Thursday, December 06, 2012

PayLab Networks Wants To Marry Vendine Machines With Smartphones

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Smartphones are on the rise, and the upward movement is yet to see a decline, which, as industry experts believe, is not going to happen anytime soon. Smartphones today had gotten smarter, are cross-generational, and voice calling is just one of their many features. If you take time to observe people at coffee shops, airports, even in planes, not a lot of them use the smartphone for voice calls. Most of them actually read, swipe and tap. With a smartphone, Internet access is right at the user's fingertips. Music, high quality cameras, downloadable entertainment apps, what else is there?

On the business side of the equation, with these mobile devices, businesses can now engage with customers, advertise their services, pay bills, accept payments, etc.

Speaking of paying bills and accepting payments, there is this new smartphone app and point-of-sale device called PayLab that allows vending machine operators to effortlessly receive payments from over 100 million North American clients. PayLab enables customers carrying smartphones to easily pay for their purchases while eliminating exuberant fees slapped by cashless systems.

According to Mike Gron, PayLab's founder, the accelerating credit card fees borne by both consumers and merchants has opened up windows of opportunities for various types of payment solutions, and he saw vending as a perfect avenue to explore what can be done with a little ingenuity and market know-how. Mike Gron adds that the hardware engineering and testing had been both challenging and interesting.

One big contributor to Mike Gron's success was his willingness to get to know his audience. He spent a great deal of time in warehouses and trucks trying to understand the ins and outs of the industry. When asked which was more difficult, raising capital or finding the right talent, he explained that getting one without the other is going to be a challenge. Staying affiliated with the local tech community and keeping people informed of developments (or the lack thereof) is important.

Just recently, PayLab was presented at the Plug and Play Launch and Startup Showdown, an event with investors from Silicon Valley and Calgary, as well as at the Start Up Calgary Launch Party that took place on November 14. Currently, PayLab is trying to raise an initial round of financing for production ramp-up.

[Via - Uncommon Business Ideas]

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