Payment solutions aren’t always thought of as strategic but in Gett’s case, getting payments right means being able to compete globally versus aggressive ride-hauling app competitors like Uber. The taxi on-demand company already operates in 57 cities worldwide, including New York, London, Moscow, and Tel Aviv. As one of the largest on-demand transportation apps, it’s essential to have the right combination of risk management and seamless user experience when it comes to customers paying for their rides in every country it does business.
As Gett grows increasingly global in its scope, it requires the same from its ability to process payments. Apps like Gett have simplified the user component of payments by making them almost invisible — once you’ve set up your account and ordered a ride, a user never really has to touch payments again. The challenge, though, on the back end for global companies is managing the complexities of foreign acquirer banks and cross border payments.
“As we continue to scale we realize that the payment process and user experience through our E-wallet is a key factor for our users. The challenge for us is to make the payment process smooth and slick to our authentic and loyal users, while blocking fraudulent activities ,” said Tal Brener, CFO Gett.
Working with only a handful of acquirers means a merchant can’t fully optimize for risk and profits. Fees and user experience can suffer. That’s where Gett’s new relationship with payment technology player, Zooz comes in. Zooz is a 5 year old startup that sits on top of the traditional payment processing relationships merchants have with Braintree or Stripe, for example. It’s also agnostic to acquirers. Working with Gett, the company’s smart-routing technology enables the transportation firm to smartly route payments to the appropriate payment processor and acquirer.
“The Zooz platform makes payments painless by reducing card declines and fees, and easily integrates additional local payment providers and methods for the benefit of our customers” Gett’s Brener explained.
For example, Gett may pick up a Chinese citizen traveling on business in London. Zooz gives the firm the ability to route this payment through a local acquirer in China, applying local risk management rules to improve decline rates and avoiding cross-border fees. “With Zooz, Gett can now route transactions based on the firm’s own KPIs, not just based on relationships they have with acquiring banks,” said Oren Levy, Zooz’s CEO.
Built extensively to service global retailers, Zooz is a technology platform and charges its clients a fee based on usage. It counts DIY website builder Wix, daily deals site, Groupon, and iconic British brand, Burberry, as clients. The firm also provides an analytics package so that its customers can grow internationally with added transparency on their payments systems. “Using Zooz, Gett now can tell where the issues are, figure out how they can solve them, where issues came from, and why cards were declined,” Levy remarked. “Before Zooz, merchants had to go to a bank directly to resolve any problems. Now, they can see more data and optimize their processes and revenues.”
With all the talk about Uber’s success, it’s easy to forget that there are other companies competing for the future of transportation. Gett is one of those companies enjoying early success. Unlike Uber which turns anyone with an app and a car into a potential driver, Gett works with existing taxis or black car services. According to Crain’s, the company was rumored to be raising upwards of $400 million on a valuation as high as $2 billion after having raised over $200 million to date. Competitor Lyft recently closed a $1 billion round at a $5.5 billion valuation.
Paypal recently touted the fact that every time a customer pays Uber, the firm sees revenue via its Braintree division. And who knows, maybe the competition for global on-demand transportation will be decided by payments?