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VeriFone's Acquisition of Global Bay Technologies

On November 1st VeriFone announced its acquisition of Global Bay Technologies, a mobile retail solutions provider behind some recent mobile POS deployments including Guess and PacSun. This is in line with VeriFone’s strategy to invest heavily on inorganic growth strategies (to the tune of $1 Billion), as the company looks to expand its presence in key vertical segments & emerging country markets.

Global Bay has focused heavily on developing mobile POS applications, particularly for the iOS platform, to support a variety of applications including (but not limited to):

  • Queue busting, speedier checkout
  • Scalable POS bandwidth for peak hours
  • Targeted sales, personalized promotions
  • Enhanced labor efficiency – enabling product information lookup

What makes this acquisition interesting is that both VeriFone and Ingenico (with its iPA280) have, over the past few months, broadened their solutions offerings beyond payment and made an entry into the mobile POS market. VDC sees the market for enterprise mobile POS hardware growing at a CAGR of 11.4% over the next 5 years to around $230 million, and expects payment terminal vendors to offer stiff competition to the other suppliers in the space.

This acquisition by VeriFone is also in line with VDC’s assessment of the customer engagement technology market back in May (here), where we discussed how this universal mobile form factor is causing convergence in the supplier ecosystem for key product types, having them compete for tighter retail IT budgets.

Is VeriFone looking to extensively leverage Global Bay’s POS application platform to drive traction for its PAYware Mobile devices or its dedicated mobile payment terminals? Will consumer devices make an even bigger push into the retail in-store environment with this acquisition? These are some of the questions we expect to get an answer to in the coming months, going into 2012, as the concept of ‘mobility’ yet again redefines the competitive landscape for some of the traditional point-of-sale solutions.

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