with existing terminals who've gone to the banks and said, 'Look, we want this functionality through our payments terminal'.

'The bank puts it up the chain, but their guys can't or won't do it and it gets shifted to us.'

Smartpay already had over 11,000 terminals in Australia, including 7000 in taxis, but the total market numbered about 800,000 terminals, Gerdis said.
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