Mobile-payments company mPayy Inc. has added reloadable prepaid debit and payroll cards as an option to fund its accounts, the company announced Oct. 12.

MPayy offers free person-to-person payments between members and merchants and low-cost merchant processing using a combination of e-commerce, mobile technology and automated clearinghouse services.

MPayy enables users to send funds through its website, mobile Web browser or smart phone application. To send funds between mPayy users, the sender needs the recipient’s phone number or account nickname.

The Chicago-based company added the prepaid option after learning consumers were trying to sign up for mPayy accounts using the cards, according to founder and CEO Conrad Sheehan. Consumers previously only could link a checking account to mPayy.

Adding prepaid cards “lines up well with the company’s general philosophy to provide a more-open payments system so anybody can use it,” Sheehan says.

The prepaid card option makes mPayy more attractive to unbanked and underbanked consumers,” he adds, noting the company studied data examining financially underserved consumers and found its offering largely ignored that segment.

 “We decided we would take a look at what it would take” to add prepaid cards, Sheehan says.

MPayy made some technology adjustments on its end and tested the service internally before launching it, he says.

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