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 April 13, 2011
American Express and Payfone Announce Strategic Alliance to Power Global Mobile Checkout

 American Express and Payfone, a leading mobile payment processing service, have announced a strategic alliance to create and power a new global mobile checkout service. As part of the agreement, Payfone will combine its advanced mobile authorization and payment services with American Express' recently launched digital payments platform, Serve.

Working together, Serve and Payfone will provide consumers with the ability to make purchases from online merchants using their mobile phone number at checkout. Consumers will be able to link their mobile numbers to a variety of payment methods including their pre-or-postpaid mobile operator account, as well as via a customer's Serve account.

"This alliance brings together Serve's unified online, mobile and real-world functionality with Payfone's advanced mobile authorization and payment services to deliver a seamless payment solution," said Dan Schulman, Group President, Enterprise Growth, American Express. "The alliance is an important next step for the international roll out of Serve. We look forward to working with Payfone as we evolve the Serve platform to provide the most advanced payment solutions for buyers and sellers, while setting new standards in security, simplicity and reliability."

Payfone is unique in leveraging the existing assets of mobile operators, such as the global SS7 signaling network for directly connected payment authorization and processing. This approach distinguishes Payfone from other competitors.

Payfone's unique IP focuses on driving merchant's sales conversion and revenue yield while managing fraud using new factors of authentication that are inherent in the mobile operator networks. For consumers, it means greater choice in payment methods and the most frictionless user experience, across any device.

"This relationship will be a defining force in the industry. By teaming up with American Express' new digital payments platform, Serve, we are not only delivering greater choice to consumers and merchants, with one of the most comprehensive and advanced e-wallets in the industry, we are also enabling mobile operators to participate in the transaction flow and benefit from an entirely new revenue source," said Rodger Desai, Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Payfone. "Over 5 billion people worldwide currently have mobile phones, however less than 2 billion have credit cards. It's our goal to make the mobile phone number the new accepted way to pay. We look forward to working with American Express and our mobile operator partners in defining and driving the mobile payments industry.