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Flint Mobile Announces Verizon-Led $9 Million Investment Round

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With a just-announced $9.4 million in funding led by Verizon Ventures, Flint Mobile now stands with more than $20 million in total capital. Participating in the Series C alongside Verizon Ventures were existing investors Digicel, Storm Ventures, True Ventures, and new investor, Peninsula Ventures.

A specialist in providing point-of-sale solutions for mobile merchants, Flint Mobile has carved out a niche for itself as the hardware-free Square alternative. The company’s iOS and Android apps rely on a combination of card scanning and manual entry to enable merchants to accept credit and debit cards without a card reader. The technology can create and send invoices, works with Passbook loyalty coupons, and features QuickBooks Online integration, as well.

Keeping his cards close to the vest, Flint Mobile CEO Greg Goldfarb had more to say about how and why his company had expanded its offering beyond basic mobile payments than why Verizon Ventures choose to invest in his company. With regard to the former, Goldfarb pointed out that the same small, independent merchants who relied on Flint for payments had started to wonder if there were ancillary services – such as invoicing and advance billing – Flint could provide.
The short answer was “yes.” The somewhat longer answer is Sell Online, the new service launched by Flint at the beginning of the month. Sell Online allows merchants to add a customizable button to their website (or as a link that can be sent through email or social media) that keeps customers on the page, provides a secure, encrypted checkout, and makes online sales and orders easy to track and manage.
There are no additional costs for merchants using Sell Online. Debit card transactions are 1.95%, with credit card transactions at 2.95%, the same as Flint’s regular fees.
With regard to the company’s future with Verizon, Goldfarb’s refusal to talk much detail about the investment hasn’t stopped others from wondering what might lurk beyond the infusion of capital into Flint. For example while VentureBeat’s coverage quoted Goldfarb linking the new capital to further product development, Gigaom’s coverage of the announcement tantalizingly hinted at the possibility of Verizon offering Flint to its customers “as a simple application download.”
Based in Redwood City, California, and founded in April 2011, Flint demoed its technology as part of FinovateSpring 2012 in San Francisco. See video of Flint in action.