BlackBerry announces three-year deal with EnStream for secure financial transactions

By Adam Zeis on 12 Jun 2014 08:21 am EDT

BlackBerry has announced today a three-year agreement with EnStream, a mobile payments venture collectively owned by Bell, Rogers and TELUS. Through the agreement, EnStream will use the BlackBerry infrastructure to enable banks like RBC, TD and CIBC to "securely provision sensitive payment card credentials into any smartphone capable of near field communication."

Mobile payments are big for BlackBerry, both thanks to NFC-enabled devices as well as proven security on handsets, so this is a great announcement for both EnStream and BlackBerry as more and more financial institutions and retailers adopt transactions over NFC.

Press Release

BlackBerry Expands Commitment to Mobile Payments Management Services

Company Announces Three-Year Agreement with EnStream to Support Secure Financial Transactions

WATERLOO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - June 12, 2014) - BlackBerry Limited (NASDAQ: BBRY)(TSX: BB), a world leader in mobile communications, today announced a new three-year agreement with EnStream LP, a mobile payments joint venture owned by Canadian wireless carriers Bell, Rogers and TELUS, to provide a secure platform that supports transaction services between leading banks and consumers.

Under the agreement, EnStream will leverage BlackBerry's proven and reliable infrastructure to enable financial institutions, including Royal Bank of Canada, TD Bank Group, CIBC and Desjardins, and mobile operators to securely provision sensitive payment card credentials into any smartphone capable of near field communication.

Today the mobile payments space is primed for growth. According to Gartner, "The total value of transactions using mobile technology is expected to grow from $35 billion in 2012 to $173 billion in 2017, at a compound annual growth rate of 31 percent. This projection includes merchandise purchases, ticketing and bill payments, while it excludes person-to-person payments and airtime top-ups."(1)

Supporting mobile payments reinforces BlackBerry's ability to provide unique services that help enterprise customers deploy secure mobile solutions that help promote productivity among their workforce and drive new revenue streams. Working with EnStream demonstrates BlackBerry's strategy to extend its core enterprise mobility technologies in new and emerging industries.

"BlackBerry has proven through our decades of experience in enterprise mobility that we have the ideal infrastructure and security capabilities to protect users' data when new capabilities such as mobile payments emerge," said John Sims, President of Global Enterprise Services, BlackBerry. "Together with EnStream and partners like them around the world, BlackBerry can better reach customers and provide a complete solution for banks with opportunities in the mobile payments space."

"EnStream, with BlackBerry, is already serving a number of banks and mobile operators, and is becoming a hub for payment credential delivery to smartphones in Canada," said Almis Ledas, Chief Operating Officer, Enstream LP. "We expect most major Canadian banks and mobile operators to connect through this platform to meet consumer demand for efficient and safe digital transactions."

In order to provide the platform for EnStream, BlackBerry needed to protect the sensitive data associated with financial transactions and meet the stringent requirements of the payment industry. This included complying with regulations and earning PCI, Visa and MasterCard certification.

"Canada is a leading global region in the adoption of technology and mobile payments, making it a key market for MasterCard innovation," said Nicolas Dinh, Vice President of Emerging Payments, MasterCard. "Safe and secure digital transactions are the backbone of our network and mobile payment ecosystem, and BlackBerry's involvement in the payment chain will help build trust in Canada and abroad."

"Canada is leading the world in mobile payments adoption and Visa's continued focus on innovation is underpinned by our commitment to security and reliability," said Derek Colfer, Director of Mobile, Visa. "We support BlackBerry's efforts to offer a secure mobile payment service that will help facilitate mobile payments."

Given its requirements for security, the mobile payments space continues to be an area of focus for BlackBerry. In addition to today's announcement, BlackBerry previously launched BBM Money in Indonesia, which allows BBM customers to transfer funds and conduct other types of financial transactions using BBM.

Topics: EnStream NFC Apps

Adam Zeis Adam Zeis "Mobile Nations Content Strategist" 3740 (articles) 2892 (forum posts)

Reader comments

BlackBerry announces three-year deal with EnStream for secure financial transactions


I'm actually wondering why BBM-Money hasn't been rolled out to more countries. I hope it isn't because of government regulations.
I love the idea behind BBM-Money. If they found a way to get online retailers to also allow BBM-Money payments, that would be interesting.

Q10SQN100-1/ CB10'n

BBM Money is REAL money transfers unlike bitcoin. There's no need for a whole new currency with its own trust issues. Just enable hyper mobile money exchange in the already existing economy!

From my Neutrino Powered Z10

What is "real" money? Depends on what your talking about, but most times it's fiat currency, aka money created by decree by a central government. But even more broadly, real money is anything used as a unit of exchange, something that a group of people agree has value. That's it. It's not like the American dollar is backed up by gold anymore. So Bitcoin is just as real as many other currencies, unless you want to pay your taxes.

But who likes taxes anyway ;)

Buy a bb, get a droid for free

The American dollar is still backed by gold not entirely but still is as a percentage always has been. They it was backed has changed drastically.

The Canadian dollar has been backed by Gold a total of three times in our dollars history hasn't been since '71?

I completely agree with everything else you've said good job explaining it.

Posted using CB10 via my Z30 Dark Knight!

Can you BBM me ten bux, darling? I ran out of petrol and left my wallet at home...

Use cases...

"No Q10?" -> "Buy from Chen... "

Keep up the good fight BlackBerry, we are routing for you! ;)

PS, John tell AT&T to carry Z30's, we want one.

Posted via CB10

I see big enthusiasm for those news. But...what I see, this is just that BB become data provider for business. BB have big infrastructure from better times and know they have free capacity. Of course, it good for BB but it has nothing with their core business.
Maybe I am wrong... Can somebody explain what is so "freaking awesome" on this news?

I think you don't understand the difficulties in providing secure payment services. It has little to do with data storage/big capacity (?) and more with providing secure transaction capacity. If you control the service, then you control who and how it can be used. Just ask yourself a simple question. Why can't Apple and Google with their gazillon of dollars do something as simple as a wire transfer and debit payment. It's not like they haven't tried. It all comes down to the platform and the service infrastructure behind it.

Read my blog specifically on old posts how this infrastructure began just 2-3yrs ago. You'll have some background.

You're correct that BlackBerry can and most likely, when al else fails, will become a backbone infrastructure to mobile traffic to internet connected machines, cars, and payments. Don't forget this is what QNX was born to do networking devices/services in a secure and fail safe way. ;)

Posted using CB10 via my Z30 Dark Knight!

According to analysts, BlackBerry will be bankruptcy sooner than three years!?!?

Got to love Wall street and the lies and misinformation they put out to pump their anointed stocks like Apple.

Posted via CB10

Blackberry is going to sell mobile hardware but on a low profile and is going strong on is focusing on the new era for internet,payment and secure business for all included for ios,windows and android. This is how the name Blackberry survive and mobile hardware is getting to the background.

There has to be some kind of traffic based recurring payment. As traffic increases, so will the revenues, which should flow immediately to the bottom line, since the infrastructure is already built and paid for.

From my Neutrino Powered Z10

Recurring, infrastructure-based fees are great for a company's stability. Could see this replace BIS as an income stream...

"No Q10?" -> "Buy from Chen... "

Hope this is done better than the Timmy App that works great if the cashiers understood it better. Most never heard of NFC or using a cell phone. No matter how many times i say yes paying with timmy card but need the terminal they see my phone assume it's an android and hand me a bar scanner thing. I'm tired of carrying bank cards and credit cards. Lets speed up NFC this isn't new technology

Still rockin my PlayBook and a Z30

That has happened to me very often, if they see that I will pay with my phone they think that I will pay with a credit card (Visa), so I don't show my phone, I just tell them that I am paying with my timmy card then I take my phone to pay using nfc.

Posted via CB10

I hear ya. Same issue here in Winnipeg. Just tell the Tim's employee you are paying with a Tims Gift Card... they'll give you the payment terminal thinking your going to swipe your card... Tap ur phone, and you're good to go.

Yup. That's exactly what I do as well. However from my experience, it doesn't work all the time because not all Tim Hortons locations have Tap to Pay enabled yet on their payment terminals and in some cases, they say "the tap to pay function isn't working right now." That being said, I try to pay by tapping my phone on the terminal whenever I'm at a Tim Hortons location. It's really convenient and I hope to see more mobile payment options become available for BlackBerry users like us.

Happens to me too.
I use it as an opportunity to boast about the benefits of BB.
"Yeah, this is a BlackBerry. You don't have to scan it like the other phones, you just have to tap."
They always seem impressed, and say something like... "Cool. I didn't know that!"

Good job John Sims!
Tie up with every major bank and then it will be a BlackBerry backend everywhere! It will be more $$$ for bbry :)

Posted via CB10... and my awesome Z10

This could be HUGE! If they can replicate this service provision as it rolls out in other countries, the volumes (and revenues which will be almost completely profit) will grow exponentially! This is the recurring revenue base they need to replace the BIS recurring revs as they fade out.

From my Neutrino Powered Z10

Well hopefully CIBC will create a native BlackBerry 10 app. When I asked about this some time ago, they told me that they were not going to. Mind you, the android app works fine but it's the principle.

Posted via CB10

I hate to say it but the US still thinks depositing checks via mobile is a big feature. Checks are becoming a thing of the past in so many places. With regard to NFC, you have to wonder if Apple is going to put in a chip in their devices one day. It's important for the growth of NFC in many places like NA and Europe.

Posted via CB10

I read this with great anticipation, but it looks to be just in Canada, unless TD group is more than just in Canada, can anyone clarify this? Ay

TD does have American branches, but the financial IT system is independent. It could mean though that TD America would be next in line. Banking in Canada is the most mobile in the Western world, with NFC, TAP and Chip tech pretty up to date.

Let's hope BlackBerry was smart enough to have the contract state that a BB10 app is required for anyone using this tech!!!!

Posted via CB10

Please advise me, is this really a big deal, the one I needed to keep my BlackBerry 10 excitement simmering?

Just yesterday I made a comment in some news article that I need some reassurance on my mobile brand of choice.

Posted via CB10

Is good news for Blackberry. If you have and Android, Blackberry or Windows phone that have NFC you will be able to use your phone to pay at the terminals and BlackBerry will charge probably per transaction that is made. iPhone doesn't have NFC.

Posted via CB10

Hope this works better than Suretap (CIBC/Rogers venture) ... While that program has potential, the software or registration process is absolutely terrible. Took me 7 calls to CIBC tech support (no fault of my own, their software refused to work) to get the NFC payment app working.

Also took me a few phone calls to CIBC to get it working but once it was setup it's worked perfectly every time I use it.

Posted via CB10

Man, that Z30 is a pretty phone. I just love mine! For the life of me I can't understand why you never see any in the stores. Go BlackBerry go!!


I assume that this is essentially the canadian version of ISIS wallet in the states ( mobile payment system owned by the service providers that pretty much nobody uses). A while ago I read a post that said that a company was going to be developing ISIS wallet for blackberry, does anyone know about its status ? My concern is that with T-mobile and Blackberry going their separate ways, a NFC driven blackberry capable of mobile payments might just be vapor ware. Its something I would like but its not enough of a deal breaker to switch carriers.

I'm hoping that if the rumors are true that the Iphone 6 comes with NFC because this might be the rising tide that lifts all boats.

I would really like to see Umi's take on this news. This is the first new line of business that I know of that is utilizing Blackberries true asset and competitive edge, the BES network. If they can build solutions that leverage this asset I can see them replacing revenue lost from BES fees from consumers.

Don't expect that to happen soon. Chris is too busy reviewing consumer apps and writing fluff pieces. Too bad as it is dragging down his analytical skills.

Way to use their assets. Great move Chen. They have a huge network just sitting there.

Posted via CB10

This sounds like the Canadian version of Isis. Both come from a partnership between the big 3 carriers.

Posted via CB10

I'm looking forward to royal bank / visa to use nfc and photo check deposit. I've had lots of problems with tims cashiers. One insisted I couldn't use my phone. I tapped the terminal as she pulled it back. Payment registered. She stared at it then called the manager like I was scamming her.

Posted via CB10

I was so disgusted that I got a Samsung s4 only three months into a contract instead of z10 .blackberry should have given my money back or upgrade to the z30

Posted via the Android CrackBerry App!

Next phone is the one +one at less than the price of a second hand z 10. blackberry my arse you are a dinosaur

Posted via the Android CrackBerry App!

if the exclusion of Wind and Mobilicity from this consortium doesn't set of anti-competitive alarm bells somewhere I'm Ottawa, all hope is lose: corporations own the Canadian government.

Posted via CB10

Im not sure how this is anticompetitive, in the states the three (AT&T, tmobile and I think Sprint) are all backing ISIS, and verizon is going another way. if wind and mobilicity really want to offer this to their customers, they are free to go it alone or pay higher fees to those that bore all of the development costs.

This is my own perspective, it would be great if there were only one standard and its the presence of these two or three different standards that is the anchor that really keeps the development of the digital wallet from going anywhere because no one wants to back a technology that may or may not get crushed by some competing product. so long as its the carriers that are driving this all we are going to get is fragmentation.

it might get apple to throw their hat into the ring to be the impetus to get the carriers to agree to cross platform compatibility but I seriously doubt it. If the iphone6 has NFC, it will be lauded as the greatest thing since sliced bread despite the fact it was largely ignored on Blackberry and android phones.

This is funny, because it's what Apple and Google tried to do before BlackBerry thought to jump in the pool.

The "funny" part is that it's like BlackBerry is just now realizing it. I can see it now...

"Waaaait a minute...we've got the best security in the biznis!" "Why don't we...nah, they'd never go for it".

"No. No, hold on there. "You might be on to something. "Those other guys tried, but couldn't do it because they don't have our security capabilities."
"We just signed on a HEALTH CARE Company, for Christ's sake!"
"We work with Governments! "We can DO this!"

For me, this should've been a no-brainer as soon as the technology was vetted. If I were Jon, I'd find every nook and cranny where little gems like this could possibly hide. BlackBerry is the Lord of the security realm. Rule your kingdom! Show them...! Display your might! Unleash...the POWAAAAAAAH!!

Posted via CB10

Super! I'm with the absolute best phone; however, I may have to switch banks. (I'm talking to you BMO. You were the slowest off the mark foe a BB10 app. Please don't leave is behind again.)

Most likely posted via CB10 from my amazing Z30, but may have been posted from my awesome PlayBook.

BMO is still hurting from their premature jump into online banking back in 1996 or so - long before their technology allowed real time transactions. They haven't been first into anything technological since.

Posted via CB10

I truly hope the payment system for TD app will come soon to BlackBerry 10 because of this deal.

Posted via CB10

I encourage everyone to write directly to CIBC Senior Executive Management and demand that they add support for ALL BlackBerry devices, specifically the Passport, Classic and Z30, which most of us have upgraded to.

I posted their contact information in the Reviews section of BlackBerry World for their Mobile Banking and Payment Apps, and it seems that they were deleted? If you want CIBC to support your new BlackBerry device, then write to them and tell them! If they don't know what the customers want, then we need to let them know. If enough of us complain and ask for it, then the sooner they will provide it.

The FIRST mobile payment in Canada was done using a BlackBerry and CIBC Mobile Payment App at a Tim Horton's.
Very Canadian indeed! So why would CIBC stop supporting the MOST secure mobile devices on the market?

Pass this along to all your friends and family and ask them to write to CIBC as well. Thanks everyone!

Here is the contact information for the individuals responsible for Mobile Payment Innovation and Integration:
Senior Vice President - Payments Innovation & Integration
Vice President - Payments Innovation & Integration
Smart Phone support team