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Chikka Asia, Inc. is a wireless application service provider, better known for creating the world’s first instant messenger to fully integrate mobile features via SMS, the “Chikka Messenger.” The Chikka Messenger has 38 million registered users, including mobile subscribers from network operators worldwide. It is interoperable with Google Talk.[1]

Pronounced as it is spelled, Chikka \’CHI-ka\ or chika is a Filipino colloquial term for ‘small talk.’ As a verb, it translates to mingling easily, or doing anything with ease; or in a clever manner. According to the company, ‘small talk’ in fact refers to the nature of many text and chat messages exchanged throughout online and mobile communities worldwide.

Headquartered in Manila, Philippines, Chikka Asia powers services for mobile instant messaging and email accessible via SMS, mobile payment systems utilizing call credits, Free-Reply SMS for prepaid mobile subscribers in need of “top-up,” mobile-enabled auctions and matchmaking, as well as text, voice and visual mobile content.

The company’s services are currently available to over 45 mobile carriers in fourteen countries including the US, UK, Italy, Spain, India, Japan, Indonesia, Philippines and Hong Kong.



Chikka Asia, Inc. pioneered the creation of the Chikka Text Messenger (CTM) in 1999. CTM was the pilot service of the company, which combines the features of instant messaging and SMS technology.

Owners of the company were a group of young entrepreneurs trying to devise a customer service application that would connect Internet-to-mobile communities. This application was originally intended for a small e-commerce business that catered to an overseas community for the delivery of gifts to their home country, in this case, the Philippines.

It was designed to withstand SMS volume in a country sending 30 million messages daily, which made it “Text Capital of the World” in 2000.

Chikka was founded as a “dotcom” during the tail-end of the dotcom boom in 2000. A year later, the Chikka Messenger was launched. Chikka beat world players in creating an effective mobile instant messaging application, one that would marry SMS. Chikka’s solution and subsequent hold on the market was such that prevented many more global players from gaining ground in the “SMS Capital.”

The Chikka Text Messenger (CTM) was capable of translating instant messaging functionalities such as presence detection (knowing which users are online), into SMS-enabled mobile phones. Effective anti-spam and privacy features were also built-in to assure primary customers in the network operators.

Users log-on to Chikka using their mobile phone number and enjoy free instant messaging from a PC and continue to receive messages on their mobiles even when offline.

Such features are the subject of patent filings worldwide.

By the third quarter of 2002, Chikka Asia, Inc. had already launched multiple services that allowed it to seize market leadership in the local Value Added Service (VAS) SMS market in the Philippines, especially on various corporate promo applications and SMS-based games.

Chikka Messenger

Chikka Messenger is the world’s first instant messenger Desktop client to support communication with mobile phones via SMS, allowing users send free SMS messages to buddies. Users who register their mobile numbers can also receive messages on their phones whenever offline. Other features include the following:

Chikka Messenger for the Web

Chikka Messenger for the Web is a web application of the Chikka Messenger client currently in Beta release. This web-based version of the Chikka Messenger is interoperable with Google Talk, Yahoo! Messenger, MSN Messenger, AOL Messenger and ICQ.


As Chikka introduced the Chikka Text Messenger in 2001, its affiliates launched other pioneering services based on shared patents, technologies and resources. Patented technologies have allowed these affiliated entities to create mobile versions of popular Internet models, specifically online auctions and dating.

Bidshot Wireless Services is an online auction site that has also patented mobile-enabled auctions with actionable SMS alerts, wireless item message boards and location-based classifieds.

In 2002, Chikka acquired 100% of Bidshot Wireless Services Inc.

In the same year, patented technologies allowed Bidshot to successively launch interactive television, mobile-enabled games and polls, SMS marketing promos and made an entry into mobile content. Bidshot today has over 100,000 registered users.

Crushcow is a mobile-enabled personal ads and matchmaking site which allows users to create profiles, get alerted on their matches and chat anonymously via mobile phone.

The company has also become a provider of love-, friendship-, and romance-oriented mobile content.

Chikka International

In 2003, Chikka entered into franchising agreements with partners in Thailand and in Indonesia that brought its services to major network operators in those countries. It went on to break records for daily VAS SMS volume generated by existing providers, quickly establishing Chikka as a major “content provider” in these markets.

Subsequently, Chikka also signed up with carriers in Singapore, Hong Kong and Japan for messaging and celebrity-texting services catering to overseas Filipino communities.

In 2005, the Chikka Messenger connected to major US carriers Cingular Wireless, Verizon Wireless, and AT&T Wireless, the top three mobile network operators in the United States. Together with Sprint, Alltel and other carriers today, Chikka gained connectivity to 100% of US mobile subscribers.

In 2005, a partnership with Times Internet Ltd. (TIL), the new media arm of India’s illustrious media conglomerate BCCL, launched the Chikka Messenger to all major operators, to cover 90% of mobile subscribers in India.[2]

To provide extensive support to more international partners, Chikka obtained triple ISO certifications for Quality Management, Security and IT Project Management in 2005. Chikka’s global headquarters in Manila is the first Philippine-based company to obtain the triple certifications ISO 9001, BS 7799, and BS15000.

In February 2006, the company acquired a CMMI Maturity Level 5, the highest level of certification for processes of I.T. organizations.[3] A CMMI Maturity Level 5 certification puts Chikka along the ranks of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), Intel Corporation, and Nokia; all of whom benchmark their processes with CMMI’s Maturity Level 5.[4]

The first quarter of 2007 saw the launch of Chikka Messenger in the UK for all major mobile carriers, making the service available to over 70 million mobile subscribers.[5]

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