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Letter from the editor

                              .S. payments industry leaders          Connecting and
                              adeptly balance their competi-
                              tive imperatives with the need
                    U to cooperate for the advance-                            Beyond
                    ment  of  the  industry  as  a  whole.  This
        collegiality, sometimes affectionately dubbed "co-ope-
        tition," has always been evident at industry confer-
        ences dedicated to educating and inspiring payments          Contact us today
        professionals, making these gatherings fertile grounds
        for innovation. As payments enterprises have become
        increasingly global in scope, new opportunities for co-
        opetition have fostered beneficial cross-pollination.       For your personal

        One example of this has been the flow of information
        between the United States and Europe. This issue's
        lead article delves into how Europeans adopted highly          Discovery Call
        secure chip-and-PIN and contactless digital payments
        before the United States began a similar migration.
        Though the infrastructures and political landscapes
        were and remain different in the two regions, Europe's
        early experiences helped U.S. stakeholders avoid pitfalls
        as well as hasten our nation's ability to participate in an
        increasingly interoperable, global commerce ecosystem.

        When it comes to our business partners, cooperation is
        paramount. One industry expert contributing to this
        issue reminds us that the majority of profits for many
        ISOs come from the efforts of their sales partners, so
        it is essential to inspire loyalty through programs that
        truly support those partners. Another contributor
        observed that one thing 2020 made clear is, whether as
        a species or a collection of organizations, we work best
        when we collaborate, and points of inflection such as    Spotlight Innovator Pages, Video Marketing,
        a new year can catalyze our fortitude to re-engage, re-
        imagine and push forward. Another expert discussed        Resource Guides, Target Email Campaigns.
        recent research on the unbanked population, which
        reached an all-time low in 2019, but whether this decline
        continued in 2020 is as yet unknown.                          Amplify your message across

        Another aspect of cooperating to advance the industry         channels. Expand your reach
        as a whole is news of the Electronic Transactions
        Association's Young Payments Professionals Scholars         with pioneering, one-of-a-kind,
        program, now in its fifth year, which we've highlighted        multimedia promotions and
        in News Briefs. Other spotlighted stories include Visa's
        scuttling of plans to acquire the fintech Plaid, an        campaigns. Partner with us today.
        interview with Wnet's first CEO, predictions that the
        surge in digital shopping will outlast the COVID-19
        pandemic, and Mastercard and Visa's initiatives to
        move contactless payments to the cloud.                                 Rick Aston

        Also within these pages are updates on a free POS                 Media Partnership Specialist
        offering for SMBs, progress on the FedNow pilot    
        program, leadership scholarships, a new video series
        and podcast, as well as recent industry research,                     707-284-1693
        partnerships, acquisitions, appointments and product
        profiles. Please take a moment to send your feedback to, and keep sending your latest
        news to
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