Jason Oxman, Chief Executive Officer of the Electronic Transactions Association, said the addition of the four major mobile network operators (MNOs) to the ETA's member ranks and an increased focus on the emerging mobile payments industry will not alter the association's goal to help ISOs and other members grow their businesses.
The MNOs - AT&T Inc., Sprint Nextel Corp., T-Mobile USA Inc. and Verizon Wireless - are also joining the ETA's new Mobile Payments Committee, Oxman reported. These are the same companies partnering in Isis, the mobile wallet company, which is already an ETA member and member of the special committee.
The Mobile Payments Committee is a task force convened to foster innovation and create interoperability among the mobile payments players; to share best practices that ensure innovative and effective mobile payments solutions are available; and to educate legislators, regulators, consumers and merchants on mobile payments' efficiency, reliability and security, Oxman said.
Google Inc. and PayPal Inc. also are joining the committee, along with representatives from the association's more than 500 credit card companies, processors, developers, financial institutions and device manufacturers.
The ETA's board directed Oxman to form the committee now, while it is still early enough in the evolution of mobile payments technology to bring the market segment participants together to begin the process of addressing industry-wide issues, the CEO said.
"We are asking our members to take off their company hat and to put on an industry hat to address policy, technical and interoperability issues that will help the segment's success," Oxman stated.
The trade association's decision to open its doors to new payment companies does not mean the ETA is forgetting its mission to help the smaller member companies offering electronic transaction processing products and services.
"As Eddie Myers, the President of our board of directors, likes to say, 'We are enlarging our tent,'" Oxman said. "The next step in the ETA is this effort to become the hub of activity in mobile payments. The committee is an extension of a wise decision by the ETA board of directors to engage in mobile payment to create new business opportunities and create innovation."
Oxman noted, "The most optimistic projections are that there will be $107 billion in mobile payments in 2012, out of $3.6 trillion in transactions in the United States. Mobile payment is still a drop in the bucket. Our goal is to grow our members' business and foster more business opportunities for ISOs, processors and acquirers. We want to help grow the whole pie for every participant in the industry."
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