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Ganesh Ventures

Digital payment platform ToneTag raises $10 Mn from Amazon, Mastercard

Ganesh Ventures

ToneTag, which offers a new kind of digital payment solution—based on sound wave technology, has raised between $8-10 million from a group of investors led by Amazon Inc. and Mastercard.

The company is, however, yet to confirm the development of raising funds from new group of investors.

Until now, the platform had raised more than $2.3 Mn funding across three rounds. Its existing investors include Mohandas Pai, PremjiInvest’s chief investment officer T.K. Kurien and Facebook executive Anand Chandrasekaran.

Leveraging sound wave technology, ToneTag enables payments and customer engagement services on any device, independent of the instrument or infrastructure.

Also read: With 50 Mn reach, ToneTag eyes to disrupt digital payment through sound-based technology

Unlike other digital modes of payments which essentially need data connectivity, ToneTag requires a proprietary software development kit (SDK) on the merchants’ device, such as EDC terminal or POS or phones and customers’ mobile banking or payment apps.

After the new investment, the platform, which already has an existing partnership with Mastercard, will integrate its technology with Amazon’s payment app Amazon Pay.

The platform works with partners, merchants, and consumers. Currently, there are 18 partners, including ICICI Bank, Yes Bank, Freecharge, Airtel, and Mastercard, among others which have integrated with ToneTag.

Besides, it has a customer base of 300,000 merchants. It claims to have reached 50 million end consumers and the number is expected to cross 100 million within the next six months.

The company is also planning to explore African markets soon and also building a strong partnership pipeline in West Asia, Asia Pacific, and Latin America.

Meanwhile, Amazon has also increased the focus on its payment platform.  In March this year, Amazon infused Rs 195 crore into its payments arm Amazon Pay.

This was the second round of funding into Amazon Pay by the parent company within past six months. In September last year, Amazon had pumped in Rs 260 crore into its wallet unit.

Early this year, Amazon claimed that more than 60 per cent of its transaction was driven by digital payment modes including net banking and Amazon Pay balance in 2017. This was almost 10-15 percent jump from 2016 as its digital transactions were below 50 per cent in that year.

Buoyed by spate in digital transaction volume, the Jeff Bezos-led company eyes to fuel usages of digital payment options among its customers through offering services based on their transaction data.

The development was first reported by Mint.

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