Ant Small and Micro Financial Services Group Co., Ltd. (Ant Financial) entered into definitive agreements with investors for its Series C equity financing totaling approximately $14 billion. Funds raised will be used to accelerate Alipay's globalization plans and invest in developing technology to further enhance the company's ability to deliver inclusive financial services to unbanked and underbanked consumers and small enterprises globally, the company stated, adding the capital will also be used to cultivate high-tech talent in emerging markets.
Digital gifting company Buyatab Online Inc. won the Growth Company of the Year Award at the 25th Annual BC Technology Impact Awards, hosted by the British Columbia Technology Industry Association. Buyatab's solution allows merchants to boost their digital and physical gift card business by leveraging the rapid growth of social media and mobile device usage, the company stated. "The tremendous business growth we have enjoyed is the result of our team's hard work, ambition and passion to innovate and to support our merchant clients," Buyatab CEO Matias Marquez added.
The Electronic Transactions Association is accepting nominations for its inaugural class of ETA Hall of Fame inductees. The ETA stated the criteria includes: recognition within the industry as a founder, pioneer, visionary or icon; enduring legacy and impact of contributions to the industry for a minimum of 10 years; active industry engagement and indisputable service as an ambassador of the industry; and established record of innovation within payments technology. The class will be honored at the Strategic Leadership Forum coming up Oct. 2 to 4, 2018. Submit nominations here: www.electran.org/eta-events/2018-hall-of-fame/.
The National Retail Federation, other retail groups and two major ATM networks formed the Secure Payments Partnership to improve the security of the U.S. electronic payments system ‒ ranging from credit and debit cards to emerging technology. "The U.S. payments infrastructure should be the strongest, most innovative and most secure in the world, but we won't get there unless we change the way we make security decisions," stated NRF Senior Vice President and General Counsel Stephanie Martz. Initial members include the NRF, Food Marketing Institute, National Association of Convenience Stores, National Grocers Association, Shazam network and First Data's Star Network. The coalition marks the first time financial services companies have joined retailers' efforts to improve payments security, the NRF said.
New York State Attorney General Barbara D. Underwood said major business and consumer organizations endorsed the Stop Hacks and Improve Electronic Data Security Act (SHIELD Act), S6933-A and A8884A, the Attorney General's legislation to close major gaps in New York's data security laws. Under the SHIELD Act, companies would have a legal responsibility to adopt "reasonable" administrative, technical and physical safeguards for sensitive data; the bill also would expand the types of data that trigger reporting requirements. The AARP, Partnership for New York City and Consumers Union expressed strong support for the bill, Underwood reported. She also released the Small Business Guide to Cybersecurity in New York State, which offers tips on how to protect sensitive data and what to do in the event of a data breach.
Visa Europe experienced a system shut down during peak business hours on June 1, interrupting service at POSs and various ATMs in Britain, Ireland and other European countries. Visa determined the disruption was due to a hardware failure within one of its European systems and not any unauthorized access or cyberattack. By evening, the system had been fully restored. Some industry observers noted that failures on a massive scale such as this one could hinder progress toward a cashless future, where 100 percent reliability is expected.
U.S. District Judge John A. Houston sentenced Daniel Stephen Wray ‒ the leader of a credit card fraud ring that stole account information from dozens of San Diego residents and used it to purchase over $70,000 of merchandise at area retailers ‒ to 51 months in prison. Wray was also ordered to pay $76,489.35 in restitution. Investigators believe many of the victims' identities and credit card numbers were stolen after Wray and his co-conspirators installed a skimmer at a La Jolla, Calif. gas station.
Commerce-as-a-service provider Digital River Inc. released a new study conducted by Forrester Consulting titled Nurture Channel Partner Loyalty to Succeed in the Digital Age. Areas discussed in the report include why channel partner loyalty is wavering and threatening end-customer experiences, the right tools and incentives to support changing dynamics of the channel ecosystem, and how brands can modernize their technology ecosystem to support connected ecommerce experiences.
The Nilson Report released its 10th edition of The World's Top Card Issuers and Merchant Acquirers. It includes data on 293 acquirers and 1,083 issuers. Figures incorporate number of cards in circulation with spending for credit and debit cards in each world region: Asia-Pacific, Canada, Europe, Latin America, United States and Middle-East-Africa. Industry totals for each region are shown by the following brands: Visa, Mastercard, American Express, UnionPay, Diners Club, Discover and JCP. To order visit, www.nilsonreport.com/research.
WalletHub released two key reports: the Q2 2018 Fed Rate Hike Report and 2018 Credit Card Debt Study, accompanied by a credit card survey. The first concluded the most recent Federal Reserve rate hike would cost people with credit card debt an extra $1.6 billion in 2018 alone. And the credit card debt study reported consumers repaid $40.3 billion in credit card debt during the first quarter of 2018, the second-largest quarterly paydown recorded.
Ingenico ePayments, the online and mobile commerce division of Ingenico Group, reported that FXCM Group LLC, a provider of online foreign exchange trading, selected Ingenico as its trusted payment processing partner, providing customers worldwide a highly secure and simple platform to deposit and trade foreign exchange. FXCM offers advanced trading tools and meets strict financial standards and regulations; with the support of Ingenico's services, FXCM can ensure transactions are handled in the most secure means possible, the partners stated.
Linked2pay, a risk management and payments technology provider, teamed with PUSH Payments to develop and deploy instant merchant settlements. The partners stated they will soon provide this service under an agreement with a top five acquirer in the United States. "An instant merchant settlement solution that is available around the clock and even on holidays that settles in real funds reshapes the card acceptance value proposition," noted Robert "Jay" McShirley, CEO of linked2pay.
NACHA – The Electronic Payments Association selected Alacriti as a Preferred Partner for electronic bill presentment and payments. NACHA Preferred Partners are a select group of innovators that contribute to the association's strategic efforts in support of the payments ecosystem by removing friction, increasing ease, accessibility and efficiency, as well as supporting sound risk management and security for ACH payments, NACHA stated. Alacriti's selection was driven by its OrbiPay solution, which enables organizations to provide convenient, flexible bill presentment and payment options to their customers, the association added.
Secure payment processing innovator Shift4 Payments LLC and JourneyTEAM-RDA, a Microsoft consultant and Retail Management Hero (RMH) dealer, collaborated to create an integrated, secure payment solution for RMH and Microsoft Dynamics RMS (Retail Management System) users. The partnership gives retailers the added value of a complete payment solution that is fully integrated with RMH and Microsoft Dynamics RMS and includes a secure payment network connection, point-to-point encrypted credit card terminals, full merchant services and much more, the companies stated.
As part of PayPal Inc.'s efforts to provide merchants and consumers more personalized commerce experiences, PayPal acquired Jetlore, an artificial intelligence (AI)-powered prediction platform for retailers. Jetlore was founded in 2011 by Ph.D. students from Stanford University's computer science program with the goal of applying the power of machine learning to the retail market. According to PayPal, this acquisition will enhance and accelerate its marketing solutions, adding new capabilities to expand its value proposition for merchants beyond the online checkout experience.
Paysafe Group Ltd., a global payment company headquartered in Isle of Man, completed the acquisition of iPayment Holdings Inc., a U.S.-based provider of payment and processing solutions for small and midsize businesses that generated processing volumes of over $25 billion in 2017 from more than 137,000 merchant customers across the country, Paysafe stated. Todd Linden, CEO of Paysafe in North America, will run the expanded organization. O.B. Rawls IV, iPayment's former CEO, along with iPayment CFO, Robert Purcell, have both accepted new leadership roles within Paysafe.
Global payments solutions provider TSYS acquired iMobile3 LLC, a provider of private-label small business payment solutions. iMobile3's customizable payment solutions include mobile and tablet point-of-sale products, integrated with value added services, TSYS stated. "As the industry continues to evolve, TSYS intends to lead the charge in providing businesses with the best possible tools to compete in today's hyper-competitive landscape," said Philip McHugh, Senior Executive Vice President and President, Merchant Solutions at TSYS. "The acquisition of iMobile3 continues to propel TSYS forward to reach our goal of becoming the number one payments solutions provider to small and medium size businesses in the U.S."
Marking Fluent Commerce's emergence in North America, Bill Friend, the former Vice President of Sales at SAP Hybris, joined Fluent Commerce as the company's new Vice President of North America. With over 20 years of experience in the sales and business development industries, Friend has a proven track record of accelerating software companies and expediting innovation and revenue growth, the company said. Fluent, previously established in Australia and the United Kingdom, offers a cloud- based order management company geared for omnichannel retailers.
Simon Hunt joined Mastercard as Executive Vice President to head its cybersecurity solutions unit, where he will be responsible for further enhancing the company's security capabilities for cardholders, customers, merchants and other stakeholders in light of the growing cybercrime threat, Mastercard said. Hunt has been a leader in the cybersecurity space for more than 20 years and is widely recognized as an industry speaker and seasoned entrepreneur. He previously served in executive technology roles at McAfee LLC, Intel Corp., and most recently as the Chief Technology Officer at data protection firm WinMagic.
Financial technology company POSaBIT Ltd. named Andy Sweet as its new Chief Technology Officer. He will provide technical leadership for a growing team of software engineers, as well as head the evaluation and implementation of new systems and infrastructure. Sweet has a proven history of technical leadership, guiding teams at both startups and at more mature companies, POSaBIT stated, adding that during his tenure PhotoRocket's team grew from five to 25, and QPass grew from 10 to over 200 employees.
Transaction Network Services Inc. hired telecommunication industry veteran Bill Versen to the newly created position of Chief Product Officer. In this role, Versen will oversee TNS' global product vision, product design and development, and product marketing and management. Before joining TNS, Versen, a 21-year veteran of the telecommunications industry, was Director of Product Management at Harman International, a Samsung company, with specific responsibility for its Ignite cloud platform.
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