The contactless and NFC infrastructure specialist has been granted a broad patent covering the over-the-air provisioning of payments cards, loyalty cards and other non-payments cards to NFC phones — and has also secured an extra US$8.6m in funding.
Vivotech has been awarded a key NFC-related software patent covering a broad range of methods, systems and products for the over-the-air (OTA) provisioning of credit, debit, prepaid, loyalty and other payment or non-payment cards into mobile phone devices through wireless networks or the internet.
US patent number 7,469,151 covers Vivotech’s “unique methods and system for the provisioning of credit, debit, prepaid, loyalty and other payment or non-payment cards” into NFC mobiles, says the company, including:
- Provisioning of a card could either be initiated by card issuer through a ‘push’ message or initiated by consumer through the mobile phone
- Consumer self-authentication to enable secure payment card download into an NFC mobile instantly, anytime, anywhere through mobile networks
- A two-server architecture that allows an issuer to utilise a dedicated server in its own premises or operated by a third party on its behalf, and for this server to work with control/configuration server software run by a mobile network operator (MNO) or by a trusted server manager (TSM) on behalf of an MNO
- Ability for an issuer to provision their branded image, customer support information and other relevant information from their plastic cards to the card holder’s mobile devices, providing a unique card issuer brand and look and feel on the mobile screen.
- Ability to allow the first time provisioning of a single payment or loyalty card one at a time as well as allowing existing users to provision multiple cards when switching mobile phones.
“This patent is an important milestone for the company and its partners and customers. It demonstrates Vivotech’s focus on driving innovation to deliver the next generation of consumer payments” says Vivotech’s CEO Michael Mullagh. “Vivotech has a strong portfolio of multiple patents — and additional patents covering several different aspects of mobile payments, promotions and marketing are pending.”
The company has also announced it has closed an US$8.6m extension to its Series C round of funding from its existing investors. These include Alloy Ventures, Citi, Draper Fischer Jurvetson, DFJ Gotham, First Data, Miven Ventures, Motorola Ventures, NCR, and Nokia Growth Partners.
Vivotech has now shipped over 470,000 contactless terminals to more than 35 countries worldwide and recently won the Frost & Sullivan ‘North American Smart Cards Product Line Strategy of the Year’ award.