Accenture (NYSE: ACN) has announced a new secure, high-speed, high-volume mobile financial transaction software solution for telecommunications service providers and large banks. The mobile money management solution allows firms to reach customers through existing mobile operator networks, web and Internet channels and mobile devices, regardless of the device their customers prefer to use.
It also allows customers to conduct traditional banking transactions, automatically adjusts to fluctuations in network traffic, such as sudden peaks of traffic at the beginning of a business day, and can facilitate thousands of simultaneous transactions. Since it uses "cloud-like" technology, the solution can be launched quickly and economically and scales easily. Customers can be segmented by brand, product or language. The solution is now available worldwide, and is a key element in Accenture's focus on mobility services.
"Mobile operators and banks are facing increasing pressure to provide mobile money services on mobile phones to all users," said Andy Zimmerman, global managing director of Mobility Services at Accenture. "If they do not provide these services they risk losing subscribers and being eliminated from the payment process. Accenture's communications industry experience uniquely positions us to support businesses that want to get into the kind of high-volume mobile money applications that can contribute significantly to their customer service and help generate new revenue streams."
The mobile money management solution makes it possible to process micropayments in real time, which helps companies take advantage of new business models, while potentially opening new streams of revenue. Micropayments are used to process small transaction amounts that would otherwise severely limit profit, or even cost more than the actual product if processed as traditional card transactions.
This type of payment is typically used by Internet merchants who sell content - or other intangible goods - that cost between a few cents and a few dollars each, such as music, pay-per-play games, newspapers, articles, reports, small computer programs, tickets and postcards.
The mobile money management solution incorporates the Fundamo Enterprise Mobile Financial Services (EMFS) platform and combines it with Accenture's Service Delivery Platform (SDP). Mobile money management is available from Accenture Mobility Operated Services, an Accenture business unit which provides services for mobile operators, financial institutions and large retailers to help enable new, revenue-generating services delivered through mobile channels, such as ticketing, loyalty, mobile marketing and mobile money.
Fundamo is the world's largest specialist mobile financial services provider. Fundamo's EMFS platform is powered by technology that already delivers secure mobile financial services to consumers around the globe.
"Mobile money management is about businesses facilitating financial services," said Zimmerman. "Because it involves elements such as financial regulations, as well as customers' money, and personal details, mobile money must meet extremely high standards in terms of performance and security.
"By installing the Fundamo solution onto our industry-leading SDP, Accenture helps provide businesses with an industry-tested way to deliver reliable, secure, mobile services to their diverse customer segments. This is an important advancement for the mobile financial services industry."
Accenture is offering the mobile money management solution as a non-branded, "white label" capability, which allows businesses to retain their brand with their customers. The solution is offered under a transaction-based pricing model, which means businesses pay only for the number of customers who use the capability.
Accenture offers mobile money management as a managed service, hosted at Accenture data centers around the world. As a result, businesses do not have to invest in additional infrastructure, which reduces start-up costs.
"In the wake of the financial crisis, mobile finance has become a critical frontier for bank industry growth," said Noel Gordon, global managing director of Accenture's banking practice. "Consumers are looking for more convenience, simplicity and manageability in their financial lives. The banks that will win customer loyalty will be those with the technologies needed to deliver world-class financial services over mobile devices."