MILAN (Reuters) - Europe's biggest utility Enel ENEI.MI has signed a deal with Italian digital payments group SIA to help it develop new financial digital services, the two said on Thursday, part of a push to help customers pay bills and manage accounts online.
Enel X, the utility’s new digital services division, has launched a wider program to compete in the payments and financial services market through partnerships.
It follows a recent deal with Swedish open banking platform Tink to help power its digital banking ambitions.
Enel, which has been ramping up spending on digital networks across the world, has more than 70 million clients worldwide.
Thanks to its agreement with SIA, Enel X customers will be able to use their smartphones to make mobile payments for services like re-charging electrical cars.
The group is also looking to offer clients the option of paying energy bills and making contactless transactions using the MasterCard circuit.
“This partnership is a further demonstration of the enormous potential offered by digitalization and by the opening of markets,” Enel X Financial Services Chief Executive Giulio Carone said.
SIA, controlled by Italian state lender CDP, this week agreed a merger with bigger rival Nexi NEXII.MI to create a dominant domestic payments group.
Reporting by Stephen Jewkes; Editing by Jan Harvey
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