Home eBay Acquires Mobile Payments Company Zong to Boost PayPal

eBay Acquires Mobile Payments Company Zong to Boost PayPal

Today, eBay announced that it has purchased mobile payments company Zong for $240 million, to integrate into PayPal.

By buying Zong, eBay is attempting to position PayPal to be a leader in mobile payments for the years to come. Mobile payments are expected to be a $670 billion industry by 2015 according to report from Juniper Research. Zong is a middleman connection between merchants and telephone companies that allows users to make mobile purchases with carrier billing. Can Zong keep PayPal relevant in the mobile payment arms race that includes Google, Square, Verifone and many others?

Buying Zong is a talent acquisition by eBay as much as it is a technology addition. “The company expects that Zong will add complementary technology and talent that help strengthen PayPal’s leadership position in mobile payments and digital goods,” eBay said in a press release. Zong is connected to 250 carrier networks worldwide and claims a reach of 3.2 billion mobile devices.

The idea is to be able to use PayPal with the nine million merchants worldwide that accept the payment from the platform. Users can also buy digital goods with PayPal through Zong. PayPal expects to process $3 billion in mobile payments in 2011. Juniper said that mobile payments will be a $240 billion industry segment this year.

PayPal is definitely feeling the pressure of the competition. When Google Wallet was announced, PayPal executives were one of the first to offer comments to ReadWriteWeb. Here is what Anug Nayar said at the time:

“Put simply – before you try mobile (or any other payments) solution, you need to be great at payments. There is so much more than just technology involved to get payments right … Any new solution must deliver something better than the existing way to do it. Not just different … better.”

Will Zong make PayPal better? Probably. It will also help it become a more ubiquitous option among all cellphones (smart and feature phones) devices across the world, which could make it a very important acquisition for eBay.

About ReadWrite’s Editorial Process

The ReadWrite Editorial policy involves closely monitoring the tech industry for major developments, new product launches, AI breakthroughs, video game releases and other newsworthy events. Editors assign relevant stories to staff writers or freelance contributors with expertise in each particular topic area. Before publication, articles go through a rigorous round of editing for accuracy, clarity, and to ensure adherence to ReadWrite's style guidelines.

Get the biggest tech headlines of the day delivered to your inbox

    By signing up, you agree to our Terms and Privacy Policy. Unsubscribe anytime.

    Tech News

    Explore the latest in tech with our Tech News. We cut through the noise for concise, relevant updates, keeping you informed about the rapidly evolving tech landscape with curated content that separates signal from noise.

    In-Depth Tech Stories

    Explore tech impact in In-Depth Stories. Narrative data journalism offers comprehensive analyses, revealing stories behind data. Understand industry trends for a deeper perspective on tech's intricate relationships with society.

    Expert Reviews

    Empower decisions with Expert Reviews, merging industry expertise and insightful analysis. Delve into tech intricacies, get the best deals, and stay ahead with our trustworthy guide to navigating the ever-changing tech market.