11 January 2019

11th January 2019
  • Mobile/Contactless and omni-Commerce
  • Acquiring/Processing
  • Issuing
  • Open Banking
  • Digital/Retail Banking
  • Instant Payments
  • Remittances
  • APIs
  • Blockchain/DLT/Cryptocurrencies
  • Corporate Activity
  • Regulation

MOBILE/CONTACTLESS and omni-COMMERCE

UK fashion retailer Missguided has revamped its app with support from Klarna, Poq and Stripe. http://tinyurl.com/ycd5frg9

The revamp allows the retailer to offer customers the ability to pay for purchases 30 days later using Klarna’s ‘Pay later’ product.

 

Square has announced the launch of the Square In-App Payments SDK. http://tinyurl.com/yaut5eav

The SDK enables developers and sellers to process payments with Square within their consumer-facing mobile apps and establishes Square’s omnichannel payments platform.  It is now available for iOS, Android, and Flutter in the United States, Canada, UK, Australia and Japan.

 

Otto is introducing instant payments for its ecommerce customers. http://tinyurl.com/ydax4wgm

The Otto Group has partnered with the German bank Hanseatic Bank to develop an API that provides the necessary integration.

 

HP Inc has announced the development of an all-in-one POS solution for SME retail and hospitality businesses. http://tinyurl.com/yagmz8z5

The HP Engage One Prime will be launched alongside a strategic collaboration with PayPal to provide small businesses with a complete solution of hardware, point-of-sale software and payment processing. The solution is slated for release in February direct from HP and the company’s global network of authorized POS partners.

 

In a similar move, TSYS has announced the launch of Vital®, a new brand of payment products aimed at SMEs. http://tinyurl.com/y8s7oexg

The initial offering includes Vital POS, a full-featured, cloud-based point-of-sale solution set at three levels that includes a near all-in-one offer. Vital will also be available in a white-labelled version.

 

Visa and SiriusXM Connected Vehicles Services Inc, have announced they are developing a new in-vehicle payment solution. http://tinyurl.com/yafrxuye

An e-wallet is being designed to integrate into car dashboards that will allow car occupants to complete and make purchases for everyday tasks. Users will activate and authenticate payment with their Visa account using biometric authentication including voice and touchscreen commands.

 

Meanwhile Kroger Co and Microsoft have also announced a collaboration to pilot a connected store experience. http://tinyurl.com/yce75be2

Using Kroger Technology products powered by Microsoft Azure, the partners will market a Retail as a Service (RaaS) platform.

Trials are taking place involving the EDGE™  shelving system. This does not include any payment technology but future products promised include: Scan, Bag, Go; Virtual Store Manager; sensor network; and connectors to corporate systems.

 

ACQUIRING/PROCESSING

Nets and BOKIS have extended their existing agreement on International payment cards until 2021. http://tinyurl.com/ybd8e8jo

 

IXOPAY is to provide payment processing services to Österreichische Post AG. http://tinyurl.com/yavk82py

The IXOPAY white-label platform enables centralised fraud checks, dynamic transaction routing, flexible handling and integration of multiple acquirers as well as real-time, consolidated BI and reporting. In December it announced partnerships with Chase Paymentech http://tinyurl.com/ybc2z3qp and Paysafe http://tinyurl.com/ybppc5b8 .

 

BNP Paribas Group is to implement TAS Group’s CARD 3.0 solution. http://tinyurl.com/y9gvs4ho

The implementation will support the complete overhaul of the Bank’s existing debit, credit and prepaid card platform as part of its Domestic Market 2020 Strategic Plan. Initial developments will be the issuance of innovative prepaid cards for the Group’s business customers, followed by credit products for the retail market.

 

3C Payment is to support acceptance of Discover, Diners Club, PULSE and affiliate network cards across Europe and the Middle East. http://tinyurl.com/yc6xcyhh

 

ISSUING

BIN sponsor Moorwand is launching pre-paid corporate and consumer UnionPay cards in the UK. http://tinyurl.com/yc6fjml2

Using the UPayCard brand, these will be the first UnionPay cards issued in the UK. The initial rollout has been to a group of existing UPayCard account holders with expansion planned subsequently including in Europe as UnionPay look to grow their presence.

 

OPEN BANKING

OBIE – One Year of Open Banking.  http://tinyurl.com/y84ol3jz  PDF http://tinyurl.com/ycno8df2

OBIE says that over 100 regulated entities are enrolled in Open Banking with in excess of 100 waiting to join. There are now 67 third party providers and 33 account providers, with 17 third party providers live with customers.

 

IATA has successfully completed the first “IATA Pay” ticket purchase transaction in a live test environment. http://tinyurl.com/y7awhqcp

Developed in partnership with ipagoo, IATA Pay is an industry-supported initiative to develop a new payment option for consumers when purchasing a ticket directly from an airline website. The live test was conducted under the UK’s Open Banking framework with IATA Pay pilot airlines, including Cathay Pacific Airways, Scandinavian Airlines and Emirates.

IATA continues to work with Deutsche Bank on a prototype for Europe (excluding the UK), starting with the German market, which is expected to undergo testing soon.

 

DIGITAL/RETAIL BANKING

Starling Bank’s plans for 2019 include a Euro account, credit cards and lending expansion. http://tinyurl.com/yb2nr87j

The Challenger bank is also expecting to hit one million customers, creating a sustainable business model that it expects to be profitable by 2020. To counteract fallout from Brexit it is establishing a subsidiary in Ireland and subsequently plans to target the French and German markets.

 

Atom Bank is joining Bacs to enhance its offer with Direct Debits. http://tinyurl.com/y9msjkq5

Atom is the fourth PSP to join Bacs in the last twelve months.

 

N26 has announced a $300m Series D funding round, valuing the digital bank at $2.7bn. http://tinyurl.com/yc3qwgsc

N26 is currently operating in 24 markets across Europe, with a claimed customer base of more than 2.3m. N26 will use the proceeds to drive global expansion, starting with the US launch in H1/19

 

INSTANT PAYMENTS

Elavon is now directly connected to FPS.  http://tinyurl.com/ydyls85l

Elavon claims it is the first dedicated payments provider and eCommerce business to be a direct participant.

 

Bottomline Technologies has announced it has added The Access Bank UK Limited to FPS via its Real Time Payments Service.  http://tinyurl.com/yc8epsgq

 

Reuters has reported a number of Hungary’s commercial banks have begun testing the new instant payments system being implemented by Nets for clearing house operator GIRO. http://tinyurl.com/y9778be9

 

REMITTANCES

Paysend has launched a new service branded PaySendLink. http://tinyurl.com/y957kudd

The new service enables users to send remittances abroad solely using the recipient’s mobile phone number via Paysend’s global ‘card to card’ money transfer network. Recipients will see the incoming transfer and be able to direct it to any Visa, MasterCard, UnionPay card or a bank account of their choice for immediate use or ATM withdrawal.

 

APIs

UnionPay International has announced the launch of its UPI Developer. http://tinyurl.com/yae3or4f

UPI Developer is an open platform that gives global developers access to 18 of UnionPay’s cross-border mobile Internet payment products and services through a set of APIs. UPI says the next phase will increase the variety and quantity of the APIs, further open its business capabilities to global partners, promote the update of UPI Developer, and optimize its services to UnionPay cardholders.

 

CORPORATE ACTIVITY

Mastercard is dropping its name from its brand mark in select contexts. http://tinyurl.com/yd5trmna

The Mastercard Symbol will now stand on its own across cards using the red and yellow brand mark, acceptance marks at retail locations both in the physical and digital worlds and major sponsorship properties.

 

RBS has acquired a 25% stake in digital current account operator Loot. http://tinyurl.com/y79j6mfj

RBS has invested £2m via its Bó digital bank.  This follows an initial investment of £3m in July 2018.

 

Ingenico Group and Deutscher Sparkassenverlag (DSV) completed the combination of BS PAYONE with Ingenico Retail assets in DACH. http://tinyurl.com/ych2tv24 

The JV, renamed Ingenico Payone Holding GmbH, will be owned 48% by DSV and 52% by Ingenico Group and will create the clear leading payment provider in Germany.

 

Nets has announced that the merger with Concardis Group has been completed. http://tinyurl.com/yanxug7b

The merger creates a business with approximately €500 million of EBITDA and €1.3 billion of net revenue. Group HQ will be in Ballerup, Denmark, and Nets and Concardis Group will retain their respective brands.

 

Nets has also completed the acquisition of Polish PSP Dotpay/eCard. http://tinyurl.com/y7km2re5

The Dotpay and eCard brands will be retained. Dotpay/eCard reported gross revenues of over €12m in 2017.

 

Zwipe, a Biometric payment cards developer, has announced its intention to list on the Oslo market and raise NOK120m ($13.7m). http://tinyurl.com/ycx8n8jr

Zwipe’s technology is currently being trialled in Europe and the Middle East, supported by VISA, Mastercard and Gemalto. To date its product has yet to go live commercially but the company is preparing for a breakthrough for its solution in H2/19

 

BBVA, via its investment subsidiary Propel Venture Partners, has invested in US start-up Grabango. http://tinyurl.com/y96cnjdf

Grabango has developed checkout free technology that streamlines the customer payment process and eliminates queues. Its system uses sensor hardware and computer algorithms to acquire the location of every item in the store, maintaining a virtual shopping basket for each customer. Checking out is automatic.

 

Iceland based Meniga has acquired the Stockholm-based rewards platform, Wrapp. http://tinyurl.com/yabm7s4f

The move establishes the largest transaction-driven rewards platform in the Nordics with one streamlined solution under the Meniga banner, operating from Stockholm. Current Wrapp shareholders, include Nordea, Swedbank, UniCredit, and Islandsbanki. The solution provides merchants with the ability to offer personalised rewards to consumers based on purchase behaviour.

 

BLOCKCHAIN/DLT/CRYPTOCURRENCIES

BIS – Proceeding with caution – a survey on central bank digital currency. http://tinyurl.com/ycfy6cg3  Report http://tinyurl.com/ycfy6cg3

This BIS paper takes stock of how progress and plans in this area are developing, based on a global survey of central banks. Responses show that central banks are proceeding with caution and most are only at a conceptual stage with their work. However, a couple of central banks with idiosyncratic circumstances might issue a digital currency in the short or medium term.

 

The European Banking Authority has published the results of its assessment of the applicability and suitability of EU law to crypto-assets. http://tinyurl.com/y8elhd5j  Report http://tinyurl.com/y7c65ujz

In its report, the EBA has recommended that the European Commission carry out further analysis to determine the appropriate EU-level response to issues around the current non-regulation of crypto-assets and the associated risks. The EBA also identifies a number of actions that it will take in 2019 to enhance the monitoring of financial institutions’ crypto-asset activities and consumer-facing disclosure practices.

 

REGULATION (Brexit/PSD2)

HM Treasury has issued a number of Brexit related documents that inter alia include references to €EFTs and cross-border Card usage and acceptance.

Essentially the message is “It might become more expensive” but that transactions will continue largely as at present with limited, or no, difference after the UK leaves the EU.

 

Google has been granted a PI licence by the Irish Central Bank. http://tinyurl.com/ya88z5d3

This follows it obtaining an EMI licence from the Bank of Lithuania earlier in December and adds more passporting rights to its armoury.

 

TransferWise is applying for a PI licence in Belgium to gain passporting rights in the event of a no-deal Brexit. http://tinyurl.com/ycwrr5ce

 

REGULATION (Fintech)

The European Supervisory Authorities (ESAs) have published a joint report on innovation facilitators (regulatory sandboxes and innovation hubs). http://tinyurl.com/y97m2mdm  Report http://tinyurl.com/y97ezluu

The report sets out a comparative analysis of the innovation facilitators established to date within the EU. The ESAs also set out best practices for the design and operation of innovation facilitators.  At the date of the report, 21 EU Member States and 3 EEA States have established innovation hubs and 5 EU Member States have regulatory sandboxes in operation.

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11 January 2019

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Ingenico Group

Ingenico Group has launched a AI payment-enabled chatbot that reduces the steps consumers have to take in order to complete purchases. The chatbot incorporates Ingenico’s secure payment API, enabling customers to purchase products and services within a messaging app’s chat function, bringing an end-to-end customer experience to the chat platform and enhancing conversion rates for merchants.

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