My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica: Mozido Jamaica Limited and Mobile Payments - Plants and Zombies say the Gods must be Crazy

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Mozido Jamaica Limited and Mobile Payments - Plants and Zombies say the Gods must be Crazy


A man like that is hard to find but I can't get him off my mind
Ain't it sad
And if he happens to be free I bet he wouldn't fancy me
That's too bad
So I must leave, I'll have to go
To Las Vegas or Monaco
And win a fortune in a game, my life will never be the same

Lyrics to the song Money, Money, Money by the group ABBA

Telecom Provider LIME is launching the Apple iPhone 4 on Tuesday June 14th 2011 as chronicled in my blog article entitled “LIME and the Apple iPhone 4 - The Young and the Restless Gone in Sixty Seconds”.

Kingstonians , more specifically the The Young and the Restless (TV Series 1973– ) crowd, may not be Gone in Sixty Seconds (2000) after all, if the next bit of analysis on my part is spot on.

This as an Austin, Texas-based company, Mozido Jamaica Limited, has decided that the US$2 billion estimated remittance market is too big to ignore as stated in the article “Mobile Money Provider Sets Up Shop In New Kingston”, published Wednesday June 8, 2011 by Avia Ustanny, Gleaner Reporter, The Jamaica Gleaner.

And they may be doing it using NFC (Near Field Communication) powered Google Wallet!!

Some interesting stats: The Director of the company’s parent, Mozido LLC, appears to be American business Executive Gregory Corona of Dallas (imagine a Texan in a 10-gallon hat, folks!!) and is a wholly owned subsidiary of Mozido LLC.

Mozido LLC came to life some five (5) years prior in 2006AD as Affinity Global Services. they changed their name to Mozido LLC in October of 2009 as stated in the article “Mozido, LLC INTERNET SOFTWARE AND SERVICES”, published June 12, 2011 7:34 PM, BusinessWeek.

“More foreigners”, you snort, struggling to read my blog with much incredulity, thinking of PayLess Shoesource, who came to Jamaica a la Vybz Kartel’s latest videos entitled “Vybz Kartel featuring Russian ‘Jeans and Fitted’” and his prior hit song “Vybz Kartel ft. Popcaan and Gaza Slim - Clarks.

Textbook case of the positive benefits of a Dancehall Artiste being associated with products, more popularly know as the VyBz Kartel Effect as my blog article entitled “JDX and PayLess - First Dove of a Coming Recovery” noted in the case of Blue Power and PayLess Shoesource, post-recession!

Jamaica is an emerging market and foreign business stand ready to cash in our nascent recovery from the effects of the Recession that wafted to our shores in 2009AD.

But this company Mozido Jamaica Limited, specializes in Mobile Banking, mainly via SMS (Short Messaging Service).

This is all the rage on the African Sub-Continent, specifically Kenya, which pioneered the concept in 2007AD as stated in the article “Kenya sets world first with money transfers by Mobile”, published Tuesday 20 March 2007 by Xan Rice in Nairobi, The Guardian.

Since then Mobile Banking via basic Feature phones using SMS has been growing in leap and bounds, fueling the African adoption to Mobile Phones via this utilitarian serviceKenya's Mobile Banking Revolution”, published March 11, 2009, 5:30pm PT By Janko Roettgers, GigaOM and the article “Africa's Mobile Banking revolution”, published Wednesday, 12 August 2009 23:29 by Louise Greenwood, BBC News.

So speaks Mobile Money Africa of Mozido Jamaica Limited with, quote “solutions that enable easy and secure transactions such as, person-to-person money transfers; bill payments, international money transfers, retail purchases, purchase of airtime all from the convenience of the Mobile phone, and without the need of a traditional Bank Account”.

Initially Mozido LLC’s reason for coming to Jamaica appeared to be Mobile Banking. A lucrative VAS (Value Added Service) arena in which Telecom Provider Digicel in partnership with the Bank of Nova Scotia has already staked its claim.

This is both in Haiti as noted in the article “Digicel brings Mobile Banking to Haiti”, published Wednesday, November 24, 2010, The Jamaica Observer and in Jamaica as stated in the article  Digicel, ScotiaBank Partner on Mobile Banking Product”, published Wednesday November 24, 2010 by Mark Titus, The Jamaica Gleaner.

But Telecoms Provider Digicel Platform is EDGE and WebApp driven, and is more suitable for Blackberry’s and other smartphones (note the Blackberry is not a smartphone!!) as stated in my blog article entitledSupreme Ventures and Blackberry Gambling - Rihanna S&M on the Dark Side of the Moon

Leaving me to wonder if this is the same angle that Mozido Jamaica Limited will be pursuing?

As that would put them into direct conflict with Telecoms Provider Digicel! Making Mozido Jamaica Limited’s September 2010 rental of five thousand eight hundred square feet (5,800 sq ft) of office space owned by Lasco Jamaica Ltd as confirmed by General Manager of Lasco Financial Services Jacinth Hall-Tracey appear to be an expensive miscalculation!

Thus the clues to Mozido Jamaica Limited true intentions here in Jamaica appears to reside in their descriptive take as per the Mobile Money Africa website, which hints at customer-based services “without the need of a traditional Bank Account”.

Noting that the article Mobile Money Provider Sets Up Shop In New Kingston”, published Wednesday June 8, 2011 by Avia Ustanny, Gleaner Reporter, The Jamaica Gleaner makes mention of the Remittance Market, one thus comes to a rather strange but seemingly obvious conclusion.

Mozido Jamaica Limited may be nothing more than a front for Google Wallet.

This as the use of a SMS Based Service here in Jamaica for Remittances as is the case in Kenya is impractical, as the distances to the nearest Bank are not that far or branches to few for the size of our population.

Telecom Provider Digicel foray into Mobile Banking in partnership with Bank of Nova Scotia, suggesting that a critical mass of people have Bank Accounts and are relatively affluent enough to own a smartphones. Thus they seek to enjoy the convenience of Mobile Banking on their smartphones.

SMS Banking in Kenya is on Feature phones, not smartphones, indicating a clientele who may be self-employed or receiving their money from informal activity e.g. Higglers, farmers, etc.

Add to this economic grouping low-paying PAYE (Pay As You Earn) work with salaries subverted by Remittances from abroad and the difference between Mobile Banking by Telecom Provider Digicel and Mozido Jamaica Limited becomes clear.

Again please note, the Blackberry is not a smartphone – it bears repeating!!

Thus Google Wallet is the most likely product being rolled out by Mozido Jamaica Limited, as a Google Wallet Account does not require a Bank Account, but merely a third-party lender of funds.

In this case, Mozido Jamaica Limited, using it years of experience in the remittance game to enable Remittance Accounts powered by Google Wallet and combined with their proprietary SMS based Platform to allow customers to query their Remittance Accounts.

Purchasing power is literally in the palm of your hand, as unlike Telecom Provider Digicel and Bank of Nova Scotia Mobile Banking Platform you do not need to have a Blackberry or another phone which I can safely call a smartphone, such as the soon-to-be-launched Apple iPhone 4, for which lines may be forming…..

Rather, all one needs is a NFC (Near Field Communication) Sticker, which functions in much the same way as a RFID sticker, but far more secure due to its contact-based as stated in my blog article entitledGoogle Wallet & Offers vs Square & PayPal - SME's International FlashDance”.

The user does not get the full benefits of NFC as would a phone with a NFC Reader built in, such as 4cm point-to-point 100Mbps Data transfers, but as the service is being used for the purpose of Remittances, NFC stickers programmed with your Remittance Account information will suffice  

SME and Merchants would also sign up to Google Wallet Accounts and receive a NFC (Near Field Communication) Reader, for which they would only have to have a SIM card from a Telecom Provider of choice that connects to a computer acting as a cash register, rented at a low fee of course.

This as the NFC Reader would do its transactions over the very same Telecom Provider’s Networks, only using EDGE.

Mozido Jamaica Limited service would effectively be a M2M (Machine-to-Machine) Service that is Telecom Provider Agnostic as stated in my Geezam Blog article entitled “NFC and M2M – Cashless Society and the Internet of Things”. No preference for Telecom Provider Digicel, Telecom Provider CLARO or Telecom Provider LIME, akin to SMS Platform Service  Provider CoreTalk Caribbean Limited as stated in my blog article entitledTelecom Providers and SMS - CoreTalk, Raiders of the Lost Ark”.

This making it possible for people with an ordinary Feature Mobile phone to do Banking transactions without the need to encash or even convert their remittance money to Jamaica dollars!

You can then avoid carrying around cash.

Instead:

  1. Customer carries Mobile phone with the NFC Sticker on it or whatever device has the sticker.
  2. To purchase goods or services, the customer simply swipe the phone with NFC Sticker attached over the NFC Reader and purchases the item.
  3. The SME and Merchant can then check all transactions for the day, week, month or year by going online and checking their Google Wallet Account.
  4. The customer can query their Remittance Balance on Google Wallet Account from the comfort of their home via Mozido Jamaica Limited proprietary SMS Platform or on the Internet directly from their Google Wallet Account online!

But in the case where the customer wants cash, they can request their Remittance in good ole’ Jamaican dollars via Mozido Jamaica Limited kiosks, which are sure to pop up like sunflowers, once there is sunshine, Plants vs Zombies Style.

All the above is speculation, but with a crowded Remittance and Mobile Banking Market, the mass market is really Jamaicans who receive Remittance from abroad who have no Bank Account and desire the ability to safely spend their cash powered with the convenience of Mobile Banking as those in the upper echelons of society currently enjoy on their Blackberry’s.

Google Wallet promise that and more and Mozido Jamaica Limited is here to declare that The Gods Must Be Crazy (1981) [Banks, Telecom Providers] in having ignored this burgeoning US$2 billion market for secure Remittances spending via Feature Mobile Phones.
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