The Green Sheet Online Edition
August 08, 2016 • Issue 16:08:01
- Boston-based startup 2020 On-Site Optometry built state-of-the art mobile vision centers to provide on-site eye exams, eyeglasses and contacts to businesses and schools as a convenience to time-strapped employees and students. According to the company, on-site eye exams are becoming a new standard in corporate wellness.
- Installing a modern sound system can be an expensive proposition. To eliminate guesswork from the purchase decision, smart speaker system developer Sonos Inc. recently opened a flagshipo store in New York. Shoppers can step inside one of seven mini soundproof booths designed to mimic the soundscape of an actual living room. To complete the experience, each booth is fully appointed with home furnishings.
- Fans of Whole Foods Market have long enjoyed a perk that other supermarket chains are realizing can increase time in store, which can lead to more sales. About 350 Whole Foods stores allow customers to carry beverages purchased at in-store bars and beer gardens while they shop. Shoppers at participating Whole Foods stores are also able to view televised sports and mingle with friends in the on-site bars.
BBB launches new EU program
Following the July 2016 launch of the EU-US Privacy Shield Framework, which replaced the US-EU Safe Harbor Framework, the Council of Better Business Bureaus launched the BBB EU Privacy Shield program. The BBB's program provides compliance assistance and independent privacy dispute resolution services for U.S. companies doing business in Europe that must meet new framework standards. Jointly launched by the U.S. Department of Commerce and the European Commission, the new framework includes enhanced consumer privacy protections for EU individuals; promotes greater transparency around data collection, use, and sharing; and helps U.S. companies demonstrate that their privacy practices meet EU data protection requirements.
D3 Banking receives service award
D3 Banking received the Depth of Service award in Celent LLC's report, Ubiquitous Digital for Channel Banking: Global Digital Platforms Solutions Vendors, Digital Specialist Edition, 2016. The report examined the current market for digital channel solutions and the state of the industry. The Depth of Service award honored D3 for its investment of resources in research and development, its commitment to customer service and innovation, and the company's exceptional client engagement.
EPC supports Durbin appeal
The Electronic Payments Coalition – representing more than 12,000 credit unions and community banks, trade associations, payment card networks and banks – submitted comments supporting the repeal of the Durbin Amendment to the 2010 Dodd Frank Act. The repeal is included in the proposed Financial CHOICE Act. The EPC stated that the Durbin Amendment failed to deliver on its key promise, which was savings for consumers, and called the repeal an important step toward protecting an innovative and dynamic electronic payments system.
Fed updates ACH risk policy
The Federal Reserve Board adopted changes to part II of the Federal Reserve Policy on Payment System Risk (PSR) to conform with enhancements to the Reserve Banks' same-day automated clearing house (ACH) service. The PSR policy establishes the procedures, referred to as posting rules, for the settlement of credits and debits to institutions' Federal Reserve accounts for different payment types in order to enhance the efficiency of the ACH network and the broader U.S. payment system.
International Bancard to relocate
International Bancard Corp. plans to relocate its headquarters to downtown Detroit. International Bancard has acquired naming rights to the company's new building, which is in Detroit's Madison Block, the city's burgeoning technology district. "Locating in the heart of Detroit's thriving technology corridor will allow us to showcase our capabilities to local and national businesses and rapidly accelerate the growth of our business," said David Iafrate, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of International Bancard.
Mastercard comments on UK appeal
After losing its appeal to the UK Competition Appeal Tribunal in the Sainsbury's Supermarkets case, Mastercard expressed disappointment over the decision, which means Mastercard must now pay £68.6 million (about $90 milllion) to the supermarket chain. However, the card company also noted the court's conclusion that Sainsbury's did not pass through interchange costs to consumers in the form of higher prices. Mastercard also indicated it remains committed to its retail partners and will continue to focus on helping to grow their businesses and encourage the adoption of convenient, safe and secure payments.
MWAA honors industry consultant
Consultant Deana Rich was "completely shocked and very humbled" upon learning she had received the 2016 Industry Achievement Award at the 14th Annual Midwest Acquirers Association Conference held July 26 to 28 in Cleveland, Ohio. "This is great for me personally and for all of us on the non-sales side of things," said Rich, who has 25 years of payments industry experience and launched Deana Rich Consulting in 2004.
NAC counters ATMIA claim
As reported in The Green Sheet's Industry Update on July 11, 2016, the National ATM Council Inc. released the U.S. Retail ATM Skimming Survey, reporting 93 percent of companies operating ATMs in U.S. retail locations have never experienced a credit card skimming incident.
Subsequently, ATMIA CEO Mike Lee released a statement questioning NAC's survey, and NAC issued a rebuttal letter in response. In the NAC rebuttal, the organization raised concerns over the basis behind Lee's public challenge, along with detrimental impacts his statement may have on public sentiments.
The NAC letter also singled out Lee's reference to credit and debit card usage indicating such detail was never covered by the survey. Furthermore, the NAC challenged Lee's claim that the retailer survey respondents were unaware of skimming activity at their ATMs, suggesting Lee could have mistakenly confused high bank-ATM skimming with the lower retail-ATM statistics reported.
NFC Forum reduces fees for startups
The NFC Forum instituted a reduced membership fee for startups. The Startup Implementer Membership fee is exclusively for near field communication (NFC)-focused startup companies. It allows young and developing companies to participate in the NFC Forum's technical, marketing, and educational efforts, as well as grants them free access to NFC Forum technical specifications and encourages participation in its Certification Program.
Payment Card Technologies raises capital
Digital banking and payment company Payment Card Technologies released information on a management buyout supported by a $13.3 million (€12 million) investment from a European private equity firm. The transaction provides the company with significant growth development capital and a strong debt-free balance sheet for further expansion both in Europe and internationally, PCT stated.
Vantiv commences developer network
Vantiv Inc. launched Vantiv O.N.E. (One Network Experience) to provide software developers a best-in-class destination for integrating payments into their applications for mobile, in-store and online processing. Vantiv O.N.E. enables software developers to get applications to market faster, make compliance and security easier, and help fuel innovation in the increasingly complex market for omnichannel commerce solutions, Vantiv said.
Visa expands to Palo Alto
Visa Inc. will open a new office in Silicon Valley as part of its continued efforts to accelerate digital commerce globally. The new 62,000-square-foot facility, located in Palo Alto, Calif., will provide office and collaboration spaces for approximately 300 Visa employees focused on technology research, business intelligence, data security and merchant solutions. The Palo Alto office is one of several new facilities Visa has opened in the last year.
ACI, Aite report on card fraud
Thirty percent of consumers globally have experienced card fraud in the past five years, according to new global benchmark data from ACI Worldwide and Aite Group LLC. Researchers studied more than 6,000 consumers across 20 countries and found card fraud rates have risen worldwide since ACI's last study in 2014. Key findings indicate risky behaviors, such as leaving smartphones unlocked when not in use, have a direct correlation to fraud, and the overall risk for fraud is rising due to the global increase in smartphone and tablet usage.
BCC Research releases paper on wallets
According to a report released by BCC Research LLC, rising awareness of mobile wallets and their applications, higher sales of smartphones, and increasing security are among key market drivers. Mobile Wallet and Payment Technologies: Global Markets (IFT070B) examines the mobile wallet industry's supporting equipment and technologies, as well as related legislation and regulations. Analysis of global market drivers and trends and projections through 2020 also are provided.
ISACA establishes mobile security guidelines
Advancements in mobile payment security technology are curbing risks and improving consumer trust beyond levels traditionally associated with plastic payment cards, according to new research the ISACA, a global association previously known as the Information Systems Audit and Control Association. The complimentary guide, Is Mobile the Winner in Payment Security?, outlines several distinct advantages of mobile payments. Tokenization, device-specific cryptograms and two-factor authentication are described as improvements that can increase the appeal of mobile payments among both consumers and vendors.
Mercator reports on EMV
Mercator Advisory Group's newest research report, EMV in 2016: Breaking Through the Bottleneck, provides an updated outlook on the U.S. EMV (Europay, MasterCard and Visa) migration, including estimates for chip card issuance and distribution and activation of chip-accepting POS terminals. According to the report, progress in the issuance of chip cards is occurring, but continued challenges remain in certifying and activating dormant POS terminals to accept EMV transactions.
Temkin Group issues report on mobile behavior
Temkin Group released a research report entitled Five C's of Mobile VoC Disruption. The report shows how organizations need to adapt to accommodate a significant shift caused by the growth of mobile devices. "Deploying mobile-friendly customer surveys is a good start, but it's not nearly enough to keep up with the mobile disruption," stated Jen Rodstrom, Customer Experience Transformist of Temkin and primary report author. For best results, mobile engagements need to be condensed, comprehensive, current, conversational and contextual.
3dcart, Bablic team up
3dcart formed a new partnership with Bablic, a website localization solution. Designed to increase traffic, user-engagement and sales, Bablic allows merchants to quickly and easily add languages to their 3dcart stores with just one line of code, the companies stated. "Through a cost-effective translation service such as Bablic, 3dcart's merchants have a unique opportunity to gain a foothold in global markets they'd otherwise find impenetrable," said 3dcart's CEO Gonzalo Gil.
ABC aligns with Textmunication
Health and fitness software and payment processing provider ABC Financial Services established a vendor relationship with Textmunication. Textmunication is now ABC's exclusive short message service (SMS) partner, delivering auto SMS communication for the following areas: automated SMS communication, lead generation, health tip alerts, new member alerts, cancellation alerts, birthday alerts, reminders for renewals, personal training reminders and prospect follow ups.
ClickSWITCH, MeridianLink partner
ClickSWITCH teamed with MeridianLink, developer of a multichannel account opening and loan origination platform. With the merged technologies, online account opening and account switching will allow for seamless new account acquisition, and increase the number of active accounts at financial institutions, according to the companies. New account holders can open MeridianLink accounts online, which will be integrated with ClickSWITCH, reportedly enabling them to switch from their old financial institution hassle-free.
D3 Banking, SLK Group form alliance
D3 Banking formed a partnership with the SLK Group. The alliance will focus on assisting North American financial institutions seeking to deploy strategic digital banking platforms. The companies stated the relationship with D3 Banking allows SLK to meet its goal of seeking innovative, best-of-breed products that support client digital banking strategies and initiatives. "The reputation of SLK within the banking and financial services industry speaks volumes about their value to us as a partner," said Mark Vipond, CEO of D3 Banking.
First Data teams with Bypass
First Data Corp. and Bypass Mobile are working jointly to deliver a modern, comprehensive payment solution for sports arenas and concert venues. This collaboration blends First Data's Clover family of POS devices and business management tools with Bypass's cloud-based software and back-office management tools. The two companies noted that they have already collaborated to support major sporting events and concerts across the country.
MoneyOnMobile, Kalighat unite
The Calpian Inc. subsidiary MoneyOnMobile entered into an agreement with Kalighat Society for Development Facilitation to help over 75,000 low-income women in the Kolkata area become financially independent. "We are very proud and excited to provide sustainable income-producing opportunities for these women, supporting them in becoming more self-sufficient while gaining confidence in formal financial services," said Harold Montgomery, Calpian CEO.
Shift4, Springer-Miller, Ingenico work together
Payment gateway provider Shift4 Corp. and Springer-Miller Systems worked together to install EMV-ready, smart payment terminals from Ingenico Group at Beaver Run Resort and Conference Center, a full-service luxury resort and conference center in Breckenridge, Colo. Beaver Run is now able to process EMV and NFC contactless transactions across its hotel property.
Singular Payments, PerfectByte team up
Singular Payments LLC launched a merchant services offering called the Financial Freedom Program for healthcare, dental and other merchants in partnership with PerfectByte Practice Management Software. Singular Payments stated the pairing of its savings-guaranteed, flat-rate credit card processing service with PerfectByte's full-featured practice management software is an exciting offering for medical industry and related businesses nationwide.
Yardi, BluePay collaborate
A collaboration between Yardi Systems Inc. and integrated payment processing solutions provider BluePay Processing LLC will allow rental property managers in Canada to receive electronic rent payments. Under the partnership, BluePay will work with Yardi Voyager and RENTCafé to process credit and debit card payments made by commercial property tenants, as well as by residents of multifamily and condominium units. BluePay said it will process payments and post deposits to property managers' bank accounts invisibly, and landlords will receive the funds within hours.
Net Element acquires PayStar, Nexcharge
Net Element Inc. entered a binding letter of intent to acquire a majority interest in PayStar Inc., a remittance and e-wallet platform for emerging markets, and Nexcharge Inc., a proprietary payment processing, fraud management and merchant management platform. It is expected that Net Element, together with PayStar and Nexcharge, will create one or more entities into which PayStar and Nexcharge will contribute all their assets, with Net Element owning a 51 percent interest in the newly created entities.
Seamless purchases MeaWallet
Swedish mobile payment specialist Seamless Distribution AB acquired Norwegian third-party mobile wallet provider MeaWallet AS. According to Seamless, the purchase equates to about $5.03 million and payment is made through an issue in kind of 4,574,328 new shares in Seamless. "Through the acquisition, Seamless controls important technology in the rapidly growing field of contactless payments," the company added.
Verizon now owns Yahoo
Verizon Communications Inc. took steps to purchase the core Internet business of Yahoo Inc. for $4.83 billion in cash. The deal unites two early Internet icons, AOL and Yahoo, under the umbrella of one of the nation's largest telecommunications companies. Though its involvement in softcard (formerly Isis) didn't bring Verizon success in the mobile wallet arena, this acquisition adds Yahoo's consumer services – search, news, finance, sports, video, email and the Tumblr social network – to a portfolio that includes AOL and The Huffington Post.
Bornstein reunites with TouchSuite
With more than 25 years of industry experience under his belt, Ira Bornstein has reunited with the TouchSuite team to assume the position of Chief Operating Officer, a role he previously held from 2008 to 2012. Bornstein will play an integral role in the company's enhancement of operational workflows, risk mitigation, new product development and improving overall profitability.
Giorgio appointed by ICBA
ICBA Bancard, the payments-services subsidiary of the Independent Community Bankers of America, named Chrystina Giorgio as its President and CEO. She was appointed by unanimous decision of ICBA Bancard's board of directors and succeeds Linda Echard, who retired after 30 years as President and CEO. Giorgio brings more than 25 years of payment systems experience, including more than 19 years at Sandy Spring Bank in Maryland, most recently as Senior Vice President, Deposit Operations and Digital Delivery.
Hunnicutt joins Spindle
Spindle Inc. appointed payments industry veteran John Hunnicutt as its Chief Financial Officer. Hunnicutt has more than 18 years' experience in corporate finance, treasury management and accounting. Before joining Spindle, Hunnicutt served as Executive Vice President of edo Interactive, a pioneer in the card-linked offers industry.
Clearent appoints Knibb
Clearent LLC welcomed Chris Knibb as its new Chief Financial Officer. Knibb joins Clearent from Express Scripts Holding Co., a Fortune 22 pharmacy benefit management company, where he was Vice President of Financial Planning Analysis. With more than 20 years of financial leadership experience, ranging from a technology startup to a $100 billion revenue organization, Knibb is positioned to make an immediate impact at Clearent, the company said.
Thusu signs on with YapStone
YapStone Inc. hired Arjun Thusu as Chief Security Officer. YapStone stated that most recently, Thusu was the Chief Security Officer for Worldpay (Americas), where he built a world-class security team from the ground up, managed a multimillion dollar budget, and oversaw all aspects of the company's information security. Prior to Worldpay, he held management positions at The Home Depot Inc., Internap and Dell SecureWorks.
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