Monitise and JETCO to launch mobile payments in Hong Kong with PCCW

PCCW mobile customers in Hong Kong will soon be able to top-up their mobile account directly and securely via a new app from their smartphone following a collaboration with Monitise, the leading enabler of Mobile Money solutions, and its local partner JETCO (Joint Electronic Teller Service Limited).

Leveraging its connection to JETCO, which provides payment services to the majority of banks in Hong Kong, Monitise Asia Pacific has entered into a landmark deal with Hong Kong’s PCCW mobile to offer customers the ability to recharge any prepaid PCCW mobile from their smartphones. The tie-up sees PCCW mobile become Monitise Asia Pacific’s first customer in Hong Kong, with the debut mobile top-up service due in the coming months.

PCCW mobile is the mobile communications services business of PCCW Limited, Hong Kong’s premier telecommunications provider and a world-class player in Information and Communications Technologies.

PCCW’s managing director of wireless business, Richard Midgett, said the ability to top-up mobile accounts securely in such a simple and convenient way provides a massive benefit to PCCW customers.

“It’s immediate, efficient and responsive – a service that reflects the energetic, ‘on-the-go’ nature of the people in Hong Kong,” Midgett said. “We are thrilled to be the market leaders in adopting the world-beating Mobile Money technology on offer from Monitise and its Hong Kong payments partner JETCO.”

Other mobile network operators in Hong Kong and Macau will be able to sign up to the mobile payments and commerce app services Monitise is developing in the innovative Hong Kong market using its highly secure Globe technology platform, which is already used by millions of consumers around the world. Monitise enables financial institutions, mobile network operators, payment processors and retailers to mobilise their services to help consumers manage their money on the move.

Its Asia Pacific joint venture was formed in April 2010 with First Eastern, a Hong Kong-based investment group headed by Victor Chu that is pioneering in the field of direct investments in China. Last month, the joint venture entered a partnership with JETCO in Hong Kong, a key market in the region and a launchpad for Monitise’s wider Asia-Pacific ambitions.

“We are thrilled to announce PCCW mobile as our first customer for this more convenient way to top-up mobile account,” said Lam Wai Yee, Monitise managing director, Hong Kong. “Half of the mobile market in Hong Kong is prepaid. This equates to 6.5 million prepaid SIM cards requiring some method of topping up. As mobile devices are carried by customers everywhere they go, it is only natural that this should be the effective medium they use to make payments on the move.”

The new app will enable users to top-up their own prepaid voice and data plans and those of their friends and family. Crucially, the service works in real time, meaning users will have immediate access to the topped-up air time or data plan. Security is bank-grade and protected by a passcode so topping up is as safe and convenient as withdrawing money from a cash machine.

“Convenience and simplicity is at the heart of the innovative and collaborative approach we pursue in entering new markets with leading local partners and this deal forms a firm foundation for other payment and commerce services to come in Hong Kong,” said Monitise group chief executive, Alastair Lukies. “Coupled with our recent announcements in the region, our Asia Pacific footprint is growing rapidly, reflecting the significant value brought by our strategic partner Victor Chu and First Eastern.”

JETCO chairperson, Dickson So, said the collaboration with Monitise and PCCW mobile signed on as the first customer would soon see an innovative and secure mobile commerce service for the benefit of the people of Hong Kong.

“Monitise’s proven global leadership in secure Mobile Money solutions, combined with JETCO’s 30 years of experience as a trusted operator in the financial heart of Hong Kong makes ours an exceptional partnership, a fact that has now been recognised by one of Hong Kong’s leading mobile operators, PCCW mobile,” noted So. “Together, we are uniquely placed to enable secure financial transactions through the mobile and we see this as the first step along a journey to make Hong Kong a world leader in mobile commerce.”