International acceleration at its best: the journey of Zong from Geneva to Palo Alto

Zong is the world’s leader in mobile payments, allowing over 30 million customers to shop online without credit cards using only their mobile phones. The company raised over $27.5 million in VC funding and was acquired by eBay in 2011 for over $240 million.

In 2005 Echovox – a Swiss company – was pondering how to build on its success as a premium SMS platform focused mainly on French-speaking European countries. Sensing the potential for a global business, we invested in the company’s first round of capital, assumed a chairmanship role, and created a Silicon Valley branded subsidiary, ZONG, to capitalize on the booming virtual currency market.

Within 3 years, Zong became the world’s leader in mobile payments, serving 30 million customers across 250 carriers in over 45 countries. The company grew to serve the web’s top merchants, including Facebook, IMVU, and Habbo. In 2010, we raised a further $15 million for the company from Matrix Partners.

In 2011, eBay acquired Zong for $240 million in cash to become part of its PayPal division. As part of PayPal, Zong facilitated over $3 billion in transactions in 2012 and helped position eBay as the world leader in mobile payments.