Samsung has acquired mobile payments startup LoopPay, indicating that it may soon launch a competitor to Apple's mobile wallet, Apple Pay.
Apple Pay launched last year and is shaping up as an increasingly convenient solution for mobile payments, rapidly widening its reach and signing deals with major companies. Samsung is apparently gunning for Apple Pay with a mobile payment solution of its own, if the new acquisition of LoopPay is any indication.
Unlike Apple Pay and Google Wallet, which rely on NFC to allow for mobile payments, LoopPay allows users to hold a smartphone case up to a card reader and mimic swiping a traditional credit card. In turn, this means that it can work with the vast majority of existing payment terminals.
"Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. today announced that it has agreed to acquire LoopPay, the acclaimed mobile wallet solutions provider that turns existing magnetic stripe readers into secure, contactless receivers. LoopPay's technology has the potential to work in approximately 90% of existing point-of-sale (POS) terminals, according to internal research, with no investment in new infrastructure required by merchants. LoopPay will join Samsung to strengthen the company's overall efforts to provide users with seamless, safe, and reliable mobile wallet solutions," explains a press release on Wednesday, Feb. 18.
"This acquisition accelerates our vision to drive and lead innovation in the world of mobile commerce. Our goal has always been to build the smartest, most secure, user-friendly mobile wallet experience, and we are delighted to welcome LoopPay to take us closer to this goal," touted JK Shin, President and Head of IT and Mobile Division at Samsung Electronics.
"We are excited to take our relationship with LoopPay to the next level, by bringing consumers a mobile wallet solution that is not just safe and reliable, but also widely accepted at more locations than any competing service," further added David Eun, EVP of Samsung's Global Innovation Center. "Through this deal we can significantly accelerate our mobile commerce efforts. LoopPay's outstanding leaders and team have deep-rooted relationships with banks, card networks and merchants that will complement those Samsung has established over the years."
The specific terms of the deal remain undisclosed for now, but this new acquisition stems from an existing collaboration between Samsung and LoopPay. Samsung has not offered any additional details at this point, but the timing of this deal suggests that it may introduce a new mobile payments service at its Galaxy S6 unveiling on March 1.