We have been through a tough time since the economic crisis hit Spain in 2008. However, in light of the latest 2013 year end results, it seems there is finally some light at the end of the tunnel (and this time it´s not a train about to crash, swiftly running against us!) Spain’s Minister of Economy recently announced that the Spanish GDP rose up to 0.3% in the last quarter, finally shifting the negative trend of the last two years.
The Spanish market
The Mobile industry is certainly aligned with this changing trend. According to the latest figures published by CNMC (Comisión Nacional de los Mercado y la Competencia ) in Q3 2013 revenues from the Premium SMS business increased up to 31.5 Million Euros, representing more than a 15% increase when compared to the previous year, being the most relevant inflection point since the peak of 146.5 Million Euros reached back in Q1 2009.
In view of this changing pattern, I strongly believe that it´s a good time to invest in Spain. Various reasons makes this market particularly interesting:
- According to comScore analysis, in Europe, Spain is the country that leads the ranking in terms of smartphone penetration with 66 percent of mobile users owning a smartphone, with Android having the biggest stronghold with over 92 percent control of the market.
- Spain is also the European country with a high penetration rate for tablets coming in just after the UK (17.7%) with 17% of the smartphone´s owners that also have a tablet according to the ABI research . Italy and France reach hardly 15% penetration and Germany 13%.
- It’s an ideal environment for mobile carrier billing as post–paid contracts represent over 80% of total operator revenues according to CNMC 2013 publication.
Spain has the optimal conditions to make business within this sector: mature market, early adopter, always eager to engage with new digital technologies. The new media forecasts published by Zenithoptimedia  corroborate these facts: Spain ranks 8thposition worldwide before countries like the UK, USA or Israel for adoption of new media technology.
Furthermore, Spanish customers seem very at ease with using mobile payments. According to a survey done by TECHNOactivity  60% of the Spaniards are willing to pay for their purchases (online or offline) via mobile and 40% of those, prefer using a mobile payment system over credit or debit cards.
Mobile payment methods
Since its launch in the beginning of 2000´s, Premium SMS billing has proven to be historically the most common payment method in the mobile ecosystem. The record turnover was reached in 2008 with 526.9 Million Euros while the 2013 estimation is now around 120 Million Euros.
In 2013, we witnessed a new boost of SMS Premium due to the in- app payment system: Over 22 Million active users were downloading more than 4 Million applications per day according to The App Date  report published last September 2013 . The proliferation of Android devices and apps have been the key driver of this recent increase on Mobile Commerce figures.
Since 2010, several mobile direct billing solutions have been released to the market, easing the purchasing flow (just “one click”), improving user experience (customizable pages adapted to each service) and free price point set up (allowing up to 100 euros/transaction). These payment methods are getting more relevant in the market, representing almost 20-30% of the total mobile payments in Spain.
Why use Onebip in Spain?
Onebip is definitely a key player in the Spanish m-commerce ecosystem. Our offering is one of the most competitive in the market: a customized state-of-art solution leveraged by direct connections to all the major carriers, excellent relationships with operators resulting in the best commercial terms (business models and highest pay-outs), innovative flows, possibility of co-marketing agreements and a dedicated team of 25 people based locally, positioning ourselves as one of the best solutions for mobile payments. With a proven track record of successful case studies with multiple merchants, Onebip will keep maximizing your revenues and optimize your mobile payments.
Want to start working with us in Spain?
Get in touch with the Onebip team today at email@example.com
*Editor’s note: the author was a Neomobile emloyee until 2014