Intuit Inc. has confirmed reports that it acquired Boston-based mobile-commerce provider AisleBuyer LLC on April 9.
Sharna Brockett, a spokesperson for Mountain View, Calif.-based Intuit, provided ISO&Agent Weekly with an email confirmation that the acquisition took place. Brockett did not indicate whether a reported acquisition figure of $80 million to $100 million was accurate.
“We are in a fast-moving, ever-changing mobile-payments space,” Brockett stated. “By leveraging AisleBuyer’s technology and talent, together we will bring added value to Intuit’s mobile payment and point-of-sale offerings.”
In particular, AisleBuyer’s technology will help Intuit and third-party developers to create innovative mobile point-of-sale offerings for small-business customers, Brockett said.
AisleBuyer CEO Andrew Paradise did not respond to ISO&Agent Weekly requests for comment.
The technology buyout translates to Intuit adding AisleBuyer’s mobile-shopping applications to its own GoPayment mobile-payment software tied to the Intuit payment card-reader attachment for smartphones, and its QuickBooks accounting software.
AisleBuyer offers free application downloads for Apple Inc. iPhones, handsets that use Google Inc.’s Android operating system and Research in Motion Ltd. Blackberry devices.
Applications called mShop and mDine provide consumers with smartphone software that supports virtual shopping and checkout at stores and advance ordering and payments at restaurants respectively.
In addition, the mClerk application allows retailers to use smartphones to assist consumers with product and pricing information or as mobile cash registers to accept payments. AisleBuyer consumers have the option to pay via their mobile phone with no waiting in checkout lines or with their phones using contactless-payment terminals.
Many analysts have considered two-year-old AisleBuyer a legitimate mobile-payments player, mainly because it offers practical software applications that simplify the dining, retail and grocery-shopping transactions.
Acquiring AisleBuyer makes sense for Intuit because it strengthens the mobile-payment provider’s software offerings and core competencies, Richard Oglesby, senior analyst with Boston-based Aite Group, tells ISO&Agent Weekly.
“Moving forward, the industry will become a more mobile-oriented payment area, and this purchase puts Intuit in a really good position,” Oglesby says.
AisleBuyer’s virtual shopping offerings don’t necessarily represent new ideas because PayPal Inc. has been developing similar mobile shopping, Oglesby suggests.
Yet Intuit understands the potential of AisleBuyer products and knows that consumers will use mobile-payment software that adds the most value to a shopping experience, Oglesby suggests. And the acquisition would show Intuit is serious about moving to the forefront of mobile payments, he adds.
Late last year, AisleBuyer announced a New England supermarket chain would offer the company’s “virtual checkout” mShop software to customers seeking the option to pay for groceries in the aisle.
In April of last year, AisleBuyer announced a smartphone application for consumers that enables the phone camera to scan a payment card to pay for in-store and online purchases.
Intuit’s acquisition of AisleBuyer would complement the company’s acquisition of Mobile Money Ventures’ mobile-banking assets last June by giving the company strong consumer shopping and mobile-banking options. Mobile Money Ventures represented a joint venture of Citigroup Inc. and SK Telecom Co. Ltd.