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Contactless Payment Technology in Croatia Still Underdeveloped

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SMS payments could boost revenues from tourism.

Zagreb-based Trilix, a daughter company of Croatia’s software exporter Span, is continuously looking for opportunities in the financial technology (fintech) industry. It has recently made a deal with Semper Tehnika to collaborate on SMS payments for car washing. However, the plans of the company whose co-founder and director is Mladen Amidžić, former IT director of Pliva and GBS IT, are much bigger, reports Poslovni.hr on March 23, 2016.

Trilix wants to create new opportunities to increase revenues in Croatian tourism through SMS payments. Mobile providers, Amidžić said, would get another opportunity for additional revenue from tourists. While this Croatian fintech company is working hard to get started in exports and to create new partnerships necessary for business success, at home it has been facing with illogical and complicated regulations with levies and fees that in practice help the credit and debit card sector at the expense of the development of domestic high-tech industry.

Amidžić added that paying for services with mobile phones had not yet reached the expected levels. The objective reason is the receiver network for contactless technologies, which is still not wide enough. Only slightly above 30 percent of all EFT POS terminals in Croatia have been enabled for contactless payments. Another major obstacle is that mobile operators are still looking for an appropriate business model.

He explained that his company cannot export its solutions to countries such as France or Germany because mobile operators do not share their SMS roaming signals. The only solution is to arrange for this service with local mobile operators. And this is a direction they are exploring. “The SMS-coin acceptors in the region will be the first test. Through this option, we will make a deal with the local operators and when Croats go, for example, on a business trip in Belgrade, they will be able to pay for car washing with SMS and vice versa. This will be a good opportunity for operators in Croatia and for those in the neighbouring countries because it will increase the usage and their revenues”, said Amidžić.

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