MeritaNordbanken Group launches the world's first WAP-banking services
MeritaNordbanken Group launches the world's first WAP banking services
MeritaNordbanken customers will be the first in the world to be able to handle
their banking business via WAP phones. Customers in Finland will be able to
access the WAP service immediately using their existing Solo identification
codes. In Sweden, WAP banking will be available in the first half of 2000.
The mobile banking services have been developed jointly by MeritaNordbanken
and Nokia, the world's leading supplier of mobile phones. Thanks to the WAP
banking service, the bank is now at its customers' disposal wherever they are.
A WAP terminal can be used for account and credit card transaction monitoring,
account-to-account transfers and bill payments. It also enables shopping at
MeritaNordbanken's virtual marketplace, the Solo Mall, already familiar to
Internet banking customers. All these services will be free of charge until
the end of February 2000. Thereafter a monthly charge of FIM 4.00 will be
introduced. Stock trading will be the next service to be made available via
The phenomenal success of MeritaNordbanken's Solo electronic services is based
on easy use and the constantly growing range of products and access channels
"A phone providing access to such a wide range of banking facilities is highly
useful for its users", says Bo Harald, Executive Vice President,
MeritaNordbanken Group, Network Banking. "The threshold is low as the routines
are already familiar to users of our Solo electronic banking service. With a
terminal equipped with WAP capabilities, customers have a superior range of
access channels at their disposal. They can log on to the service any time
anywhere within the network service area."
"Our home markets Finland and Sweden have the world's highest mobile phone
penetration rate: in Finland more than 60 per cent and in Sweden 50 per cent.
We believe that mobile solutions will become an increasingly popular channel
for banking and electronic commerce. Merita Bank's balance and transaction
information service based on GSM text messages is already accessed more than
200,000 times per month."
MeritaNordbanken is clearly Europe's leading bank group in network banking.
The introduction of WAP banking facilities further strengthens its position as
a trend-setter and leader of service development. MeritaNordbanken has a total
of 840,000 Internet customers with user identification codes set to activate
also WAP phone access. The aim is to bring the number of Internet customers to
more than one million by the end of this year.
"It has been a pleasure to work with MeritaNordbanken, a recognized leader in
Internet banking and a visionary in the wireless arena, in implementing their
mobile banking services built on the Nokia WAP Server", says Gerhard Romen,
Vice President, Nokia Wireless Software Solutions. "We are impressed by the
speed of the deployment of the services as well as pleased to have such a
demanding service as banking being one of the first to be commercially
In July, MeritaNordbanken was the first Nordic banking group to be accepted as
a member of the WAP Forum, in which Nokia is a founder member. The aim of the
WAP Forum is to create an open environment for the development of Internet-
based services and applications for digital handsets and other wireless
Services through data networks are deeply rooted in the MeritaNordbanken
Group. They began in 1982 with automatic telephone payments and were expanded
to PC services in 1984, GSM in 1992, the Internet in 1996 and TV in 1998.
Today, almost all banking services can be carried out over the Internet. The
Solo service brand is now being launched in Sweden. The aim is to make these
services available to customers throughout the MeritaNordbanken Group's home
Bo Harald, Executive Vice President, MeritaNordbanken Group, tel. +358 9 165
Jyrki Rosenberg, Communications Manager, Nokia Venture Organisation, tel. +358
9 511 62127.
Presentation material and pictures suitable for printing are available from
MeritaNordbanken's website www.meritanordbanken.com. For further information
on the service, see also www.merita.fi.