Irish electronics payments firm Alphyra has struck a major software licensing agreement with third-generation payments infrastructure provider VivoTech. The agreement gives Alphyra access to a prepaid payments infrastructure for loyalty cards for physical high street retailers.
“The VivoTech gift and loyalty platform gives Alphyra an immediate competitive edge in cross-selling these services to the 100,000-plus retailers with whom we have relationships across Europe and it has already helped us to win new customers in the retail sector,” John Nagle, CEO of Alphyra said.
The agreement gives Alphyra access to VivoPlatform, a software platform that supports a new range of integrated gift, prepaid, promotions and loyalty products for retailers including department stores, convenience stores, gift shops, restaurants, hotels, leisure outlets, bookshops and music stores.
The US market is the largest gift and prepaid card market in the world and VivoPlatform has a number of unique functional and technical features that will enable European retailers to launch new and exciting products to their consumers.
According to Payment System Europe (PSE) Consulting, Europeans are expected to spend some €75 billion using prepaid cards by 2010, of which €20bn will be spent using retailer-issued gift cards.
This strategic alliance with VivoTech positions Alphyra to capitalise on the growth in the prepaid and gift card market.
In addition, Alphyra will be able to exploit the next generation of payment systems developed by Vivotech. These systems allow consumers to make contactless payments with radio frequency-enabled credit cards, smart cards, debit cards, key fobs and mobile phones.
These new technologies will also enable retailers and card issuers such as banks to offer location-based and personalised loyalty, coupon and promotion programmes.
By John Kennedy