Mobile-banking technology vendor Monitise PLC is planning to expand into Uganda, reports American Banker, a CardLine sister publication. The United Kingdom-based company said Monday its Ugandan expansion, funded by a $1.5 million (1 million euros) grant from the Africa Enterprise Challenge Fund, is designed to help underbanked consumers achieve the means to graduate eventually to more conventional banking services. The fund provides financing for private companies to encourage new business ideas in African countries. Monitise's mobile services include person-to-person payments, bill payment and e-commerce. "The UK has highly regulated and well-developed payments systems which we, as consumers, can easily take for granted," Alastair Lukies, Monitise CEO, said in a press release. "In markets with little or no payments infrastructure, particularly in the rural areas, the mobile phone is providing a bridgehead for transformational services." Monitise also operates a joint venture in the United States, Monitise Americas, with Fidelity National Information Services Inc.'s Metavante Technologies Inc. unit.

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