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CES serves as the backdrop for big announcement from Syniverse and Samsung

Margie Manning

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Dean Douglas, Syniverse president and CEO, and Scott Koo, president, Samsung SDS America

Syniverse – a Tampa company that provides services for mobile network operators and businesses – and telecommunications technology giant Samsung SDS say they want to simplify mobile payments for anyone with a phone.

The two companies have signed a memorandum of understanding to develop a wallet-agnostic, mobile payment platform. The new platform will enable regulatory-compliant and cross-region mobile transactions for mobile operators and businesses in logistics, financial, travel and hospitality, media and entertainment, and retail markets.

They chose one of the biggest stages possible for their announcement – the 2020 International CES in Las Vegas, the largest tech trade show in the world, drawing about 175,000 attendees.

The project will bring together blockchain offerings from both Samsung and Syniverse. They will focus on developing a common platform that will work with any mobile operator and allow any mobile user to send money, loyalty points or other digital currencies to other mobile users or merchants on a global basis, a news release said.

The goal is to establish universal financial transaction trust for every connected device in the world, said Dean Douglas, Syniverse president and CEO. Blockchain technology helps accomplish that.

“Today’s digital transformation requires mobile operators and businesses to offer their customers and employees seamless mobile experiences, especially in the area of clearing and settlement. In collaboration with Samsung SDS, we intend to integrate the power of blockchain to design a mobile wallet platform that solves some key challenges of mobile payments and builds trust in a mobile user’s identity, device and transaction,” Douglas said.

The Syniverse platform connects more than 7 billion mobile devices in 158 countries and annually processes more than $35 billion in transactions for mobile operators and enterprises. Syniverse’s extensive experience was cited by Scott Koo, President, Samsung SDS America.

The need for simple, fast, secure, auditable and cost-effective monetary transactions is growing worldwide. Today the cost to consumers and merchants is too high,” Koo said. “The proven attributes of blockchain along with the scalability and flexibility of Nexledger Universal [Samsung’s distributed ledger platform for business] and Syniverse’s decades of payment and settlement experience, create the opportunity to lead the market in delivering a frictionless phone-to-phone or phone-to-merchant payment engine for secure, simple exchange of value.”

Together, the two companies “are primed to securely convert your mobile phone into an easy-to-use digital wallet,” Koo said.

The companies did not disclose financial terms of their partnership, or a time frame for the project.

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