The Green Sheet Online Edition
September 26, 2016 • Issue 16:09:02
- China's online commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., through its Ant Financial Services Group unit, is working to develop technology that will enable shoppers to stroll through virtual online malls and indicate readiness to purchase using basic physical gestures, such as the nod of a head. According to the company, the virtual reality-driven payment technology will soon deliver a completely immersive shopping experience for tech-savvy consumers.
- After nearly a decade in development, ModiFace Inc. launched a patented scanning technology that converts photos and videos into live 3D recordings, so shoppers can virtually explore whether cosmetics from magazines, TV and other media work well for their complexion. The visualization technology can apparently detect the actual texture and style of the makeup from multimedia and analyze it for rendering on a person's face based on images submitted.
- Driverless cars could hit the streets as early as 2020. Wear and tear on fleets of autonomous vehicles that deliver products and riders around the clock for Uber and other delivery companies is expected to increase demand for auto repair and aftermarket products and services. To keep pace, such businesses will require trained technicians to deliver high-tech maintenance along with replacement of parts such as tires, brake pads, steering and other vehicle components.
Behalf ups investment financing
Commercial payment platform Behalf raised an additional $27 million in Series C financing. New investor Viola Growth led the round and was joined by previous investors Sequoia Capital, Spark Capital, MissionOG, and Vintage Investment Partners. Behalf plans to use the funding to rapidly scale growth in sales, business development and marketing; support continued product innovation; and bolster its position as a service leader in small business purchase financing.
Boku secures additional venture funding
Boku secured $13.75 million in venture funding to expand its carrier billing connections globally, bringing the total raised to $93 million. "Early on we saw an opportunity with Boku to provide a digital payment solution for the hundreds of millions of people who don't have access to bank cards or credit cards," said David Weiden, Partner at Khosla Ventures, a Boku investor. "Carrier billing has now moved beyond this to become the preferred alternative payment method for many of the world's largest merchants."
CardinalCommerce grows patent group
CardinalCommerce expanded its global patent portfolio with the addition of new patents in the United States and Japan. Cardinal's technology, along with the new patents, are for innovations designed to improve authorization rates (including cross-border transactions), eliminate fraud and ensure consumers can buy without unnecessary friction in the checkout process, the company said. Cardinal has a portfolio of more than 63 U.S. and foreign patents.
CFPB fines Wells Fargo
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau fined Wells Fargo Bank N.A. $100 million for what it described as the widespread illegal practice of secretly opening unauthorized deposit and credit card accounts. Spurred by sales targets and compensation incentives, employees allegedly covertly opened as many as two million accounts and funded them by transferring monies from consumers' authorized accounts without their consent, and fees and other charges were assessed.
According to the CFPB, Wells Fargo will pay full restitution to all victims, a $100 million fine to the CFPB's Civil Penalty Fund, $35 million to the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, and another $50 million to the City and County of Los Angeles.
IdentityMind launches risk scoring tool
IdentityMind Global unveiled Identity Graph Intelligence, a key extension of IdentityMind's Trusted Digital Identities application programming interface (API), which helps customers identify and reduce risk through risk scoring and identity complexity analysis. Identity Graph Intelligence uncovers complex risk and money laundering scenarios in real time by applying big data analysis to the correlation of a digital entity's identity attributes, transactions and behaviors.
Grocers unite to defend Durbin Amendment
More than 400 merchants from across the nation sent a letter urging Congress to protect debit card swipe fee reform, also known as the Durbin Amendment to the 2010 Dodd-Frank Act. Nearly half of the signatories were independent grocers who joined this effort to voice concern over the potential negative impacts on their businesses should a repeal of the Durbin Amendment gain passage under the proposed Financial CHOICE Act.
Hyperwallet speeds up API
Hyperwallet recently showcased new developer-friendly feature updates it incorporated into its API. The refreshed technology will provide developers with improved integration methods and easy, one-click 'Go Live' access. New implementation methods make it easy for marketplace and platform developers to test Hyperwallet's payout functionality and the new 'Go Live' functionality expedites real-world implementation of the payout solution.
Jack Henry honored by Aite Group
Jack Henry & Associates Inc. was recognized by Aite Group LLC in the firm's July 2016 report, Leading U.S. Core Banking Vendors: Entering the Era of Plug-and-Play Banking. The report focused specifically on the six core banking vendors that maintain a combined 75 percent of the U.S. market. Aite Group honored Jack Henry with a "Leader of the Pack Award" as well as an "Alliance and Most Open Architecture Award" for its Symitar Episys platform.
MOVO scores seed funding
MOVO, a mobile payments startup delivering peer-to-peer payments and on-demand mobile banking solutions, closed a $1.8 million Preferred Series Seed financing round led by the second largest angel network in the United States, Tech Coast Angels. With this round of capital, MOVO plans to launch its P2P2P (Peer-to-Peer-to-Purchase) mobile app during the fourth quarter of this year.
Nobel House, Hutton Hotel card data compromised
Noble House Hotels & Resorts was recently notified by the U.S. Secret Service about possible fraudulent activity on the payment card system at one of its properties, Ocean Key Resort & Spa. An investigation revealed malware may have been installed on POS systems that potentially affected cards swiped at several of its properties. Likewise, Hutton Hotel was notified of, and subsequently confirmed, a similar security incident. Both companies have alerted potentially affected customers and taken steps to implement enhanced security measures.
NSFOCUS advises hybrid security approach
NSFOCUS, a global network and application security provider, recommends that enterprises move toward an intelligent hybrid security model which entails automating threat intelligence, eliminating silos, identifying security blind spots, examining networks and implementing an intelligence-enabled enterprise security platform. "It is no longer enough to implement disparate security solutions and hope that they will work together," said Allan Thompson, Chief Operating Officer at NSFOCUS.
AmEx joins D&B in middle market study
According to the latest Middle Market Power Index: A Detailed Look at Top Industries from American Express and Dun & Bradstreet, the growth of U.S. middle market firms (companies between $10 million and $1 billion in revenues) is outpacing the national average, with an 87 percent increase in the number of firms, a 103 percent surge in employment and a 100 percent rise in revenue since 2011. The study named business services, manufacturing and wholesale trade, the highest growth industries and the industries with the largest number of new jobs added.
BRG benchmarks cybersecurity preparedness
Berkeley Research Group LLC released its Cybersecurity Preparedness Benchmarking Study, detailing findings about cybersecurity practices from a survey of leading global organizations. The study focused on six primary topics: leadership, information governance, risk management, essential protection, incident response and security culture. BRG teamed with the London-based Institute of Operational Risk to conduct the survey over the first two quarters of 2016.
Doctom studies online shopper loyalty
According to a recent study by Dotcom Distribution, 87 percent of online shoppers identified shipping speed as a key factor in the decision to shop with an ecommerce brand again. The study, How Fast Delivery and Quality Packaging Drives Customer Loyalty, underscores the importance of shipping speed and package aesthetics in the customer experience. The study found that 67 percent of online shoppers would pay more money to get same-day delivery, if they needed the package by a deadline, such as an anniversary.
Fiserv delves into mobile, biometrics trends
Fiserv Inc. released the results of Expectations & Experiences, its quarterly consumer trends survey, which identified notable shifts in the way people pay, driven in large part by mobile technology. The report also highlighted consumer expectations for secure, real-time transactions. The survey of more than 3,000 U.S. banking consumers was conducted by Harris Poll on behalf of Fiserv, and revealed a significant rise in mobile banking, and greater interest in biometric authentication.
Mastercard releases new EMV data
Mastercard published data on the progress of U.S. deployment of EMV (Europay, Mastercard and Visa) by issuing banks, merchants and consumers. To date, 88 percent of Mastercard-branded consumer cards in U.S. circulation were chip enabled and two million merchant locations had activated chip-card technology at the POS.
PSCU, Glenbrook explore CU blockchain
PSCU collaborated with Glenbrook Partners LLC on a white paper on blockchain technology and its potential for credit unions. Glenbrook Partners interviewed credit union leaders from across the nation to build a credit union roadmap. The resulting discussions found a significant awareness of blockchain technology and much ongoing dialogue about applying the technology to address operational and logistical challenges facing credit unions today.
CUP collaborates on audio card
China's Qilong and Shenzhen Qianhai Exce-card Technology entered into a strategic agreement to coordinate with banks on issuance of China Union Pay audio-bank cards. The new Bank Audio Card, which makes sounds when buttons on the card are pressed, can function as a regular card or audio recognition system whereby users press a button and enter a dynamic passcode to make payments. The expected lifespan per card is five to 10 years with an average usage rate of 30,000 to 50,000 times, the companies stated.
eBay teams with Myer on VR
eBay Inc. and Myer Pty. Ltd., Australia's largest department store group, joined forces to launch the world's first virtual reality (VR) department store. Throughout the VR experience, Australian customers can virtually browse more than 12,500 Myer products, which can be selected and added to a cart using eBay's Sight Search. eBay and Myer are also offering shoppers a limited number of free shopticals, which are specially designed VR viewers offered by eBay.
ESS, MobileBytes partner
Essential Systems Solutions teamed with MobileBytes LLC, an EMV-capable, iPad-based POS technology provider to the restaurant and bar industry. The partnership will enable ESS to offer clients a full-featured, cloud-based POS system for iPad. "MobileBytes POS helps us complete our line of solutions by offering an affordable POS system to merchants that are concerned with keeping start-up costs down," said Michael Tash, Vice President of Customer Relations for ESS.
FIS powers CO-OP cardless ATMs
FIS partnered with CO-OP Financial Services to expand its Cardless Cash program through CO-OP network ATMs. CO-OP currently provides members of participating credit unions with surcharge-free access to accounts through its nationwide ATM network. FIS Cardless Cash will be added to the CO-OP ATM Terminal Driving services menu in a pilot project expected to launch in the first quarter of 2017, the company stated.
JetPay aligns with Womply
JetPay Corp partnered with Womply to offer merchants JetPay Insights, a platform that provides merchants a 360-degree view of their business performance through advanced analytics, online reputation management and more. According to JetPay, Insights is an innovative platform that helps businesses track revenue, protect online reputation, understand customers through in-depth analytics, view market and competitor trends, and simplify the process of running a business.
Olo, Conversable integrate services
Olo and Conversable Inc., two enterprise Software-as-a-Service commerce platforms, teamed to deliver social ordering using chat and messenger applications for the restaurant industry. The integration allows customers to place orders using popular messenger applications while pulling in live menu and item availability. Customers are given a link to complete payment on a secure server where they can quickly check out, the companies said.
Revel adds Punchh to services
Revel Systems partnered with Punchh Inc., adding mobile engagement, marketing automation and customer relationship management (CRM) to its cloud-based iPad POS suite to help restaurant chain clients enhance the customer experience. "With one of the largest and most powerful loyalty and CRM platforms in the industry, we're able to expand our reach into the enterprise market," said Bobby Marhamat, Chief Revenue Officer of Revel.
Shift4, Multidev, Ingenico launch joint system
Payment gateway Shift4 Corp and omnichannel software developer Multidev Technologies Inc. installed EMV-ready smart terminals from Ingenico Group for retailer Opening Ceremony. Shift4 CEO Dave Oder said, "Shift4 works with the industry's technology leaders to provide merchants the most capable solutions available. We're proud to partner with Multidev and Ingenico to offer our friends at Opening Ceremony stores, as well as thousands of other retailers, a comprehensive EMV solution that keeps payment data out of their environment entirely…"
SMITH aligns with Episerver
SMITH, an experiential commerce agency, formed a strategic partnership with Episerver, a global digital content and commerce platform for business-to-business and business-to-consumer applications. "SMITH's commitment to experiential commerce, coupled with our Digital Experience Cloud, will elevate Episerver's commerce solutions and make for a great advantage for our mutual customers in North America," said Mark Duffell, President and CEO at Episerver.
TrustCommerce, ProfitStars partner
TrustCommerce formed a partnership with ProfitStars, an automated clearing house (ACH) solutions provider and financial services software innovator. By combining Profitstars' Enterprise Payment Solutions with TrustCommerce secure payment solutions, ProfitStars can tokenize customer ACH information for repeat, recurring and installment payments to address clients' unique payment acceptance needs and keep sensitive data out of scope for compliance.
Unity FI Solutions teams with Nobel Learning
Unity FI Solutions partnered with Nobel Learning Communities Inc., a network of more than 200 private schools in 19 states and Washington, D.C., to launch an online platform that allows Nobel Learning's schools to accept electronic payments from parents at no additional cost to the schools, the companies said. The system enables Nobel School parents to electronically pay for items like tuition, sports, testing fees, textbooks, cafeteria costs, and before and after school care.
GMO invests in MacroKiosk
GMO Internet Group subsidiary, GMO Payment Gateway Inc., entered into an investment agreement to acquire a substantial stake in Macro Kiosk Group. GMO-PG will make direct cash investments into MacroKiosk to further grow its global footprint as an end-to-end mobile payment, authentication, notification, and enterprise mobility solutions enabler as it continues to expand business in Southeast Asia, the company said.
iZettle purchases intelligentpos
iZettle acquired intelligentpos, a cloud-based POS solution for shops, bars and restaurants in the UK. According to iZettle, the acquisition joins the companies into a one-stop-shop for commerce in store and on the go. Together iZettle and intelligentpos will provide an integrated payment and POS solution that allows small businesses to accept card payments and access the hundreds of features on the POS app for managing and growing their businesses, the companies stated.
Paysafe buys Income Access
Paysafe Group expanded its product capabilities through the acquisition of Income Access Group, an affiliate technology business. Founded in 2002, Income Access is based in Montreal with employees in Vancouver, London and Brisbane. "This transaction delivers on Paysafe's strategic objectives to provide relevant payment solutions that serve the evolving needs of our merchants," said Joel Leonoff, President and CEO at Paysafe.
Eubanks joins Kount board
Kount Inc. added Gordon Eubanks to its Board of Directors. According to Kount, Eubanks' extensive leadership and technology experience will be an asset for the company, which has continued to see growth and innovation following last year's $80 million investment from the CVC Growth Fund. Eubanks, who comes from leadership roles at Oblix Inc. and Symantec Corp., is expected to provide strategic guidance as the company accelerates expansion.
Point Inside welcomes Giusti, Ferguson, Priory
Point Inside added Patrick Giusti as Chief Revenue Officer, Brandon Ferguson as Chief Financial Officer and Ricky Priory as Vice President of Retail Solutions. The company also promoted Keane Watterson to Senior Vice President of Retail Partner Success to reinforce and expand Point Inside's position as a digital in-store shopping experience technology provider.
Lewis tapped by Paragon
Paragon Application Systems hired Spencer Lewis for the position of Strategic Accounts Executive. In his new role, Lewis will manage Paragon's large clients and prospects including leading financial institutions, major interchanges, software providers and payment processors. He brings over 25 years payments industry experience to his new role, having led strategic sales and acquisition initiatives for ACI Worldwide and Wex Inc.
Riley joins Mercator Advisory Group
Mercator Advisory Group added financial services industry veteran Brian Riley to its team as Director of Credit Advisory Service. Prior to Mercator, Riley served several top tier national credit card issuers in senior management credit policy, operations and system design functions, with an emphasis on applying scoring and technology solutions to acquisition, credit, collection and fraud.
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