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Contxto – Here’s a double whammy for Brazilian fintech unicorn, EBANX. The financial service guru recently acquired São Paulo-based fintech, JoyPay, in addition to partnering with a U.K. travel platform, CellPoint Digital.
The joyride continues
While the amount this unicorn shelled out for JoyPay is undisclosed, what is official is this acquisition will be used to expand EBANX Pay. Specifically, it enhances the fintech giant’s strategy to grow its services in digital payments and QR code transactions at physical stores. This is all thanks to its new acquisition’s payment terminal solution.
EBANX now owns all of JoyPay’s shares, which will be placed in a different structure from the parent company. Meanwhile, JoyPay’s founders shall be integrated into the new framework.
Founded in 2016, JoyPay was well-established in the Brazilian fintech market before EBANX came along. With around 2,000 customers, it was already present in four states: São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Pernambuco, and Rio Grande do Norte. The startup also offers an accounts receivable (AR) system that helps small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to better handle their books.
This acquisition may also be a way to give EBANX a stake in the card machine competition in the face of other players like Brazilian fintech Stone who are also moving in on SMEs.
CellPoint Digital plays Latin American startup
Also on the menu is a new collaboration between EBANX and CellPoint Digital, a digital travel merchant based in the United Kingdom. Following this partnership, now CellPoint partners can look forward to utilizing EBANX’s various payment options. Less bureaucracy and fees mean that travel companies seeking to enter the Latin American venture capital scene will be better able to find success in the region.
After all, one of the most prominent challenges in this vertical industry is a lackluster payment culture. That’s to say, everyone does payments differently. On top of being cash-dependent in many parts, Latin American finances are also fragmented with an assortment of local cards or channels, whether that be OXXO in Mexico, Rapipago in Argentina, etc.
Payment issues in Latin America
While only 113 million people out of 650 million reportedly have credit cards, another layer of complexity is that every country enforces different rules and regulations. This is something that many, including Matthew Nutting, head of travel for EBANX, can attest to detest.
“Customers in Latin America use a multitude of specific payment methods and there are specific regulations in each market,” said Mr Nutting. To solve this, EBANX consolidates various payment channels into one streamlined platform.
“Over the years, we have built a unique payment network that includes the most popular payment methods and all the major banks in the region,” added Nutting. “So, we are delighted to combine our capabilities with CellPoint Digital’s payment platform to offer the best payment options to travel merchants in the region.”
All the while, travel companies often accrue high international fees if they don’t have accounts with local banks. Ultimately, this makes EBANX’s financial solution all the more applicable for this vertical industry, providing convenience and ease for those wanting to compete in the Latin American ecosystem.
In the words of Noel Connolly, SVP Global Head of Sales and Partnerships at CellPoint, this is exactly what the company hopes for.
“We are committed to offering the most efficient payment solutions in each region, and EBANX is an ideal partner for Latin America,” said Connolly, whose company works closely with airlines, travel merchants, and their customers. “With EBANX’s payment options in our ecosystem, travel merchants can offer the preferred payment methods in each Latin American country and implement fast local acquirers.”
Personally, this news development gives hope in times of surging nationalism and borderline xenophobic attitudes. In a world where people are progressively becoming aggressive about protecting their borders from “outside influence,” it’s reassuring to see that at least digital payments can persist without borders serving as a hindrance.