New e-wallet has been so widely discussed pre-launch that its debut is almost an anticlimax
London-based Seed Capital Ltd has launched its much discussed new e-wallet service YouTeller in the UK, but surprisingly is showing some reservations about whether its servers can handle the traffic!
Following various publicity attempts on Internet message boards and YouTube (see previous InfoPowa reports) the new venture has already been extensively discussed by online gamblers and found wanting in the transparency department, which may now be addressed following the launch.
In a press release, parent firm Seed Capital Limited commented that new customers will be able to register a YouTeller.com account only at a member's invitation.
"Our servers could not handle the traffic if we open our doors for a public sign up. But it is our first priority to provide our customers with a stable service and a reliable support", says Florian Schweitzer, spokesman of the London-based technology company, adding: "YouTeller.com follows the GMAIL model. It will be a community-based payment processor".
During March, YouTeller.com will invite 1 000 customers, who have already signed up during the pre-registering period. Public account registration is "not planned within the next few months" he said.
Schweitzer believes that their "Euro 150 per account and transaction limit" will help them to be "...not interesting for terrorists or other criminals".
"Our target audience is people who play community-orientated online games like poker, chess or role-playing games. People who need instant and worldwide payment processing," said Schweitzer.
The network-orientated registration process has a second advantage: The security system can track attempted money laundering attempts easily. Schweitzer emphasizes that they will cooperate with national and international institutions in cases of money laundering without prejudicing their customers' privacy.
"We will not give anybody access to our customer's personal information except when a court or government regulators require us to disclose information about them. In this case we will disclose only the information which is required", declared Schweitzer.
Online Gambling: Is Youteller the Real Deal for a Bookmaker these Days?
Written by Thomas Jensen
Saturday, 24 February 2007
I just got back from a recent trip to crime ridden Costa Rica where I learned that one of the largest, most respected and savvy online gambling companies in the country will be abandoning the US market sometime very soon. All US account holders will be transferred to a brand new URL that will be easy to remember and powered by the flagship brand. The flagship brand will keep all international accounts as it expands into Europe & Asia. I have already test driven the website and it is going to be a real big hit with players.
In other news, the biggest topic on the minds of industry executives that I spoke with was processing. One of the e-money products rumored to be the savior of the industry is called Youteller.
Since the United States exit of NETeller, Citadel Commerce and several other e-wallets, online gambling companies have been scrambling to find additional payment solutions to fill the void. Even in the scramble, gambling operators and players must be cautious and on the look out for scams and con artists.
Point-Spreads.com wants to know: Is Youteller the real deal or a perfectly timed scam made to capitalize on the industryís desperation?
Only time will tell, but here is what we have found out so far:
1.) When was the URL created?
The Whois information for Youteller.com states the URL was created on November 17th, 2006. Approximately one month after President George W. Bush signed the SAFE Port Act into law. The Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) makes it illegal for financial institutions to knowingly process transactions to and from online gambling companies. The law does not criminalize individual citizens, nor does it make online gambling illegal in states where it already was not. What UIGEA attempts to do is cut off funds flowing out of the United States.
2.) What merchants are currently registered to use Youteller?
So far, we have not spoken to one operator that has been able to receive a returned email from the company. I spoke to several operators that stated they have been waiting for someone to return email inquiries for merchant applications for over 5 days. From an operator's perspective, this does not constitute the type of response time you would want from someone holding millions of your dollars. If they have enough time to make a video for Youtube, they have enough time to respond to email inquires for merchant accounts.
3.) Who is behind Youteller?
Rumor has it that the people behind NETeller are the ones that are starting Youteller however, this rumor has not been confirmed. The website states that Youteller is a trademark of Seed Capital Ltd and goes on to say "We operate as a Small E-Money Issuer certified by the British Financial Services Authority".
The FSA is an independent body that regulates the financial services industry in the UK. Point-Spreads.com has confirmed that Seed Capital Ltd is listed on the FSA website as a small e-money issuer ($10 million Euro or less).
The contact for the FSA certification at Youteller is Johannes Knierzinger, a co-founder of Youteller, though his name does not appear as a director in the Companies House registration. Florian Schweitzer, an Austrian national is the only director named. Both men are listed on the whois information for Youteller.com as well.
A Johannes Knierzinger and one Florian Schweitzer, both in their mid-twenties were students in Vienna and belonged to a liberal group called LSF (Liberal Student Forum) in 2005. LSF executive committee members were Nina Krassnitzer, Philipp Wissgott, Johannes Knierzinger and Florian Schweitzer, with Knierzinger described as a journalism and communication under-graduate.
4.) What is Youteller's FSA Register Number?
Even thought it did not help US customers waiting for funds to be returned, NETeller's FSA Register Number is clearly listed on their website. Here is it is: (FSA Register Number: 229737; UK VAT GB 002 4257 28).
Youteller does not list the actual number on their website. Instead they list a misleading registration number:
"Registered in England & Wales - No. 05961235"
5.) What are Johannes Kniezinger and Florian Schweitzer's qualifications to run a multi-billion dollar e-wallet?
This information has not been disclosed by Johannes Kniezinger or Florian Schweitzer. Point-Spreads.com would recommend every player hold off on providing any personal banking data to the company via the Youteller.com website until more information is known. By the way, I sent Youteller a link to this story so we will keep you posted how long it takes them to respond to it.
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