Tantau Wireless Banking near Liftoff in Scandinavia

By Power, Carol | American Banker, June 16, 2000 | Go to article overview
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Tantau Wireless Banking near Liftoff in Scandinavia


Power, Carol, American Banker


Two major Scandinavian banks will soon offer wireless banking to a substantial numbers of customers using technology from Tantau Software Inc., a Compaq spinoff. Tantau, based in Austin, Tex., is considered an emerging force. Thirty financial services companies around the world have installed its system for testing, but Nordic Baltic Holding of Finland and SEB Group of Stockholm may wind up being the first to roll it out. Nordic Baltic, formerly MeritaNordenbanken, seems to be in the lead. It is wrapping up a 10,000-user test of the software and expects to have 250,000 wireless banking customers by yearend, said Peter Klante, Tantau's vice president of marketing. Nordic has 1.5 million Internet banking customers. SEB Group expects to make the service available to its 5,000 most-valued online customers by the end of the summer, said Anders Bons, its head of strategy and competitive intelligence. "We wanted a quick start," Mr. Bons said. "The vision for our bank is to become the leading European e-bank by utilizing the Internet and mobile channels." SEB has 500,000 Internet banking customers. Mr. Bons said it expects to have five million mobile-banking customers by 2004. The 5,000 customers in SEB's initial target group will be offered the ability to buy and sell stocks using wireless phones. Later SEB will offer the rest of its Internet banking customers the ability to check their account balances, pay bills, and transfer funds by wireless phone. Mr. Bons said SEB is still deciding whether it will give smart phones away to the 5,000 premium customers or wait for subsidies from the telecommunications companies.

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