Intesa Sanpaolo invests in vending machine-based cash acceptance network MatiPay

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Italian banking group Intesa Sanpaolo has made a €7 million ($7.8 million) investment in MatiPay, an Italian cash acceptance network that leverages wireless vending machines.

MatiPay has developed a new payment system for purchasing goods and services online, as well as conducting digital money transfers with cash by using vending machines to accept bank notes and coins. The inflow of capital from Intesa will be used to speed up MatiPay’s expansion efforts in Europe, Japan and the U.S., where the use of vending machines is widespread. MatiPay reports that there are more than 16 million vending machines in use in these target markets.

MatiPay is a division of Sitael S.p.A. based in Mola di Bari, Italy. The transaction was carried out by Neva Finventures, Intesa Sanpaolo’s corporate venture capital arm.

“We believe that innovation is an essential element for guaranteeing a competitive economy," Carlo Messina, CEO and managing director of Intesa Sanpaolo, said in a press release. "MatiPay is an example of this; it is a partner with enormous potential in the fintech area which will help accelerate the Group's leadership in digital payment systems.”

Once funds have been loaded into the MatiPay wallet via cash, PayPal or credit card, they can be spent or used for a person-to-person (P2P) money transfer. The MatiPay wallet is integrated with the PayPal wallet which allows its funds to be spent at online merchants that accept PayPal.

In March, the Coven Consortium, one of Italy’s leading vending machine operators, signed an agreement with MatiPay’s parent, Sitael, to install 10,000 MatiPay NFC modules across its vending machines with an option for an additional 10,000 units if certain conditions are met.

The new agreement is a follow-up to a 2018 pilot where MatiPay installed 1,000 MatiPay NFC modules (readers) in Coven vending machines. The pilot agreement was signed in 2017 and included an integration with the Coven mobile wallet.

The Coven Consortium comprises 14 companies across Italy that have 65,000 vending machines and 30,000 office coffee systems yielding over €230 million ($255 million) in annual revenue from over one million end users.

In 2017 Intesa Sanpaolo began to support an Italian P2P payment app called Jiffy to be used at the point of sale locations at more than 150 retail stores in Milan, Rome and Turin.

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Mobile payments Digital payments Italy