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Online shopping was a pain before I got my first credit card. Painstakingly transferring money from my bank account to an online vendor is not ideal. With a credit card though, online shopping becomes easy.
For the unlucky few who cannot get a credit card, online shopping dreams are dashed. Not so, says Triloq Payment Services. Its products, 1-2-Pay Online and AcceptEmail have been in development from January 2011 and aim to “free” the user from online shopping payment grief, allowing users to add funds from their bank accounts into a virtual credit card, and email bill payments. This month, the service opens up to the crowd desperate to shop online.
The shareholders, World of Avatar and Triloq Investments, funded the project for “an undisclosed amount of money”. World of Avatar is headed by Alan Knott-Craig Jnr, a well-known VC king based in Stellenbosch, South Africa, who recently acquired the messaging platform MXit. Triloq is headed by Veeren Naidoo, an ex-Standard Bank employee who sold his card payment and EFT interests before becoming CEO of Triloq Payment Services (which is in turn, owned by World of Avatar).
Naidoo describes why his credit card service is so necessary. “The high levels of online card fraud as well as the barriers to online shopping for customers without credit cards prompted us to explore ways to offer customers a simple open loop online retail payment solution.”
Users are scared to shop online, owing to credit card fraud. Those without means can now “shop confidently” with the Triloq retail payment solutions. Users can also control their bill payments in real time (well, in an email environment at the very least).
Additionally, Naidoo heard the frustrated cries from users who had to manually pay their monthly bills. “This prompted us to look for a ‘green’ bill presentment and payment solution for the commercial market”. Ultimately, Your bill payments now become paperless.
Commercial and private uses
Naidoo says that the application, AcceptEmail, is well suited not only to private individuals, but to the commercial environment as well. As described by Naidoo, the targeted commercial users are companies looking for a way to “lower operational costs” as well as “getting payments affected as soon as possible, which ultimately affects liquidity.”
The team at Triloq says it understands the South African banking system. It is their aim to “succeed where others have failed on numerous occasions”. Triloq’s focus is on specific services in the payment chain. Additionally, being part of World of Avatar allows Triloq to extend its feelers into the business networks of the world.
Working out the kinks
The 1-2-Payonline product is in a beta launch phase and is available only for payments on SA websites. During this beta phase, a limited rand value for virtual cards may be created. This will change shortly when Triloq opens up the virtual cards to international websites.
Triloq competitors are no less than some of the biggest payment gateways in South Africa. EasyPay, Paygate, Paym8 and VCS are a selection of the opponents Triloq is up against. With the aim to be self-funded and profitable within five years, Triloq will have to entice the public with its lush combination of virtual credit cards and easy email bill payment options in order to succeed.