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Excl: Mswipe launches mobile PoS service, sees VC interest

Mumbai-based Mswipe Technologies Pvt Ltd is looking to raise $5 million from venture capital funds.

While mSwipe promoter Manish Patel told Techcircle that he is looking to raise around $5 million, one source familiar with the company said that it has already received termsheets from as many as six venture capital funds.

The company received angel funding from private investors including Anand Rathi Financial Services CEO Praveen Chakravarty, Beacon India PE fund MD Deepak Shahdadpuri and one foreign investor last year. Chakravarty, who was also an early investor in mobile advertising firm InMobi, sits on the board of Mswipe.

The company also unveiled Swipe, a mobile-phone based PoS (point of sale) service for small merchants. mSwipe's PoS enables plastic card payments on a mobile phone.

The technology's USP is that it enables such payments on basic feature phones as well, whereas the other services work only on smartphones. Launched in March last year by Manish Patel, the service aims to change the card payment scenario for small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

Boston-based Roam Technologies has given the exclusive license to Mswipe in South Asia and the company has spent last one year getting this product to market. It launched its service in a restricted pilot 3 months ago and just expanded the pilot a month back and already boasts of around 100 merchants on board and a partnership with Prizm Payments and Axis Bank. Though currently the service is available in western India, Patel said it will soon be rolled out across India.

Patel, who is a doctor by profession, founded the product in a bid to look for alternate payment solutions for SMEs when he was running a retail store. The service though available in different packages costs an initial cost of about Rs 2,999, apart from monthly rentals and a transactional fee. As they sign up on on Mswipe's website, the merchants receive a merchant box which contains a mobile phone with the PoS application pre-loaded, swiper and SIM card. The website says that all payments of one day are transferred to the merchant's account the next day.

As of now, there is no other company providing this service in the fledgling market for mobile PoS. Landline PoS is all we see but that service is also popular in urban areas only.

(Edited by Prem Udayabhanu)

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