G-Cash

Globe should have G–Cash over web transactions. Ka Edong already pointed this out several months ago. Having an online credit card to g–cash gateway would surely open unlimited opportunities for many Filipinos, like micropayments for content publishers and other services. Doing so would establish the telco as one of the premier innovators in the GSM arena, further strengthening the application that earned the first ever “Best Mobile Messaging Service” award given by the GSM Association.

This kind of service would provide its subscribers a viable option for online transactions, perhaps similar to Paypal when it was made available a few years back. Partner with major credit card networks and you’ve got the killer service that would stamp Globe in the worldwide map of tech innovators and visionaries.

33 Responses

  1. That’s an incredibly nice idea. Yehey tried to tap the online micropayment market but I’m not sure if it really took off. Globe should pursue this area.

  2. I think this can be accomplished by tapping into getting and charging routing numbers and account numbers securely in addition to accepting credit/debit card as well as other international secure online payment options (paypal, et al.)

  3. One important detail most services take for granted is simplicity. If a casual user cannot easily use your service, it’s as good as dead. G–Cash micropayments can be fairly easy, considering all you need is your globe–powered mobile phone. For credit card transactions, most foreign users are fairly comfortable with this type of exchange. For all local users, chances are, you have a globy handyphone or have one immediately available to you, through someone else. And sim cards are very cheap nowadays.

  4. yeah you’re right, so how does this mocropayment work using a mobile phone? does it use up your monthly allotment of minutes, or load? and yeah, i’ve been telling my friends that in the Philippines SIM cards are as easy to purchase as fastfood. I wish it’s was just like that everywhere. but hey, you guys have all the luck. :)

  5. Yehey’s PayPlus costs about Php8,800 monthly fee plus Php20 per transaction. That’s a bit expensive for micropayments and not very affordable for SMEs. With GCash, I hope it’s going to be cheaper esp with an online payment/transfer gateway.

  6. I just read about gcash today from Globe’s site, this is going to be way tight… ang galing, kasi you can pay by texting… parang sa ibang mga bansa sa europe… you can send payments to establishments by texting their number or something.

  7. well coming from an insider, they are thinking of it. actually, it’s the acceptance of the establishment/site that is more difficult in the implementation. i’ve been privy to a few meetings about g-cash being honored in a certain store/restaurant.

  8. grace: well coming from an insider, they are thinking of it.

    They should stop thinking about it and just implement the damn thing! :) Seriously, the idea presents great avenues of opportunity. If they allow simple credit card to g-cash transactions, anything can be done through this. Buying stuff online, just accept g-cash payments if you’re a merchant. This could be of great help to small business that cannot afford the hassles of complicated transaction systems.

  9. yuga: Yehey’s PayPlus costs about Php8,800 monthly fee plus Php20 per transaction. That’s a bit expensive for micropayments and not very affordable for SMEs. With GCash, I hope it’s going to be cheaper esp with an online payment/transfer gateway.

    They should simply do away with monthly fees and just stick to a minimal percentage for each transaction. The “merchant” model paying fixed fees will not help acceptance, keeping things simple like paypal would be the key. I just hope they consult peope knowledgeable in these fields, so as not to waste a good idea.

  10. With the millions of cellphone users in the Philippines, there is a large market for such micropayments, this can also apply to e-commerce solutions… which means, smaller businesses that can’t afford SSL and static IP addresses can conduct sales with more simple functions to their checkout features with the integrated micropayment system.

  11. Joachim, you’re exactly right. Any type of transaction can be accomplished through such a system, even simple cash donations less than a hundred pesos. I hope Globe does the right thing and not only think of their commercial interest.

  12. you’ve got a good discussion going here, markku. (thanks for the link)

    ang dami daming pwedeng gawin with G-Cash. I’ve spent sleepless nights just imagining how huge G-Cash can become. Honestly, I’m wondering why G-Cash has not grown as much as it could in the past …. 8 months of existence.

    G-Cash could make paypal obsolete! they can make a large dent off western union’s bottom line. G-Cash can provide “banking” services to the millions of Filipinos who cannot affford (or cannot access) formal banking services.

    haayyy…. will it be another sleepless G-Cash dreaming night for me? heheheh…..

    ka edong
    More G-Cash on Technobiography

  13. Just like Yehey’s Payplus+, some technical barriers or difficiencies. Banking networks such as BancNet or Megalink have transaction quotas and they require huge amount of advance deposits as insurance. Some time ago, yehey was inviting 3rd parties to develop APIs for them to smoothly integrate online ATM payments and until now I have been using Payplus and it’s not that very good with merchant integration. It possiblly because of layers of security enveloping the banking system, risk of fraudulent activities and potential avenue for money laundering (highly probable).

  14. ka edong, I just had a good look at a G–Cash flier and I agree with a point you raised on your blog — cash infusion into the network should be free. The only time they should be earning is when you convert G–Cash credits to real cash.

    To a certain degree, I feel its growth has not been spectacular, hardly proportional to its true potential.

    yuga, the technical barriers you raised are valid indeed. The banking industry, especially the local one, has been particularly conservative and extremely cautious of innovations like this. But as they say, those who face great risks have a lot to reap. Once a major player jumps on this, surely the pack will follow.

  15. I’m an outsider looking into G-Cash. So far, the business model I’ve seen Globe doing is that they’re earning through:

    1.) SMS messages sent for G-Cash transactions
    2.) service charges (which I believe is small compared to number 1 above).
    3.) (theoretical) revenues from partner merchant fees

    What I have not had the chance to observe is whether Globe is earning via fees (if any) Globe charges to partner merchants like National Bookstore or Burger King.

    I think Globe is at the point where they’re still building up their merchant network; at the point where they still need to convince partner merchants to join the network.

    My sense is that if and when Globe has established a good G-Cash network, other companies will start going to Globe and asking Globe: “You’re so galing, you have so many subscribers who can use G-Cash to pay my company. Can I join your merchant network?”

    And _then_ Globe can go for revenues from partner merchant fees.

    I was a Mercury Drug two weeks ago. I bought a pack of chocolates to demo G-Cash to my Vietnamese friend, Hien. And also to zero out some of my excess G-Cash. I asked the kahera whether they’ve been getting G-Cash transactions. The kahera (and bagger) estimate around 2 transactions per week (cough … measley! … cough cough).

    ka edong

  16. I think having a global currency over the internet would be the best solution, and then compare it to the american dollar on the stock exchange, so banks can convert it for u.

  17. Continuously growing pa rin naman ata ang list of merchants. I haven’t tried it but with regards to making online purchases, e2door is already a partner. With regards to making monetary donations, I believe we accepted donations via G-Cash for Red Cross/Typhoon victims before. But again, medyo mahirap lang kasi siguro iestablish ang partnership when 2 transactions/week lang ang nakukuha ng Mercury Drug. Mahirap din dumami ang gumagamit ng G-Cash kung kaunti lang ang business partners. Hmmm…the chicken or the egg?

  18. dingdong: Hmmm…the chicken or the egg?

    Exactly. Right now G–Cash is at a stage where acceptability is strongly affected by the reaction of the others, the “me too mentality.” My suggestion — do something big. Give away some G–Cash, maybe have a few hundreds for daily raffles. Take a hint from SunCellular’s 24by7. ;)

  19. you know, i think you don’t understand how a business truly works. many things are of great ideas..but to see it through fruitition is something beyond great ideas..it means looking through different financial scenarios. if i may say so myself, financing a project is hard even for cash cows like the telecom industry. getting a new cell site up is harder than what is techinically possible, it means having management agree that we still need one and future revenues can support it.

    see, it’s not so easy to just give away “money” and there is a saying in economics that goes “there is no such thing as a free lunch”. and FYI, sun cellular isn’t doing that good, financially. flat growth for the past few months, same goes with both globe and smart. i see the financials and it’s not pretty.

    dingdong is right, globe is actually having a hard time creating partnerships and getting establishments agree to g-cash. and besides, g-cash is not globe’s core business/capability, it is giving their subscribers the best possible wireless and wireline services available.

    so please, before you get so gung-ho about this, there are factors such as reality that come into making business decisions. i think that’s the issue with a lot of people here, many are big dreamers and lack the foresight and the responsbility.

  20. which first, chicken or the egg? Both! ;-)

    Globe needs to build both user-base and merchant network at the same time. Each time they are able to add to the network, their network strengthens, and network connections increase exponentially, and usefulness increases likewise.

    grace, nice to have you in the discussion …. ;-) . saka na ako mag-comment ulit ….

    kapayapaan,
    ka edong

  21. grace:so please, before you get so gung-ho about this, there are factors such as reality that come into making business decisions. i think that’s the issue with a lot of people here, many are big dreamers and lack the foresight and the responsbility.

    Hey, this is reality — people think. No need to feel offended at all, no one is hitting on Globe or any target. I started this discussion to state one important point: an online gateway could turn G–Cash into a “Paypal for Filipinos.”

    The business side of things is something we’re all aware about. I suggested giving away G–Cash credits because this is exactly what Paypal did at startup — look at them now, maybe they’re even bigger than Globe. I meant doing something big because the longer it takes for the network to grow, the more potential revenues are lost.

    And if Globe doesn’t want to bite into the idea, maybe someone else will.

  22. hey i’m not offended, funny how most of you think that being passionate and how do i say it, verbose, constitute to being pissed off or being offended. my my…i think you guys need to go out with a more opinionated, driven, couthed and overtly educated set…the world goes beyond pisay and UP, guys. tsk tsk tsk.

    markku: I suggested giving away G–Cash credits because this is exactly what Paypal did at startup — look at them now, maybe they’re even bigger than Globe.

    in the first place, paypal was a start-up…start-ups are ready for a loss for at least 5 years. if you knew your business, you would know that. start-ups are ready to lose, established companies are more cautious because they have other concerns like day-to-day operations and their actual core business. paypal
    isn’t even a publicly listed company on its own, they were bought off by EBAY. that’s what start-up companies aim for, being bought by the big guys.

    revenues are not only driven by technical or savvy ideas like g-cash, it’s also driven by the people who actually eat them up. and as i said, FLAT GROWTH, meaning, the market is at its saturation point…the people do not have the MONEY. thus, the reluctance to spend MORE money by companies. this is called BUSINESS CYCLES.

    i just think some of you need a good dose of business acumen. and maybe you guys should start reading the economist or the asian wall street journal. i can lend you my subscriptions, how about that?

  23. grace: hey i’m not offended, funny how most of you think that being passionate and how do i say it, verbose, constitute to being pissed off or being offended. my my…i think you guys need to go out with a more opinionated, driven, couthed and overtly educated set…the world goes beyond pisay and UP, guys. tsk tsk tsk.

    Hahaha, it’s nice that we have these online discussions. :) I know you’re just being passionate about this. ;) Btw, may God bless your dog, I just saw your entry about it.

    in the first place, paypal was a start-up…start-ups are ready for a loss for at least 5 years.

    that’s what start-up companies aim for, being bought by the big guys.

    In essence, G–Cash as a service is a startup. Are you saying Globe cannot afford to lose money to increase market penetration? Or maybe it’s not the right time to lose money? I guess that brings us back to the chicken or the egg argument. Hehe.

    … and as i said, FLAT GROWTH, meaning, the market is at its saturation point…the people do not have the MONEY. thus, the reluctance to spend MORE money by companies. …

    I agree, there isn’t enough money right now. And I guess most companies are afraid to spawn their own market for new products. Hard times. :(

    i just think some of you need a good dose of business acumen. and maybe you guys should start reading the economist or the asian wall street journal. i can lend you my subscriptions, how about that?

    That would be nice. :) Thanks for enriching the discussion, we’ll be waiting for more from you.

  24. Tama ka dyan Markku, Globe is not a mediocre company, they have studied the Filipino market, lifestyle, spending habits, etc. I think that this is just the beginning for a new way of mobilizing transactions throughtout our country. In the long run, everyone will benefit from such “startups.” Just as Paypal has revolutionized online payments, I think this GCash program will revolutionize transactions in ways that we cannot fathom yet.

  25. Hi guys, hey markku,

    G-Cash as an international currency? It could happen, what with all the Filipinos scattered all over the world! Mwahahaha! to world domination!

    have a new G-Cash article on Technobiography. Would appreciate your comments.

    We have pics of the G-Cash ATM there ;-)

    ka edong
    Technobiography

  26. nice discussion here, insider and outsider point of views…

    the question remains, what will make G-Cash palatable with the masa and the elite? from the whirlwind of discussions i had, it seems G-Cash or S-Money only titilates the middle. The upper pyramid thinks its “kalokohan”, you go lower and its considered “a hassle”.

    IMHO, what would really help is “opening the platform”, this is the age of participation and collaboration. imagine if those m-commerce platforms could talk to each other just like banks do. also if they can’t innovate that fast, but the platform is open, somebody is bound to step up and do it for them. mash em up!

    people will punch thru any technological barrier if there is a real carrot at the end of the stick. :D

    cheers!

    nox

  27. It seems the focus of G-Cash are the mainstream businesses where money flows relatively, which is understandable.

    Has there been a study/market research about using it for the underground economy (like sari-sari stores, palengke, etc?). For sure, there will be some barriers like teaching them to get used to cashless transactions – but going over these things – aren’t the masses the real micropayment market? Wouldn’t those who buy AutoLoad in the 2-digit denominations become the logical choice for G-Cash? If this lifts off from this segment, profit margins will be realized thru an economy of scale.

  28. Paypal alone is bigger than Globe. They made over $200 mil in 2005.

    Online commerce solutions should be made as cheap as possible in Pinas. Just imagine if anyone can build an online store. We already have hundreds of sellers in Pex and Female Network. Providers should think of it as a numbers game, just like Paypal.

    However, it seems that ecommerce solutions in our country is aimed for deep-pocketed entrepreneurs only, even having server based in the Philippines costs an arm and a leg so we always have to be hosted elsewhere. And elsewhere is where all our money goes.

    Has anyone looked into Mozcom’s Pay Easy?

    https://www.payeasy.ph/about.asp I’ve been looking into a payment gateway with recurring monthly payment features. Has anyone

  29. berlin,

    Mozcom PayEasy’s fee is 6% of your gross transaction. That’s regardless of whether your buyer paid by PayPal, Visa/MC/Amex/Discover/JCB/Diners, Bancnet/Megalink ATM, GCash, Smart Money or UCPB my1time. We have large businesses, as well as, enterprising students selling goods and services on the side. You can email sales@payeasy.ph for more details.

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