Apple bought a payment application that attracted Sberbank and its former CIO

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08/03/2020, Mon, 09:32, Moscow time

, Text: Elyas Kasmi



Apple acquired the Canadian fintech company Mobeewave, in which Sberbank invested $ 6.5 million in 2014, and Samsung – $ 3.5 million in 2019. Apple does not disclose its goals, but Mobeewave technology, according to Bloomberg, could help it in development of its payment system Apple Pay.

Another startup in the Apple collection

Apple joins its acquisitions of startups with Mobeewave, based in Montreal, Canada. According to Bloomberg, citing unnamed sources, the deal cost the tech giant $ 100 million. At the time of publication of the material, Apple itself did not confirm or deny the purchase of Mobeewave.

Mobeewave has been around since 2011 and its main product is a mobile payment application of the same name. Over nine years, the company has conducted four rounds of investments – the first, according to the CrunchBase resource, took place at the end of December 2014. The lead investor in that round of financing was Fort Ross Ventures (until 2015 – SBT Venture Capital) with Sberbank investments. $ 6.5 million was invested in a Canadian startup.

According to the telegram channel The Edinorog, Fort Ross Ventures left Mobeewave before the deal with Apple. The reasons for this, the buyer, the date of the transaction at the time of publication of the material were not known.

Why Apple needed Mobeewave

Apple has not disclosed the motives behind the acquisition of Mobeewave. “Apple buys small startups from time to time. Usually, we do not disclose the purpose of such acquisitions and our future plans, ”a spokesman for the tech giant told Bloomberg.

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Canadians’ work can be useful for Apple to develop its payment system

According to the publication, the company could be interested in another product of Canadian developers – a proprietary technology that turns any smartphone with an NFC module into an analog of a portable payment terminal.

It is possible that this Mobeewave work in the foreseeable future will become part of iPhone smartphones, in which NFC appeared in 2014, simultaneously with the launch of the Apple Pay payment system, which got to Russia in October 2016. In this case, according to Bloomberg experts, it will be able to compete on an equal footing with Square, which produces payment terminals and develops mobile applications for paying for goods and services.

Bloomberg writes that Apple is going to completely retain the entire Mobeewave state and does not plan to relocate them from Canada to the United States yet. The exact number of startup employees is unknown – according to the agency, there are several dozen, and CrunchBase mentions only two of its co-founders – and Benjamin du Hayes (Benjamin du Hays) и Maxima de Nanclas (Maxime de Nanclas).

Other investments in Mobeewave

Over the nine years of its existence, Mobeewave has attracted a total of $ 26.5 million in investments. Sberbank participated only in the first round at the end of 2014.

The second round took place in March 2018, with the participation of Venbridge, but the volume of its investments, ChunchBase writes, is unknown. In November 2018, the third round brought the startup C $ 22 million ($ 16.39 million at the exchange rate as of August 3, 2020) from three investors – Forestay Capital, MasterCard and NewAlpha Asset Management.

The last round at the time of publication of the material took place in January 2019 – Mobeewave raised another $ 3.5 million.The South Korean company Samsung acted as an investor, which allowed it to integrate startup technologies into its own smartphones and its own payment system Samsung Pay. It has existed since August 2015. ., but in Russia works since September 2016

About Fort Ross Ventures

Fort Ross Ventures is an international investment company registered in the Cayman Islands. It was founded in 2015 by the former CIO of Sberbank Viktor Orlovsky and Yakov Nakhmanovich based on SBT Venture Capital, established in 2012. Currently, it manages the venture capital funds SBT Venture Fund I and SBT Venture Fund II.

SBT Venture Fund I with a volume of $ 100 million was founded in 2013. With the support of Sberbank, it invested in the IT company Gridgain Systems, the eToro social trading network, taxi aggregator Uber other.

SBT Venture Fund II, launched in 2017, focuses on the areas of fintech, artificial intelligence, cloud computing and the Internet of Things. Its volume is $ 200 million. One of the first investments of the fund was the Israeli startup Thetaray, which helps to identify cases of money laundering using artificial intelligence technologies.

Late 2018 CNews reported on the fund’s investment in artificial intelligence-based personalization technology developed by Dynamic Yield. June 2019 SBT Venture Fund II invested in the American service for advertising on a taxi Firefly

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