Surepay looks to regionMichael Armstrong, chief executive officer of Illuminat which owns Surepay. (Ricardo Leacock)
By Natasha Beckles | Wed, June 06, 2012 - 12:03 AM
ELECTRONIC BILL PAYMENT PROVIDER SurePay is set to spread its wings beyond Barbados through a franchise model which will drive foreign exchange to the island.
Michael Armstrong, chief executive officer of Illuminat, which owns SurePay, said the company launched in Trinidad a few years ago and was now poised to expand throughout the Caribbean and beyond.
“In 2011 we developed a franchise model.
“Based on the success of SurePay in Barbados we decided that we want to carry that success – the model that we’ve designed and developed here – outside Barbados,” he said of the service launched locally in 2003.
Armstrong was speaking last Wednesday night during the Information Society of Barbados’ monthly meeting at the Accra Beach Hotel.
He said the transactions that are processed each day would be processed through the service centre in Barbados.
“It’s all done via the Internet through our central processing centre here with back-up in Trinidad as well.
“Therefore . . . it’s not just simply a one-time licence fee for the franchise model but recurring revenue from a transaction perspective on a daily basis which brings foreign exchange back to Barbados.
The CEO said the company had put together a franchise model that captures all of the technology, methodologies, administrative procedures and advertising in one package which will be launched in the Caribbean initially.
“We launched a franchise service in British Virgin Islands late 2011 and we are launching two more franchises, one in Guyana and the other in St Lucia,” he said, noting that these will be launched in early June and mid-July respectively.
“Right now we’re speaking to potential franchisees in Grenada and St Vincent and we will be rolling it out in Antigua sometime later this year or in the early part of next year.
“We also have an interest from The Bahamas but the first approach with regard to the franchising is in the Eastern Caribbean and the wider Caribbean.”
Armstrong said the company wanted to go beyond the Caribbean next year with two strategic international partners expressing interest in the brand in Latin America.
“We may not be doing it directly. We may be doing it through one of our international partners but the fact is that the brand SurePay will not just simply be moving through the Eastern Caribbean and the wider Caribbean but beyond,” he said.
SurePay has between 110 000 and 120 000 customers in Barbados, 31 registered billers and 44 collection points in six parishes.
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