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Bulgarian Fintech Startup Phos Gets Acquired to Accelerate Point of Sale Innovation Globally

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  • The Bulgaria-born fintech startup for software-only Point of Sale solutions (SoftPoS) Phos gets fully acquired by Ingenico, one of the leading global companies developing payments acceptance solutions. 
  • The acquisition is of an undisclosed amount and will allow Ingenico to extend its offer for Merchant Payment Acceptance via smartphone and make another step toward its evolution into a software-driven service.
  • The deal will involve the integration of Phos into Ingenico’s existing Payments Platform as a Service (PPaaS). 

 

“Our clients and partners around the world have clearly identified SoftPoS as one of the biggest opportunities they see right now. They consider SoftPoS a strategic option to engage with new customer segments and develop and test innovative use cases at scale, with minimum incremental investments in technology and distribution. We are very excited to bring this high-quality opportunity to our valued customers by partnering with the talented teams at Phos,” Giulio Montemagno, General Manager of PPaaS for Ingenico, highlights, 

PPaaS allows payment service providers and software vendors to design and deliver payment and value-added services across various devices, both Ingenico and non-Ingenico. The addition of Phos complements Ingenico’s device-agnostic approach, making it a natural fit for the company’s PPaaS business.

“We are delighted to join Ingenico and this transaction marks a significant step in the development of Phos. Since the company was founded, we have been a pioneer in our field, and we see a natural fit with Ingenico given their strong focus on delivering best-in-class innovative payment solutions as-a-service. We see strong customer demand and significant double-digit growth in the SoftPoS addressable market worldwide and are convinced that Ingenico will help us capture more of that market and explore new use cases with clients globally. We look forward to accelerating the business together with the Ingenico teams over the coming months,” Brad Hyett, CEO of Phos, comments

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The story in a nutshell

Founded in 2018 by Ivo Gueorguiev, Antonina Martinova, and Valeri Valtchev, Phos is the fintech startup that develops Software Point of Sale service, softwarePoS, which allows merchants to accept payments directly on their smartphones. The company provides flexible solutions to a large number of acquirers and PSPs. SoftPoS enables off-the-shelf smartphones or tablets to become payment terminals.

Prior to its acquisition, Phos raised a total of €3.3M in two rounds – one €2M corporate round led by CM.com in August 2021 and a €1.3M seed round led by the Sofia-based New Vision 3 (NV3) in March 2020. 

The startup worked with big international financial companies such as the Dutch challenger bank bunq and the London-based Stanchion Payments. In 2019, Phos won the Elevator Lab fintech program of Raiffeisen Bank International. Phos has also earned a license that allows it to operate globally and has been certified by VISA and Mastercard laboratories for its functionality and high levels of security.

The value of Point of Sale solutions

The main problem that Phos solves for merchants is that it allows them to meet the rising customer demand for contactless payment without facing the challenges of working with complex, expensive, and multiple different software and hardware payment systems. The value-added comes from the fact that the SoftPoS solution allows merchants to digitize their processes and provide their customers with alternative payment options, thus increasing sales and boosting customer loyalty. 

The Software Point of Sale does not require any additional software for payment transactions and accepts card payments directly on an NFC-enabled phone or another Android device. Buyers just have to use their card or phone at the back of the merchant’s device and then enter their PIN or choose to pay with Google or Apple Pay. Besides being less expensive and simpler than traditional merchant payment solutions, Phos also provides its users with valuable industry knowledge on regulation and compliance, including the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS).

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Elena is an Innovation Reporter at The Recursive, an online media dedicated to the emerging tech and startup ecosystems in Southeast Europe. She is keen on sharing the innovation stories that shape the regional ecosystem and has a great interest in fintech, IoT, and biotech startups. Elena is currently finishing her Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration and Political Science at the American University in Bulgaria.