Mobile money transfer platform nTrust has expanded its merchant partner network, adding fashion retailers, antique stores, food trucks and bars.

The Vancouver-based company enables consumers to load funds into a cloud wallet. This prepaid model is different from most mobile wallets that have users link a credit or debit card to a mobile app.

The company uses its model to reduce transaction fees, charging a 1% fee per transaction, which is less than half of most mobile payment companies. Merchant accounts are free and have no monthly fees. Plus, nTrust is offering $10,000 in free processing for new merchants.

The payment flow looks similar to how consumers pay with PayPal at brick-and-mortar retailers. Consumers open the nTrust app and then select the retailer (from a list of merchants) they want to pay. They then input the amount they are paying and whether they'd like to tip, then swipe to continue.

“As consumer usage and the practicality of cash decrease, we're seeing businesses become increasingly savvy with their payment technology,” said Rod Hsu, president of nTrust, in an April 8 press release. “In recent months we've had businesses approach us directly in search of new payment options to meet consumer demand and give them an edge up by offering an increasing convenience.”

More than 20 merchants in Vancouver have signed on to use nTrust.

Consumers using the nTrust app can also send money to friends and family, load money onto a prepaid card and cash out to their bank account. The app is available for both iOS and Android users.

NTrust is also pushing “ethical payments,” taking 25% of the merchant's 1% transaction fee and giving it to the consumer's local charity of choice. 

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