Startups Bring Electronic Payments to Small Businesses

It wasn’t long ago that certain types of businesses remained cash-only for cost and logistical purposes. They wanted to accept credit cards, sure, but it simply wasn’t feasible.

Those days are gone. Now, virtually any business can accept credit cards, regardless of their style or scale.

Some examples of businesses, usually expected to be cash-only, that now often accept credit, include farmers’ markets, food trucks, and local repair shops. Traditional point-of-sale systems were once prohibitively costly and complicated for these smaller operations to utilize.

Even so, as consumers carry less cash and debt levels rise, debit has emerged as a more important payment tool than ever. Yet it’s also the one a small business is least likely to accept.

Today there are innovative startups changing the game, however.

One company disrupting the space is Dream Payments, a financial technology company based in Toronto. They recognized that smaller merchants often needed different requirements, such as mobility—many don’t have a stationary brick-and-mortar location—as well as flexible terms because their business levels typically fluctuate more.

“Merchants and merchant acquirers of all sizes need affordable, secure, and EMV mobile point of sale terminals and payment processing services,” Brent Ho-Young, CEO of Dream Payments, explains. “Dream is transforming commerce and the payment process for merchants through mobility,” Ho-Young notes.

Using an award-winning service like Dream Payments, a merchant can manage a credit transaction in four simple steps.

First, a merchant selects the product being purchased from their inventory. Next, they use the Dream Payments terminal and app to accept cash, credit, or debit. Then they send a digital receipt to the customer. Finally, they track transactions and customer information via a dashboard.

Accepting both credit and debit can greatly improve one’s business. It can improve cash flow, boost sales, and level the playing field with competition. And customers are always happy when they know a merchant can accept whatever type of payment they prefer. Which is why apps like Dream Payments are changing the game for smaller businesses in Canada.

With secure transactions and analytics that let merchants know their customers better than ever, it’s no wonder that fintech startups are growing fast and shifting the landscape in how small companies handle payments.

Dream Payments, a mobile payment platform, this week announced that it has raised $6 million in funding from a group of institutional investors, including Blue Sky Capital, Real Ventures, and Rouge River Capital.

The Dream Payments platform powers merchant commerce and enables merchants to use mobile point of sale terminals to accept all forms of payments including magstripe, EMV credit and debit cards, and Apple Pay. The terminal works with existing iOS or Android smartphones, tablets or integrates with traditional point of sale systems.

The Toronto startup is also opening up its Software Development Kit to third party developers to extend and deliver value-added services to the Dream Payments’ ecosystem.

“Merchants and merchant acquirers of all sizes need affordable, secure, and EMV mobile point of sale terminals and payment processing services,” said Brent Ho-Young, CEO of Dream Payments.  “Dream is transforming commerce and the payment process for merchants through mobility.”

The funding, says Ho-Young, provides “a foundation for us to launch the business.”

“Dream is bringing to market a new approach to the payment industry that is a perfect fit for transforming the mobile payment market,” said Janet Bannister, General Partner of Real Ventures and newly appointed Director for Dream.  “

The Canadian company was founded in July 2014 and was the IVIE award winner for the Canadian Payments Benefiting Acquirers Innovation Award by ACT Canada in the fall of 2014.