SOURCE: Utiba Americas

Utiba Americas

March 28, 2011 09:00 ET

Utiba Americas Wins Mobile Wallet Project From Central Bank of Ecuador

Utiba, a Global Leader in Mobile Financial Solutions, Wins RFP Process to Deploy a Mobile Wallet System for the Central Bank of Ecuador

MIAMI, FL--(Marketwire - March 28, 2011) - Utiba Pte., a pioneer and global leader in mobile financial transaction software, announced today that its affiliate for the Americas, Utiba Americas, has won the RFP process for the mobile wallet project of the Central Bank of Ecuador.

The Central Bank of Ecuador thoroughly researched successful mobile money projects and deployments worldwide, and based upon their investigation, drew up strict technical pre-qualifications for its mobile money program.

Ecuador, like many Latin American countries, has seen the penetration of mobile phone services explode in the past decade, reaching a staggering 103% of the population in 2011. The majority of inhabitants, however, still do not have access to a bank account. Noting the success of global mobile money projects in reaching and helping so called "bottom of the pyramid," low income segments of society, the Central Bank launched an investigation into successful deployments to identify and incorporate global best practices into their project.

The Ecuadorian mobile financial services project will provide all inhabitants with a mobile wallet for storing, sending and receiving money. The system will operate throughout the entire country, using cellular service from any one of the three mobile network operators present in Ecuador, and can integrate all financial institutions as they are already connected to the Central Bank of Ecuador.

"The mobile money project is a key initiative for the Government of Ecuador to accelerate financial inclusion and we are pleased to have Utiba Americas as our technology partner to enable this project," mentioned Santiago Vasquez, Central Bank of Ecuador's Mobile Financial Services Program Director.

The project will evolve to integrate with the new national ID system to enable the new contactless and intelligent national ID card as a method of payment funded from the mobile wallet. For this project, Utiba Americas will provide the Utiba Mobility mobile financial services platform on a hosted basis, which will allow the Central Bank to focus on the design, deployment, and testing of services, as well as the commercial coordination for the successful launch of each of them. "Once we understood the full vision of the Central Bank of Ecuador and their plan to use mobile money as a catalyst for financial inclusion of all segments of Ecuadorian society, we were eager to take part and to lend our global deployment experience and the unique capabilities of the Utiba Mobility platform," said Jesus Luzardo, Utiba Americas' Vice President of Sales. The Utiba Mobility platform manages over 12 billion mobile financial transactions per year, in deployments that span over 30 countries.

About Utiba Pte. and Utiba Americas

Since its incorporation in 2001, Utiba has focused exclusively on the development of the most scalable, flexible and modular, mobile financial transaction platform in the market, Utiba Mobility. The Utiba Platform enables mobile phone based transactions including electronic airtime distribution, retail mobile banking, domestic & international remittance, government benefit distribution, and utility payments, among others. Utiba's clients include Mobile Network Operators (MNOs), Banks, and Payment Service Providers (PSPs) which have created highly successful solutions tailored to the microfinance and rural banking industries. The Utiba platform has been successfully deployed for over 40 customers in more than 30 countries. The platform currently supports more than 400 million subscribers, approximately 12 billion transactions per year, which represents 30% of the global, mobile commerce data traffic. For more information, visit www.utiba.com.

Utiba Americas is Utiba's affiliate for the Americas region, which offers both Utiba platform licenses, and the Utiba end to end mobile financial service solution as a hosted service. Utiba Americas is a joint venture with Miami based Alternet Systems, Inc. (ALYI), which invests in companies operating in the explosive mobile value added services markets.

About the Central Bank of Ecuador

The Central Bank of Ecuador administers the National Payment System of the country. The model implemented by the CBE involves the participation of the three mobile operators and more of 140 financial institutions interconnected to the Central Bank of Ecuador. Recently, the CBE issued the first regulation of e-money in Latin America, which is the cornerstone to develop the ecosystem to provide mobile money services to the unbanked in Ecuador.

www.bce.fin.ec

For more information on the RFP process (in Spanish)
http://bit.ly/fJ1lry

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