Calgary-based Redfall Technologies takes aim at PayPal’s market
Against the Odds: Small Fish, Big Pond
by Alberta Venture Staff
It’s one thing to create a high-tech startup. It’s quite another to create one that has to go head-to-head with PayPal and compete against Google, too. But that’s the challenge that Calgary-based Redfall Technologies Inc. has to face. It went live with the beta version of its online payment platform, Vogogo, in April 2011, just a month before Google introduced its own platform, called Google Wallet. Still, Geoff Gordon, the managing partner at Redfall, likes his chances. “There are lots of big players, but it’s such a big market that even someone like PayPal doesn’t even have half of one per cent of the market,” he says. “That’s how big it is.”
Illustration Sean Alzetta
Vogogo is hoping to set itself apart from its competitors by leaving the point-of-sale transactions to them and focusing instead on commercial transactions. “Lots of businesses still use paper invoicing and paper cheques,” Gordon says. “There are still millions and millions of businesses in North America that do that, so there’s really a large market segment that hasn’t been addressed when it comes to online payments and we’re really going after that service market.”
Vogogo’s online payment system generates electronic invoices and emails them to a company’s client. Vogogo charges per transaction and customers don’t have to sign up to settle the bill. Vogogo’s base system has been tailored to serve different niche markets, such as Vogogo Biz or Vogogo Rent. In the future, the company hopes users will help create new applications that Vogogo could adopt.
Whether or not businesses choose to adopt Vogogo or another online payment system, Gordon says it will be where commerce is conducted in the future. “I think, just like in Europe where it’s very rare to see someone write a paper cheque, 10 years from now it’ll be the same in North America.”