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The Green SheetGreen Sheet

The Green Sheet Online Edition

January 08, 2024 • Issue 24:01:01

Industry Update

The Green Sheet, Inc.ANNOUNCEMENTS

Incenter launches sales engagement practice

Incenter Marketing introduces its Sales Engagement practice to assist sales teams in adopting modern technological solutions for better engagement. Led by Katrina Orlando, the company's vice president of sales engagement, the practice aims to bridge the gap between marketing and sales, offering a personalized touch in the digital age. It leverages digital tools to create meaningful client-customer interactions without overwhelming sales teams, Incenter stated, adding that services include social media presence building, digital engagement, sales training, event planning and marketing material strategies.

Plug and Play Japan picks 73 for accelerator

Plug and Play Japan chose 73 startups for its Winter/Spring 2024 batch accelerator program, running from December 2023 to March 2024. Of these, 62 percent are Japanese startups, while 38 percent come from overseas. The selected startups cover various sectors including fintech, insurtech, mobility, health, smart cities, new materials and packaging, energy, and food and beverage. Throughout the program, these startups will gain access to events and seminars for business development, including networking, mentoring and workshops, the company stated, adding that Plug and Play Japan is a global innovation platform focused on supporting corporate partners and fostering collaboration between startups and industry leaders. The program culminates in a Demo Day for startups to showcase their progress.

Visa expands Fintech Fast Track program

Visa's Fintech Fast Track program now includes Visa Direct, connecting fintechs to real-time money movement capabilities. This enables fintechs to launch programs for global transfers to eligible cards, bank accounts, and wallets, Visa stated, adding that Visa Direct supports various use cases like P2P payments, business payouts and merchant settlements. The program also offers personalized tools, including Visa Consulting & Analytics support, Amazon Web Services credits, and solutions like the Merchant Search API and Visa Risk Manager. Visa also noted that over the past year, Visa has welcomed 42 new clients to Fintech Fast Track in North America.

Zally advocates for continuous user authentication

Manchester, UK-based Zally is advocating for a shift in cybersecurity, urging online businesses to prioritize continuous authentication and behavioral biometric analysis. Zally's solution, which will launch in 2024, will authenticate users throughout their digital interactions, enhancing security and user experience, the company stated, adding that authentication approaches must go beyond the limitations of passwords and multi-factor authentication. The shift, the company noted, is crucial due to recent reports highlighting password vulnerabilities and use of shared passwords across platforms. By reducing reliance on traditional passwords, Zally aims to help combat online fraud effectively to create a safer online environment.

The Green Sheet, Inc.RESEARCH

NFC payments market to reach $507.1B globally

The global NFC payments market, valued at $25.8 billion in 2022, is projected to reach $507.1 billion by 2032, according to a new report by Allied Market Research. Growth is driven by the increasing use of smartphones for fast and secure transactions, as well as the rising adoption of contactless payments in retail stores. However, the need for NFC-compatible smartphones may hinder adoption, especially among users with older devices. Advancements in mobile payment technologies and integration of NFC capabilities in apps like Apple Pay and Google Pay offer growth opportunities. The report analyzes key players' strategies and the competitive landscape in the NFC payments market.

Ransomware attacks rise 67 percent from 2022

NCC Group's November Threat Pulse found that in November 2023, global ransomware attacks surged by 30 percent over October, for totals of 442 and 341 attacks, respectively. The November attacks pushed the year's total to 4,276, exceeding earlier predictions, researchers found. The industrials sector remained the most targeted, with 146 attacks, a 28 percent increase from October. Consumer cyclicals and healthcare followed. LockBit dominated as the most active threat actor. Notably, banking software Carbanak returned in November, evolving and impersonating various business-related software, researchers found, adding that cybersecurity vigilance remains essential, especially in the industrials sector.

Financial cards, payments flourish in UAE

The United Arab Emirates is progressing toward a cashless society, driven by the increasing adoption of digital payments, contactless cards and prepaid solutions, ResearchAndMarkets reported. This trend, researchers noted, is motivated by the convenience of card and digital payments, along with rewards and cash-back incentives, reducing cash usage. The Financial Cards and Payments in UAE report explores the market for various types of financial cards, including credit, debit, prepaid and smart cards. It provides insights into key players, card circulation, transaction numbers and values, offering strategic analysis and forecasts for the sector's growth, according to ResearchAndMarkets.

The Green Sheet, Inc.PARTNERSHIPS

Affirm, Walmart expand self-checkout

Affirm said it expanded its partnership with Walmart, offering transparent pay-over-time options at self-checkout kiosks in over 4,500 Walmart stores across the United States. This allows eligible shoppers to make monthly payments for electronics, apparel, toys and more, the company noted. The company further cited in-house research showing that 54 percent of Americans seek buy now, pay later options, and 76 percent would delay or forgo purchases without Affirm. Affirm pointed out that its services are also available at Walmart Vision and Auto Centers, and customers are always presented with the total cost upfront, with no hidden fees.

Alchemy Pay, Worldpay from FIS join forces

Alchemy Pay, a fiat-crypto payment gateway that offers a range of payment options, partnered with global acquirer Worldpay to expand payment channels and capabilities. Users can now use Visa and Mastercard on Alchemy Pay's On & Off-Ramp for seamless crypto transactions, including NFTs, the partners stated. Worldpay, acquired by FIS in 2019, said it handles over 130 million daily transactions across 146 countries, making it a key player in international payments. This collaboration aims to boost crypto adoption by simplifying transactions, the partners added, noting that Worldpay previously partnered with prominent crypto entities, further indicating its commitment to crypto's future.

Evita, Layer2 team up on cross-border payments

Layer2 Financial, a banking-as-a-service and paytech firm, partnered with Evita, a B2B cross-border payments specialist. This alliance optimizes cross-border payments by leveraging each company's strengths, the partners stated. Evita said it specializes in facilitating high-value transactions (for example, luxury cars) that are faster and more cost-effective than traditional bank transactions, and it chose Layer2 due to Layer2's speedy onboarding and efficient compliance handling. In addition, Evita will use Layer2 to open For Benefit Of (FBO) accounts to help it operate seamlessly in U.S. dollars.

The Green Sheet, Inc.ACQUISITIONS

Future acquires Fan Rewards startup

Future, a climate-positive fintech company, acquired Fan Rewards, an AI-driven rewards platform for fans of artists and influencers. Future aims to create a payments and rewards platform for the sustainable economy, making eco-friendly choices accessible and exciting for households. The company said FutureCard Visa Debit Card offers over 5 percent cash back on sustainable purchases, while the app provides additional rewards for renewable energy purchases. The acquisition, Future noted, expands its community and leverages AI to identify rewarding sustainable practices.

Improving Payments acquires Science of Sales portfolio

Improving Payments acquired the portfolio of Science of Sales, a New York-based payment processing company, as part of its commitment to providing top-tier solutions for merchants and enhancing its industry presence. The acquisition, Improving Payments noted, enhances its strategic growth plan and reinforces its dedication to excellent customer service and payment solutions. The acquisition also diversifies Improving Payments' client base and enables the company to offer innovative solutions to a broader range of businesses, Improving Payments stated.

ReCo acquires EZ SecurePay online platform

ReCo acquired the EZ SecurePay online payments platform for municipalities from F&E Payment Pros. The integration of EZ SecurePay into ReCo's existing infrastructure, known as ReCo Anywhere, has enhanced the FinTech software solution, improving user experience, optimizing transactions and enhancing security, ReCo stated. This strategic move, ReCo added, allows ReCo to broaden its reach within the government sector, simplifying online and in-person payments for utilities, taxes, licenses, fuel, and more. Jeff Brodsly, CEO of ReCo and 100GROUP, emphasized the company's commitment to enhancing financial efficiency for municipalities and improving service delivery.

Visa to acquire majority Interest in Prosa

Visa is set to acquire a majority stake in Mexican payments processor Prosa to boost secure digital payments adoption in the country. Prosa will maintain its independence and technology infrastructure while benefiting from Visa's global network and expertise, Visa stated, adding that Prosa will continue offering brand-agnostic solutions under its current leadership. The deal is subject to regulatory approvals and due to close in the second half of 2024. Visa's investment is expected to enhance Mexico's payment ecosystem, offering innovative solutions and driving competition while enabling Prosa to enhance services, including real-time payments and fraud risk management.

The Green Sheet, Inc.APPOINTMENTS

Mike Kelly joins Onramp Funds

Mike Kelly, a finance veteran with over 25 years of experience, joined Onramp Funds as head of finance. In his role, he will manage creditor relationships, develop new credit facilities and ensure that the Onramp team has the necessary tools for risk management, analytics, sales and marketing teams to meet their growth targets. Additionally, he will oversee accounting, as well as financial planning and analysis, including annual plans, budgets and forecasts. Reporting directly to CEO Eric Youngstrom, Kelly's appointment aligns with Onramp's mission to support ecommerce merchants in achieving their business goals, the company stated. Previously, Kelly served at Dell Financial Services LLC for nearly 20 years, leading strategic initiatives to enhance profitability. Onramp provides financing to ecommerce businesses, aligning with their sales cycle needs.

Socure expands leadership team

Socure recently appointed three new executives: Arun Kumar, chief technology officer; Katia Mar, senior vice president marketing; and Steve Rooney, senior vice president global sales. According to Socure, these appointments signify the company's commitment to innovation and leadership in digital identity verification and fraud prevention. Socure CEO Johnny Ayers emphasized the collective expertise of these leaders as an accelerant in Socure's journey to redefine the landscape of digital identity verification and fraud prevention globally.

Kumar brings expertise from his roles at Luma Financial Technologies, Citadel and Amazon, enhancing Socure's position in AI-driven identity and fraud solutions; Mar, with a background in cybersecurity and marketing roles at Onfido, Sift and Thomson Reuters, will elevate Socure's brand presence and align sales and marketing strategies; and Rooney, from NICE Actimize and with decades of experience in fintech sales and fraud solutions, will optimize Socure's go-to-market strategy, Socure note. end of article

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