Vimo Technology JSC, a mobile wallet provider, and Vietnam mPOS Technology JSC, which develops portable point-of-sale technology, will be combined and rebranded as NextPay Holdings. Nguyen Huu Tuat, chief executive officer of mPOS, will become CEO of the combined entity. Nguyen Hoa Binh, who founded the two Hanoi-based startups, will be NextPay’s chairman.

NextPay is in talks with investors to raise about $30 million and anticipates closing the round soon, Tuat said. The capital will help the company as it plans an expansion into Myanmar and Indonesia in 2020.

“MPOS’s business model is quite similar to Square in the U.S., in that any merchant can accept payments easily, and Vimo is a mobile wallet similar to Alipay,’’ Tuat said. “By merging these two businesses, we provide a one-stop payment solution for merchants.’’

Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc is trying to usher the country into the modern era of digital payments, reducing the amount of U.S. dollars in circulation and establishing the dominance of the Vietnamese dong. That means encouraging Vietnamese households to adopt credit cards, bank transfers and digital payments rather than carrying around piles of cash and bullion.

The merger is aimed at helping NextPay capitalize on the shift. The combined company will have a presence in 11 cities across Vietnam, with more than 35,000 acceptance points. Already, Vietnam has a young, tech-savvy population where 70% use smartphones.

North Ridge Partners Executive Director Michael Gethen and Chris Tran, the firm’s head of Asia, advised on the deal.

By Yoolim Lee - Bloomberg - June 10, 2019