This article originally appeared on The Australian.
The Westpac-backed venture fund Reinventure has splashed its cash on Melbourne-based payments platform start-up Doshii, a spin-off of Australian point-of-sale vendor Impos.
Westpac is the largest investor in Reinventure, which recently launched a second $50 million fund to invest in about a dozen Australian technology ventures.
It comes amid a broader trend of Australia’s biggest banks investing in fintech companies aiming to disrupt the payments market, which has so far produced mixed results for the incumbent financial giants.
Doshii is the country’s only application programming interface company, and gives app developers a common platform that works with hundreds of point-of-sale systems. Its aim is to overcome a problem in the hospitality and retail sector where shopfronts often need to use several separate pieces of hardware for different apps.
The start-up means merchants can access all the apps they need on one single platform, such as cloud-based accounting packages and online delivery services, such as Deliveroo or UberEats.
“It simply isn’t viable for the enormous number of apps in the market to integrate with hundreds of POS companies on the other side,” Doshii Australia general manager David Engel. “Doshii solves this problem.”
The group was founded by young Australian entrepreneur Sean O’Meara, the chief of Impos. Doshii said it was “in market” with a number of hospitality and retail apps, including Mobi2Go, Nestle, SureFire, Tanda, Collect Loyalty and ANZ BladePay.
The first Reinventure fund, which was also seeded with $50m of funding in early 2014 by Westpac, invested in companies such as payments platform PromisePay, bitcoin platform CoinBase, and SME lending marketplace provider Valiant.
The second venture fund has doubled Westpac’s exposure to fintech start-ups. Both funds are required by law to be a long-term investor with a minimum investment term of five years and a maximum of 15 years.
SocietyOne, a Reinventure funding recipient, has since contributed to the competition facing the big four banks, having launched products in the personal loan, car finance and SME lending markets.
NAB, which has co-invested in some of the Reinventure-funded start-ups, has set up a $50m venture capital fund NAB Ventures. ANZ has a tie-up with Melbourne start-up incubator York Butter Factory.