Nicholas with Surfpin talks about their mobile payments program
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Interviewer: I’m here at the Game Developers Conference and with me today is a special guest. How about you introduce yourself?
Nicholas: I’m Nicholas Grubb from Surfpin. I am the Marketing Director there.
Interviewer: What’s Surfpin about?
Nicholas: Surfpin is all about accepting mobile and land line payments by telephone. It is a payment method designed to be delivered in 36 countries. It’s the fastest method by phone and so that’s land line payment as well as text payments.
Interviewer: So, basically, a game studio or an independent game developer can put your system in the game and accept payment via mobile phones then.
Nicholas: Sure. We can integrate directly into the end game, or we can use online web links. Basically, you come through to our payment system. You text a short code, get a pin back, enter the pin, and you’re complete. There’s no registration. It’s completely anonymous, and it’s quite frictionless.
Interviewer: There are a lot of companies that are now getting into this space. How is your company different than the other mobile payment companies?
Nicholas: Probably slightly different in that it’s been around for a much longer time. A lot of the new mobile payment companies have just sort of sprung up in the last couple of years. Our company has never been [?] backed, and it’s also been run for seven years, so we have a long history of payments by phone and payments by SMS. I think it’s that experience and that knowledge and not only customer service but years of payments by phone. I’ve looked at the demographics, and it’s interesting for whatever they may be.
Interviewer: Can you talk about some of, I guess, the success that independent game developers or small game developers have had using your service?
Nicholas: Yeah, sure.
Interviewer: In terms of raising their revenue.
Nicholas: Absolutely. One of our first clients was [?] games and out of that seven years ago came games such as Club Penguin and RingScape, games that sort of exploded out of that small base and which continue to build for them as they got bigger. And it’s that relationship, an ongoing relationship, that is really important to us.
Interviewer: Do you have any stats on whether even adding mobile payments help because they take a huge amount of the bottom line?
Nicholas: They do, yeah. The bottom line, no doubt, we do take a large portion of the revenue. As an additional payment method, it works very well. As a mainstream payment, it’s not going to replace the credit card. It’s not going to replace the PayPal account.
In different countries, different payment methods are more prevalent. So, for example, in some of the emerging markets, like a big one at the moment, Turkey, credit card proliferation isn’t so great so the people are look for methods that are not necessarily sold in those countries as more mainstream.
Inside the U. S. or the UK and some of Europe credit cards are everywhere and you enjoy using them, but for a lot of the demographics as well that don’t have access to those credit cards, it’s really a good method.
So, if you’re a game developer or you’re designing games for a teenage market or a market that you are trying to monetize but can’t quite access by the current traditional payment methods, this is a good alternative for you.
Interviewer: How do people get started with your service then? How can they sign up?
Nicholas: They can sign up online. We give you access through the API and you can just get straight coding and get it that way. We also have just a simple sort of ‘pay now’ button scenario for Pay Pal. If they don’t do much really and they just want to link through to some check out process.
Interviewer: What’s the site again?
Nicholas: It’s www.surfpin.com.
Nicholas: Yep, surfpin.com.
Interviewer: Thank you very much.