55 percent of Mexican banks have no strategy for mobile services via cell phone

In spite of the fact that there will be more than 90 million cell phone lines in 2010, more than half of the existing financial institutions in our country have not provided for any strategy to offer mobile financial services to date. Such are the findings of a study by Spanish company Latinia conducted among the region’s 100 main financial institutions. Latinia, maker of messaging platform products, will open offices in Mexico starting in July.
In Mexico, the study explains, each hour, more than three million SMS text messages are sent. This represents a daily volume of 80 million messages. However, barely 1 of every 4 institutions has a commercial strategy toward its account holders based on cellular messaging for, for instance, checking balances, transfers and bill paying, the study reveals. A greater presence of services based on other technologies has been observed. These services include WAP, which is browser-based, although in this case the dependence on bandwidth offered by mobile technology is much greater, a barrier not present with SMS messaging.

In addition, the growing demand of bank patrons who use traditional services has saturated the number of available branches in Mexico. Therefore, SMS services may increase daily transactions with a much lower cost for banks.

Latinia is an information technology solution company specializing in text message banking products, and it operates in Spain with clients such as BBVA and Banco Popular or Santander in Puerto Rico, financial institutions with a strong presence in Mexico.

The Spanish company developed its own technology for banks in Spanish-speaking countries, and it enjoys a position of leadership in Southern Europe where the number of cell phone lines exceeds the number of inhabitants by 110 percent in some countries.

“Mexico is a very attractive market due to its economic growth and its technology platform that urgently requires new technologies for banking services”, stated Francesc Pérez, Latinia’s business development director. The company will offer products for integrating and operating services via messaging (SMS) to banks and other financial institutions.

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