Building on its cloud-based wedding planning and business management platform for wedding professionals, Aisle Planner Inc. launched a new website, aisleplanner.com, filled with expert advice for all parties involved in weddings. Created by a team of wedding planners, the software-as-a-service wedding suite offers online tools for lead tracking, contracts, customer relationship management and fully integrated payment processing.
AutoGravity Corp., creator of a fintech platform that enables car shoppers to buy and finance new and used cars via smartphone, recently surpassed 1 million users. With AutoGravity's digital retail solution, car buyers can browse thousands of cars and receive up to four personalized finance offers on vehicles in minutes. In meeting increased demand for transparency in lending, AutoGravity noted that as of mid-November it had received over $1 billion in vehicle finance requests from consumers this year.
Bluewater Grill, which operates seven restaurants in Southern California and Phoenix, will deploy TableSafe Inc.'s RAIL pay-at-table platform for full-service restaurants. "There's tremendous value in having a single guest payment solution that's multi-faceted," said Bluewater Grill co-owner Jim Ulcickas. "It does much more than just take payments." Housed inside a patented billfold, the RAIL device offers self-pay, tip auto-calculate, split bill, email receipt and other features.
Chargeback Gurus ecommerce chargeback and fraud prevention solution received the 2017 Gold Stevie Award for Company of the Year – Business Products. More than 1,500 entries were submitted in over 30 categories by organizations and individuals from across the globe. "We are honored to be recognized on the world stage as company of the year," said Chargeback Gurus co-founder and Chief Executive Officer Srii Srinivasan. "It's a wonderful time to be a woman in business, a Chargeback Guru and a Guru client."
Miva Inc. an enterprise ecommerce platform provider, unveiled its Ecommerce Resource Center, a hub for Miva's complete collection of white papers, infographics, educational webinars and more. "Our new Ecommerce Resource Center is your one-stop-shop for the resources you and your team need to help scale up your ecommerce store and refine your online strategy," said Benjamin Arp, Miva Solutions Architect.
On Nov. 21, 2017, the Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA) Instant Credit Transfer scheme created by the European Payments Council went live for nearly 600 payments service providers from eight European countries. The scheme allows up to 15,000 euros to be transferred electronically across Europe in less than 10 seconds, 24/7, according to the EPC. The geographic scope of the scheme is expected to progressively expand to 34 European countries.
"With its numerous advantages, the SCT Inst scheme fully anchors European payments in the anywhere, anytime digital world," said Javier Santamaría, Chair of the EPC. "Inst is the only regional initiative of this kind in the world. The European payment community can be proud of the work achieved to make instant euro credit transfers a reality today. I can only encourage PSPs who have not joined SCT Inst yet to do it as soon as possible."
Shopping rewards app Shopkick Inc. recently added travel rewards through new partnerships with travel websites Booking.com, Hotels.com and CheapOair.com. Shopkick users who book accommodations on their mobile devices can earn rewards on flights, hotels, rental cars, restaurants, retail establishments and more, according to Shopkick. "Within weeks of launching, travel has become a top five category in mobile shopping," said Bill Demas, CEO of Shopkick.
POS printer manufacturer Star Micronics EMEA received certification for the first Apple AirPrint POS printer, the new Star TSP654II AirPrint. It is the first 80 and 58mm receipt and ticket POS printer on the market to be Apple AirPrint certified, the company noted. AirPrint provides wireless mobile printing for Apple iPad, iPhone, iPod and MacBook users via various private networks.
POS software developer Vend launched Dott, an artificial intelligence (AI) tool for retail stores. Dott apparently learns about retail businesses based on how they use the Vend Platform, analyzing sales, product, customer and inventory information in real-time "Vend is one of the only pure cloud-based retail POS platforms for inventory-based retailers," said Vaughan Rowsell, founder of Vend. "Introducing Dott means the system can learn things about retail and develop insights that haven’t been available before for small-to-medium etail store owners."
A Citi Retail Services survey found over two-thirds of Americans who participate in rewards programs expect to save money this holiday season through redemptions, and 86 percent are more loyal to brands where they participate in such programs. "Customers are taking a holistic approach to their holiday shopping by researching their purchases, joining rewards programs and consolidating their spending at specific retailers or on designated payment products to achieve hard dollar savings during the holiday season," said Leslie McNamara, Managing Director, Business and Market Development for CRS.
Discover Financial Services annual holiday shopping survey revealed that 62 percent of consumers are very or moderately concerned about identify theft or fraud this holiday season, yet 73 percent said recent data breaches won't affect their holiday shopping habits. Sixty-two percent of respondents said they monitor financial statements for suspicious activity, 41 percent monitor credit reports, 38 percent use credit cards with built-in security features,18 percent subscribe to identity protection services, and 9 percent do nothing to guard against fraud.
Mercator Advisory Group's 2017 ATM Market Benchmark Report delivers statistics on the U.S. and global ATM market and evidence of ATM's changing role as banks and credit unions consolidate branch offices, broaden ATM footprints and turn to independent ATM deployers to manage and operate the devices. The report also examines enhanced capabilities that will make ATMs a central channel for consumers to navigate personalized banking experiences.
SecurityScorecard released its 2017 Retail & E-Commerce Cybersecurity Report, an analysis of cybersecurity vulnerabilities across 1,924 companies monitored from January 2017 through October 2017. Researchers found that merchants, major credit card issuers and others in the retail industry are failing to keep up with critical security processes and security controls needed to protect shoppers. The retail industry ranked fifth of 17 major U.S. industries surveyed, with clothing, technology and department store retailers scoring lowest in cybersecurity performance.
ABC Financial Services, a software and payment provider to the health and fitness industry, entered a partnership agreement with data-driven digital gift card program distributor Promotion Vault. Clubs using Promotion Vault pay only when gift cards are activated. "Promotion Vault is a turnkey solution deeply integrated with ABC, making it possible to incentivize favorable behavior like referrals and fitness assessment completion," stated Kelly Card, Senior Vice President of Partner Relations at ABC.
ACI Worldwide joined the Zelle Network as a technology partner. Since January 2017, the Zelle U.S. payment network has processed over 160 million real-time, person-to-person transactions via mobile banking and standalone apps. As partners, ACI said it will provide connectivity to real-time payment networks from a single hub, bringing a broader reach to the market and empowering FIs to accelerate real-time payment deployments.
AppSwarm Inc., a technology company specializing in mobile apps, signed a letter of intent to develop a smartphone-based cash and bitcoin mobile wallet with USA Real Estate Holding Co. "We are very excited to be working within this ever-growing and evolving space," said AppSwarm CEO Ron Brewer. "This is a great opportunity for both companies, as it allows us to leverage one another's strengths and grow together."
Fiserv Inc. partnered with educational payments provider Bursari, who plans to use Fiserv's Digital Payments SDK to help schools accept one-time and recurring payments digitally from parents and other payers. "Schools and parents are looking for an easy way to pay for tuition, meal plans and other school-related expenses," said Bursari CEO Jerry Banks. "Incorporating the payment capabilities of Fiserv, we are able to deliver a complete service that allows transactions to be completed anywhere, on any device and in less time."
PayJunction teamed with ezyVet, a cloud-based management software provider for veterinary offices, to streamline payment processing for ezyVet customers. Customers will have access to PayJunction's virtual and smart terminals to accept EMV (Europay, Mastercard and Visa), near field communication (NFC) and mag stripe cards; and integrated features such as customer cards on file, electronic signature capture and recurring billing, the companies stated.
iPayment Inc., a payment processor that caters to small and midsize businesses (SMBs), closed refinancing on existing term loans and incremental borrowing, the proceeds of which will be applied to partially fund acquisition of Leaders Merchant Services LLC, an ISO specializing in credit and debit card processing and POS solutions for SMBs. In addition to portfolio expansion, business synergies resulting from the acquisition will yield incremental value, iPayment stated.
ClickPay named Rachael Methal as Chief Financial Officer. Methal brings 20 years technology finance and strategic development experience to ClickPay in such positions as Divisional CFO for Geller & Co. (for Bloomberg LP); Vice President of Technology Finance for MetLife; and, most recently, Vice President of Finance for VTS Inc. ClickPay noted that throughout her career,
Methal has enabled companies to realize their strategic vision by creating world-class finance organizations.
Ripple appointed Benjamin Lawsky, former New York Superintendent of Financial Services, to its Board of Directors, as well as Ron Will as Chief Financial Officer. Will and Lawsky will play central roles in Ripple's mission to achieve frictionless cross-border payments, the company stated. Lawsky joins Ripple's board with more than 20 years' experience in various branches of government at federal and state levels. Will's appointment follows nearly three decades of service as a senior financial executive and investment banker.
Signature Card Services added Jordan Stewart to its executive team to strengthen its sales and agent support efforts. Stewart is an accomplished payments industry professional who brings extensive agent support experience to back Signature's next phase of growth, the ISO stated. "Adding Jordan to our team will further advance our positioning in the industry, will allow us to provide improved support offerings to a larger market and to continue our strong growth momentum," said Cliff Teston, President and CEO of SCS.
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