SumUp, one of the myriad European Square-style mobile card reader startups, has expanded its coverage footprint by rolling into an eleventh European market: Russia. SumUp is now operational in the U.K., Germany, Ireland, Austria, the Netherlands, Spain, Italy, France, Portugal, Belgium and now Russia, giving it a larger international geographical footprint than other European mobile point-of-sales rivals including iZettle and Rocket Internet-backed Payleven.
To support its Russia launch SumUp has opened a local office in Moscow, and partnered with Svyaznoy Group, a Russian retail and financial conglomerate, which will distribute SumUp’s card readers through its nationwide consumer electronics retail network of close to 3,000 stores.
Svyaznoy stores will also be using SumUp’s solution to accept card payments from its customers — giving SumUp another leg up in the market. The retailer, which specialises in the sale of phones, digital equipment and portable electronics, sells close to a third (30%) of all the smartphones in Russia, according to SumUp.
SumUp said Russian businesses can now sign up to its service in Svyaznoy stores as well as on its own website, and are able to receive native language assistance from its Moscow-based support team. Daniel Klein, SumUp CEO, said it’s targeting the more than 6 million small businesses in Russia, and also aiming to grow off rising smartphone usage.
“We see a real need for an easy and secure solution for card payment acceptance in the Russian market. We are excited to work with the strongest possible partner in Russia right from the start,” he said in a statement.
SumUp has been using a partnering strategy to build out its European payments business, including partnering with a women’s plumbers organisation, Stopcocks Women Plumbers, in the U.K.; a maker of iPad POS software in Europe; and with a taxi hailing app and an odd job software platform provider in Germany.
As with the myriad mobile payments players targeting small businesses, SumUp does not charge a monthly fee to businesses using its system but rather takes a 2.75% per card reader transaction charge. It accepts Visa, Mastercard and recently added support for Amex in the majority of its markets.