Gate2Play Releases New APIs for E-Commerce Sites

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This week, Gate2Play has rolled out new support for various e-commerce platforms, to help online merchants connect to its list of regional payment gateways.

Specifically, the Jordan-based e-commerce service company has released APIs for platforms built on Magento, Wordpress, WP e-Commerce, Drupal, Joomla, OpenCart, and sites built in programming languages PHP, JSP, .NET, ASP, Python.

Previously, Gate2Play had supported PHP, JSP, and .NET, while offering to create custom solutions for clients. Now, any website can freely connect directly to its comprehensive list of payment gateways that includes prepaid options Cashi, Cashna, CashU, Dixipay, Filspay, OneCard, and Ukash (sense a branding theme?) as well as PayPal, Mastercard and Visa.

Gate2Play’s focus on APIs can’t help but be inspired by the success of U.S.-based company Stripe, says CEO Muhannad Ebwini.

Stripe, most recently valued at around $500 million in the $20 million series B round it raised in July, enables “payments for developers.” Like PayPal and Google Checkout, it handles aspects like merchant accounts, integration with banks and payment gateways, and credit card storage, making it simple for stores to just embed their services and start selling.

It didn’t take long for the Samwer Brothers to know a good idea when they saw one; Rocket Internet cloned Stripe last August and just raised 10 million euros ($ 13 million) from Holtzbrinck Ventures and Sunstone Capital last month.

Gate2Play is now focusing on building a similar platform for the Middle East, where the payment gateway market is fragmented, with each service covering a different set of countries.

Commission fees are typically much higher than Stripe’s 2.9% plus $0.30 per transaction; our list of payment gateways reveals commissions ranging from 2% to 10%.

In the final segment of our Online Payment panel at CoE E-Commerce last year, attendees took the payment gateways to task, asking if gateways need to be as expensive as they are, generating heated debate.

Right now, Gate2Play charges, on average, a 3-4% commission on credit cards transactions for e-commerce companies, and a 4-5% commission for companies selling virtual goods. Non credit card transactions can be charged up to 8%. Ebwini hopes to eventually lower commission costs across the board, however. One method would be to guarantee gateways and banks a certain level of transaction volume, which will become more and more feasible as the market continues to grow.

“With the launch of new websites like Sallaty, Wysada, Desado, and others, I see e-commerce continuing to boom,” says Ebwini. Gate2Play, which has integrated with several young startups and Oasis500 graduates, as well as Turkish powerhouse Peak Games and “some of the world's biggest gaming platforms and social networks,” has seen a 50% increase in the number of transactions completed on its platform over the past two months.

By building its support for various e-commerce platforms, it's hoping to continue the trend.

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