After successfully launching the payment provider Icepay in Belgium, Nicolas Mertens was on a holiday trip in December 2012 with friends in Southeast Asia. One obvious problem in trying to bank from abroad was the cumbersome and much-hated card reader. In Europe, transaction validation is an annoying process—lots of number-punching on a cheap, non-ergonomic plastic contraption. Plus, you never have a card reader when you need one. Nicolas took the challenge to do something about it.
When he returned to Belgium, Nicolas worked for various players in the startup space and noticed that the state of mobile payments was far from optimal; conversion was bad and the consumer experience was even worse. Since only 30% of Europeans have credit cards, debit card holders needed a better payment option, too. Nicolas founded Sign2Pay in November 2013. Joining him were co-founders Nick Lloyd and Tom Schouteden, and Joost Baaij, VP Engineering.
Consumers and retailers both want security and speed. With 12,000 datapoints in a signature, the Sign2Pay app converts the signature into biometric verification—much faster than the long, tedious process of inputting numbers on a card reader. And since phones are always in easy reach—a secure, online transaction with debit cards is completed in seconds. Sign2Pay already works with 3700 European banks with the number of online retailers growing daily.Get to know the whole gang
Using any touch enabled mobile device, customers can pay for online orders using their bank account number and their personal signature. The amount to be paid is directly debited from the consumer’s bank account while the merchant is protected against fraudulent transactions.
We have come up with a payment method that is the most natural, obvious fit for touch enabled devices. There should be no need for hardware card readers, nor a need to install any kind of software before making a payment. Hence came the idea for letting consumers pay on the mobile using their signature with a finger gesture.
Nicolas Mertens (CEO)