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The Green SheetGreen Sheet

The Green Sheet Online Edition

May 27, 2024 • Issue 24:05:02

Industry Update

The Green Sheet, Inc.ANNOUNCEMENTS

Elevate wins 2024 HR Tech Award for AI

Elevate, a consumer-directed benefits administration platform, was awarded the Best Advance in Practical AI in the Total Rewards and Employee Wellbeing category by Lighthouse Research & Advisory for its 2024 HR Tech Awards. Elevate's AI-driven platform speeds up claim processing for flexible spending accounts, with 90 percent of claims approved instantly, which enhances the user experience for administrators and employees, making benefits more accessible and efficient, award judges noted. The HR Tech Awards recognize leading companies for solving customer needs effectively.

Fractal boasts cheapest payment rails in U.S.

Fractal, a new fintech platform for SaaS companies founded by payment veterans Brian Nichols and James Greaves, said it launched efficient payment processing services in the United States. Offering up to 30 percent savings, Fractal competes with industry giants through lowest-cost routing and attractive revenue-sharing plans, the company stated, adding that the platform provides pre-built payment flows and an API for customization. Nichols and Greaves emphasized that Fractal's service enables SaaS companies to add payments easily, boosting revenue without raising prices.

NFC Forum streamlines testing requirements

The NFC Forum added Test Release 13.2 (TR13.2) to its certification program to simplify testing and make it more cost-effective. This update allows for testing of market-ready products with release candidate software, reducing the time-to-market for NFC-enabled products and streamlining the number of required tests without compromising coverage or functionality, the forum stated. With its specifications, the NFC Forum strives to ensure device compliance, promoting interoperability across markets. TR13.2 impacts specific NDEF-application tests and does not affect other industry bodies using NFC Forum testing practices.

Women in Payments EME honors Lena Hackelöer

Lena Hackelöer, founder & CEO of Brite Payments, was awarded the Inspiration Award by Women in Payments at the EMEA Symposium. Recognized for her leadership and role in advancing the payments industry, Hackelöer has led Brite Payments, a provider of instant bank payments, to significant growth. Under her guidance, Brite expanded into key European markets and launched Brite Instant Payments in Germany. Hackelöer's work exemplifies her commitment to innovation and fostering an inclusive environment, contributing to the success of women in the payments sector, Women in Payments stated.

The Green Sheet, Inc.RESEARCH

SMBs concerned about fraud, inflation

KeyBank's 2024 Small Business Survey revealed that 65 percent of SMB owners are confident they can cover a month's operating expenses with cash reserves. However, 37 percent expect a slight increase in operating costs due to inflation, and 27 percent foresee a significant rise. Main challenges respondents mentioned include fluctuating sales (35 percent), delayed payments (29 percent) and high overhead costs (28 percent). Owners are proactively cutting costs, boosting cash reserves and exploring financing options to ensure resilience. Additionally, SMBs are seeking advice from banks on cost management, emergency funds and revenue diversification. The survey reflects optimism amid economic uncertainties, including concerns over payment fraud and potential policy changes after the U.S. presidential election.

U.S. bankruptcies continue upward trend

G2 Risk Solutions (G2RS) noted increasing bankruptcy filings despite strong economic indicators. Bankruptcy filings rose 16.2 percent in the first quarter of 2024 compared to the previous year, continuing a trend from 2022. In addition, if the trend continues, G2RS projects a 32 percent increase in filings from 2022 to 2024, with notable rises across all U.S. regions. The Pacific and Mountain regions have seen the highest increases, with California and Arizona leading in volume. This trend could surpass pre-pandemic levels in a few years, impacting various industries, according to G2RS's Ryan Sanders.

USPF studies connected car, contextual payments

The U.S. Payments Forum released Connected Car and Contextual Payments, a new white paper on the integration of automated payments within the connected car ecosystem. As McKinsey research predicted that 95 percent of new vehicles will be connected by 2030, this paper provides essential knowledge about this evolving market, the forum stated. It covers the transaction process, connected car technologies, implementation considerations and potential security concerns. Interested parties can download the paper for free and learn about participation in future projects through the Secure Technology Alliance website, www.sta-uspf.org.

The Green Sheet, Inc.PARTNERSHIPS

Finastra, OpenFin unlocking advanced UX

Finastra and OpenFin partnered to enhance Finastra's Kondor treasury management system to improve user experience and efficiency for banks. This collaboration integrates OpenFin’s Workspace Anywhere technology into Kondor, allowing access through web browsers or as a desktop app, and supports personalized experiences and unified dashboards, the partners stated. This evolution of Kondor leverages microservices, AI and cloud capabilities to streamline treasury operations and risk management, they added, noting that the partnership marks a step forward in financial technology, making Kondor a more intuitive, powerful tool for global financial institutions.

NCR Voyix, Olo expand long-standing partnership

NCR Voyix and Olo expanded their partnership to integrate Olo's Order, Pay and Engage solutions into the NCR Voyix Commerce Platform. The integration is live now for Olo Order, with Pay and Engage to follow. The collaboration, the partners stated, enhances digital transactions in the restaurant industry, which currently make up only 16 percent of total transactions. The integration aims to provide restaurants with more data for personalized guest experiences and support the industry's shift to unified digital and physical interactions. Olo's ecosystem and NCR Voyix's platform together accelerate digital transformation, the partners stated.

Visa, J.P. Morgan to collaborate using Visa Direct

Visa Inc. and J.P. Morgan Payments are collaborating to enhance merchant experiences and empower cardholders through faster domestic payments in the United States using the Visa Direct network. This partnership will enable J.P. Morgan Payments, which processes over $10 trillion daily in 160+ countries in 120 currencies, to integrate faster payment solutions, improving payment processes, liquidity management and customer convenience, the partners stated. The collaboration, they added, also aligns with both companies' commitment to innovation and seamless money movement, enhancing the financial ecosystem.

The Green Sheet, Inc.ACQUISITIONS

Accel-KKR acquires Accertify from AmEx

Accel-KKR, a technology-focused private equity firm, completed the carveout acquisition of Accertify from American Express, making Accertify an independent company. Accertify, a provider of fraud prevention and payment solutions, serves major retailers and global companies in various sectors. Under this new ownership, Accertify aims to accelerate growth and innovation in fraud protection technology, Accel-KKR stated, adding that it will leverage its resources and expertise to support Accertify's growth strategy. Mark Michelon, president of Accertify, said he anticipates enhancing customer value worldwide. The transaction continues a partnership between American Express and Accertify, with Accertify remaining in Itasca, Ill.

Gallant unifies Fime, UL Solutions' payments testing

Gallant Capital Partners acquired Fime and UL Solutions' payments testing business, uniting their expertise under the Fime brand. This acquisition expands Fime's global reach and enhances its consultancy and testing services across payments, smart mobility and digital ID sectors, Fime stated. CEO Lionel Grosclaude, Fime CEO, highlighted the combination's role in supporting financial inclusion and innovation, offering comprehensive services from project ideation to launch. Fime noted that it now operates in over 19 countries, adapting to trends like open banking and digital currencies, with Gallant Capital Partners facilitating this growth phase.

JanOne to acquire fintech ALT 5 Sigma

JanOne Inc. agreed to acquire blockchain financial technology provider ALT 5 Sigma Inc. and its subsidiaries, with the closing anticipated in May 2024. ALT 5, founded in 2018, offers blockchain-powered fintech solutions, including ALT 5 Pay, a cryptocurrency payment gateway, and ALT 5 Prime, an OTC trading platform for digital assets. The acquisition involves issuing 1,799,100 shares of JanOne common stock and 34,207 shares of Series B preferred stock. ALT 5 said it aims to leverage JanOne's public listing for further growth and expansion.

Nayax acquires VMtecnologia

Nayax Ltd., a global commerce and payments platform, completed its acquisition of VMtecnologia, a Brazilian technology provider for automated self-service. This move, valued at around $22 million, with potential to reach $27 million, marks Nayax's expansion into Latin America. VMtecnologia, serving over 2,400 retailers across Brazil, brings significant revenue and a strong market position, Nayax stated. Nayax aims to enhance the Brazilian market with its technology and expertise, expecting synergies to boost revenue and operational efficiency under the leadership of VMtecnologia's CEO Eduardo Muniz.

The Green Sheet, Inc.APPOINTMENTS

Daxko appoints Jeff VanDixhorn

Ron VanDixhorn is the new CEO of Daxko, a leading software and integrated payments provider for health and wellness organizations. VanDixhorn, who has served as Daxko's president since 2021, brings extensive experience from his tenure with the company, where he significantly expanded its product suite and customer base, Daxko stated. Known for his strategic vision and leadership, VanDixhorn aims to further enhance the company's offerings and market reach, leveraging his deep understanding of the industry's evolving needs. His focus will be on customer-centric solutions and innovation, guiding Daxko through its next phase of growth.

Brian Daniell signs on with Billtrust

Brian Daniell joined Billtrust as chief customer officer, bringing over 20 years of experience in enterprise software support and services. Previously with Deltek as chief customer officer and vice president of customer care operations, Daniell expanded customer care offerings and delivered award-winning support tools. At Harper and Shuman, he established a global customer support organization recognized as an industry leader. In addition, Daniell serves on association boards and is in demand as a speaker on topics related to customer support.

Gavin McMillan steps down at RevoluGROUP

Gavin McMillan resigned as CEO and director of RevoluGROUP Canada Inc. McMillan, who joined the company in August 2023, played a key role in developing its API-driven payment-as-a-service (PaaS) model and expanding white-label partnerships and joint ventures. Bernard Lonis, chairman of the company's board, praised McMillan's contributions and wished him well. The board has begun a comprehensive search for a successor to lead the company into its next growth phase, considering both internal and external candidates.

Vasant Prabhu joins Intuit board of directors

Vasant Prabhu, former CFO and vice chairman of Visa, joined Intuit's board of directors. Prabhu's extensive experience in financial services and technology, including roles at NBCUniversal Media, Starwood Hotels and Safeway, is expected to support Intuit's growth and global expansion. He is recognized for his leadership in scaling businesses and his involvement in Visa's transformation. Prabhu expressed admiration for Intuit's innovation and said he is eager to contribute to its future development. His appointment expands Intuit’s board to 12 directors. end of article

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