Snapchat could soon offer money transfers and e-commerce as it looks to monetise

Saqib Shah
July 17, 2014

Two trademarks recently filed by the ephemeral messaging app Snapchat point the way to its planned monetisation, in the wake of its burgeoning popularity.

The trademarks spotted by TechCrunch and filed on 11 July by an attorney at Cooley, Snapchat’s law firm of choice, indicate its interest in peer-to-peer payments, money transfers or online payments.

The company has declined to comment. However, it seems that Snapchat could soon make your money disappear along with your messages.

The two trademarks specifically state:

  • “Computer application software for processing electronic payments to and from others that may be downloaded from a global computer network” ‘ Trademark Serial #  86335306
  • “Electronic transfer of money for others; providing electronic processing of electronic funds transfer, ACH, credit card, debit card, electronic check and electronic, mobile and online payments” –  Trademark Serial #  86335307

Recent high-profile recruitment by Snapchat also indicates that it is serious about monetisation. It hired Instagram’s former Head of Business, Emily White, as COO at the end of last year. Last month it also snagged Facebook’s Global Director of its Preferred Marketing Developer programme, Mike Randall, as its VP of Business and Marketing Partnerships.


If it does go into payments, it is thought that the app could allow users to send cash back and forth to friends or buy things online with a registered credit card.

Additionally, it could do what Asian messaging services like Line and Kakao Talk and charge for stickers. Or charge for filters – like the recent geo-filters it released in LA and NYC – in the vein of Adobe Photoshop Express.

In fact, Snapchat has already made small strides in to the e-commerce. It provides links for users to buy from iTunes the songs it features in its announcements of new features, like Strange Talk’s ‘Young Hearts or Goldroom’s ‘Embrace’.


About the Author

Saqib Shah

Tech/gaming journalist for What Mobile magazine and website. Interests include film, digital media and foreign affairs.

Share this article