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ToneTag set to disrupt mobile payments space; secures $1 million from Reliance Venture In a span of just two years since its inception, ToneTag has created ripples in the industry and has given a new significance to the mobile payments technology.

By Samiksha Jain

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L-R: Vivek Kumar Singh, Co-founder,Tone Tag; Kumar Abhishek, Co-founder &CEO, Tone Tag

We say we are in a digital era, but when it comes to paying bills or shopping through debit or credit cards, we all follow the same old time consuming process. Once done with the shopping, the merchant swipes our card and generates final bill. It sounds like a straight forward method, but it's too lengthy and time consuming. Now let me introduce you to few mobile payments start-ups like ToneTag, iKaaz and LivQuick, which will make your job easier. These start-ups are not only getting popular among the masses, but are also receiving huge backing from investors.

Fund Raising

Recently, global offline proximity based mobile payments technology start-up ToneTag has raised $1 million from Reliance Capital's Venture fund arm. The financial advisor for the deal was Mumbai-based Investment Banking firm Multistrato Capital Advisors. The company plans to use most of the funding for hiring technical, sales and marketing resources.

Commenting on the investment, an official spokesperson from Reliance Venture Asset Management, said, "We are delighted to provide the consumer a frictionless offline mobile payments solution, which offers both convenience and security. The consumer now has the ability to make payments directly from their mobiles phones using their existing m-wallets, card on file, card present (HCE) and direct bank transfer options. We believe this product enriches the transaction experience of the consumer and will assist in changing the proximity payment landscape".

The Beginning

Bengaluru-based start-up was founded by ex-Infosys employee Kumar Abhishek and Co-founder Vivek Kumar Singh along with a clutch of angel Investors like Ram Sellaratnam and Rajesh Yohannan in 2013.

ToneTag enables contactless payment solution in existing payment ecosystem by integrating its proprietary software development kit (SDK) at both merchant (mobile, POS, EDC) and customer interaction points (M-Wallet, M-Banking Apps). "Reliance understands disruption and value technology innovation. ToneTag will benefit immensely from their forward looking culture and global service network," said Kumar Abhishek, Co-founder & CEO, ToneTag.

Product USP

Unlike Near Field Communication (NFC) or Quick Response (QR) Codes, which are hardware dependent; ToneTag works on all mobile devices including feature phones and does not require any capital investment in existing infrastructure.

"ToneTag has placed itself as an enabler to make mobile transactions a reality for all. Our technology is providing tools to all stakeholders – like issuers, acquirers, merchants and consumers to realise frictionless in-store and in-app mobile payments. It is going to redefine payments in future," said Abhishek.

Industry Recognition

In a span of just two years since its inception, ToneTag has created ripples in the industry and has given a new significance to the mobile payments technology. It was declared as a winner of Great Tech Rocketships initiative as India's fast growing Technology Company. It's also been selected as a product start-up in 2015 inTech50 Awards.

Apart from these, ToneTag has been reviewed as an alternative contactless payment by multiple card networks and was a finalist in Citi Mobile Challenge held in New York. "We are not only building a world class product, but we are also investing in building a world class team, which reflects innovation both on technology and business front," said Himaghna Dey Sarkar, VP and Head – Business Development, ToneTag.

Samiksha Jain

Former Staff,

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