I am a big fan of CBC Dragons’ Den but passive viewing is not my thing. And when the story is interesting, I like to dig deeper and, over the years, I’ve interviewed Dragons, Dragons’ Den entrepreneurs and conducted followup interviews with the pitching entrepreneurs.
Tonight, after spending sometime (half an hour) of time to research, I was unable to find much external & independent information about UseMyBank (a Season 5, episode 6 pitch) to understand and appreciate their claims of profits on TV and their business.
Anyway, I “naturally” (it is naturally to me) turned to the Canadian Intellectual Property Office to do a trademark database search. (note: the patent search link is on the same CIPO page)
To my surprise, I found that UseMyBank‘s Trademark application (from an online search of “usemybank” or application number 1253705) is currently “opposed” by none other than Bank of Montreal. So I naturally wonder if BMO is doing any business with UseMyBank while BMO is trying to take down its trademark? How about other members of the big 5 banks?
Again, since the business name has been “Used in CANADA since December 12, 2002” (according to the trademark application), and the business has been a success according to the pitch on TV, I am a little surprised for the lack of external & independently verifiable information of it as a business. Any big city Canadian newspapers or magazines available online will help me a lot but I found none.
May be someone can help me here. I am, to say the least, confused about UseMyBank as a business. Can anyone send me links to some external & independent sources of information re UseMyBank?
Note: You can download and read the Trademarks Regulations (current to Feb 2010) here. Of interest are rules 35 – 42.
Mar 4th, 2010, 7:42am Update: Please see followup comments here.
Jan 13th, 2011 Update: Just watched Use My Bank (Brian Crozier & Joseph Iuso) pitched for the second time (season 5, episode 11) on Dragons Den. I can’t say I enjoyed watching their pitch at all because they pitched their business with information (the stacks of business details on paper) only the Dragons got to read and analyze. Seeing Brian & joseph rejecting the $1million for 51% without knowing more about what their business is at now is neither meaningful nor interesting.
I am glad to hear you are a fan of this show. Please feel free to contact me.
Usemybank has been a viable payment solution for quite a few years. I think the first time I used the service was maybe three years ago and I do think the Dragons were wrong with their valuation of the business. Online payment processors is huge in a number of different areas and this is one of the easy ones for Canadian users, as well as European. BMO does support UMB transactions and processes them without any problems, as does RBC, TD and the other major financial institutions.
Heres a link to a few videos of UseMyBank that may help in your mission to legitimize the business including videos from Joseph and Brian talking at the House of Commons and Rogers TV show Sucess Breakthroughs
[editor note: A general bing search in this comment has been replaced by
a link to UseMyBank YouTube,
and a YouTube video under the account.
To help me and my readers understand your business, can you post some links to newspaper or magazine articles that have interviewed or talked about you guys over the years?
Do you have an update of the current Trademark dispute? Some clarification of the CIPO status will be helpful.
Does Amazon.ca accept it? What are some of the large online shops that accept UMB ? I haven’t seen UMB much.
Thanks for links to the videos. I will check them out later.
I am also looking forward to read newspaper or magazine articles that Brian or UMB can send me. After all, I wish to ground my understanding also in something that others have written about UMB over the years.
[…] 4th, 7:42am Update: Please see followup comments here. Possibly related posts: (automatically generated)Kevin O’Leary in G&MDragons’ Den […]
It’s funny that we all know that UMB spends all day using aliases to defend themselves. There are too many better and well known options out there.
Do you have prove that “UMB spends all day using aliases to defend themselves”? Critiques are fine but unsubstantiated critique is not ok.
If you have no proof or further details, I may have to remove the comment.
Shortly after our first show aired the producers asked us to come back and give the Dragons a second chance!
The media and the payment media have been reporting on us since 2003 almost every month. There are links from our site and you can Google “UseMyBank”. We recently presented at the Airline and Travel Payment Summit in San Fran. Airlines can increase direct sales by accepting payments from their consumers with online banking. Airlines are the largest e commerce merchants in the world and payments are a big part of the game!
They are back on The Dragons Den tonight and refused 1,000.000.00 for 51% of the company…Everyone is OUT!
Is it a rerun of the old episode? :)
No it is new and I found on Google that they are under a new name of use my funds what is up with the name changes?
The previous business name has trademark problem discussed in the above article.
UseMyCard.com now sells electronic prepaid products and services. You can purchase 3V Visa vouchers with funds from your online bank and shop anywhere Visa is accepted online!
Thought you said you watched the show? It wasn’t $1million for 51% like you stated above… Rather $1 MILLION for 41%.
Not sure why anyone would need our want to use this service. paypal does the exact same thing. Paypal takes the money straight from your bank as well and uses your credit card as a backup funding source. Paypal is well known and viable, this makes no sense to me.
Key thing with Paypal is they are well known and have protection in the event of fraud, using an unknown service is really sketchy.
Seems like the trademark database says it all. It was abandoned during opposition from BMO just 2 weeks ago.
The difference I see between paypal and the their software if you will is that they claim its done instanly where as paypal takes 5-7 days to post.
hi Al S,
Looks like this is the latest status/result from trademark database search
“Abandoned – Voluntary 2011-10-20 Abandoned during Opposition”
They are now called UseMyFunds – and the reason you can’t find much about their business is because 99% of their revenue comes from online gambling transactions. I’m addicted to gambling and consequently lost all my credit cards, but unfortunately this company allows me to quickly & easily gamble online the second I have money in my bank account.
Thanks for sharing your comments. I am sorry to hear about your personal challenge even I don’t have a way to confirm UseMyBank is now UseMyFunds or not nor the gambling revenue connection.
I don’t know where you live but in Alberta there are help for people with gambling issues. I think there are help available in other provinces too. Here is a link to an Alberta site,
It seems to me the main advantage this service has over PayPal is that as a buyer you don’t have to create an account like you do with PayPal. It sounds like you just log into your online bank, which most people are already set up for. With PayPal all your customers need a PayPal account. That is a deterrent for some buyers.
Vincent, PayPal is internationally trusted. To me, one of the many problems with the UseMyBank service is I, and possibly many other people, don’t and won’t trust them with my bank account info.
Thank you for your interest in our company and your comments. We are a global gateway switch for e commerce merchants to accept payments from their customers with online banking. We started processing payments from Canada in early 2003 and are now in 20 countries.
UseMyServices Inc. is our corporate name. Our merchant service is now called UseMyFunds. We are distributed to online merchants by the largest and most succesful Payment Service Providers in the world today.
Of course there are reasons to use PayPal over this service. Trust is a huge issue. I am merely pointing out that PayPal is not the same thing and that this service does offer something that PayPal does not, which is instant payment without requiring your customers to set up an account and get their account verified and all of that jazz.
In the end every vendor will have to decide for themselves which features are more important. You have to weigh the benefits of both and make a decision.
First, I found this page by googling after seeing the Dragon’s Den as well… This is different from PayPal, sure. But someone (“Player”) mentioned European markets – a false assumption on many cases.
Especially here in the nordic countries (where we value our AAA trust) _all_ the banks already offer abilities to charge an account directly on webpage/store etc, no “middle man” such as this required.
Thanks for sharing your view re how nordic countries’ banks work.
Just curious, I assume you were watching CBC’s Dragons’ Den. Cool to see CBC selling its DD to your area. Which country?
Hi, another reply from a nordic country. iite is right. I also pay frequently online shopping directly from my bank account. You can use your account credentials for logging in for some online public services as well.
In Finland UK, Canadian and US versions of Dragons’ Den are aired. I really enjoy watching them – good entertainment and educative at the same time.
Thanks for your comment Niina. Amazing to hear the UK, Canadian and US versions of Dragons’ Den are aired far away in the nordic country. Finland?
Yep, Finland. In my country we watch also American Idol, Amazing Race and X Factor amongst others. I guess one reason for this is that we do not dub movies or tv series but use subtitles instead = easy and cheap to make those programmes available for small audience or language groups.
In several other countries where dubbing is normal I do not think that they are bothered to dub and show any other than their own reality shows in local language. I dislike dubbing and people obviously do not realize that original shows with subtitles are good for language skills and teach fast reading.
Thanks Niina. I much prefer subtitles than dubbed films or TV shows now. Have adult known actors pretending to speak in the voices little kids just don’t work for me any more. I much prefer to hear the original actors speaking in Japanese, French, Hindi, etc so that I can their tone and emotion.