Robert McKinley, Senior Analyst/Editor Robert McKinley is an analyst of the payments industry on a daily basis for 32 years covering payment cards and payment systems from both the business side and the consumer side. McKinley is the retired founder and chief executive of RAM Research, CardWeb and CardTrak. In his prior position, McKinley has participated in more than 10,000 documented news media interviews, testified as an expert witness in two separate $billion+ U.S. anti-trust trials, testified before the U.S. Congress, assisted the GAO with paymentsIMG_2006 (1).jpeg reports, chaired numerous business conferences and provided C-Suite opinion to a multitude of Fortune 500 companies. In retirement, he has continued developing and funding digital media assets as well as contributing payments related analysis/content to a broad list of online publishers, including CardFlash, CardTrak and CardData. McKinley is also a national certified mentor with the non-profit SCORE organization with a focus on assisting Fintech startups.

Panasonic puts NFC in the aircraft cabin

Panasonic Avionics Corporation (Panasonic) is introducing EMV-compliant Near-Field Communication (NFC) technology in its in-flight entertainment (IFE) systems. Industry observers had recently predicted on-board NFC applications were years away, but Panasonic will be launching the technology with airlines in the summer of 2015. Passengers and crew will be able to use NFC-enabled smart phones and cards in-flight for high value transactions and purchases; synchronization of personal data to create just-for-me experiences; recognition of a passenger’s Frequent Flyer status via NFC card or phone, giving access to benefits or promotions, such as free Wi-Fi for Gold members; and pairing of NFC-enabled devices with the embedded IFEC system, allowing airlines to push information to passengers during their flight.

Apriva Announces mPOS Analytics

Apriva end-to-end wireless transactions, gateway services, and secure information solutions, expanded features within AprivaPay Plus POS software. AprivaPay Plus now delivers highly sophisticated analytics capabilities to brands, enhanced reporting features to merchants via an online web companion portal, iPhone 6/iOS8 compatibility and compliance with Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) regulations. M-commerce will be the dominant business model, with $516 billion in sales driving more than 70 percent of all mobile internet revenue by 2017. As the industry grows, enhanced analytics, functionality, broader language support, and robust reporting for both merchants and brands are becoming more critical. Brands using AprivaPay Plus as a white-labeled application will now be able to access detailed anonymized analytics on their brand’s user base including demographics, geo-location, user engagement statistics, device information and marketing data, allowing them to identify their precise user-base, tailor their application accordingly and drive future business via key performance indicators.

PAYware Ocius & PCI

VeriFone’s Payments as a Service (PaaS) platform for the UK market”PAYware Ocius”has been certified by the PCI Security Standards Council (SSC) as an approved Point-to-Point Encryption (P2PE) solution. PCI SSC certification validates PAYware Ocius’ ability to help merchants enhance security and reduce the scope of PCI Data Security Standard (DSS) management through P2PE of cardholder data.

MasterCard Advisors Shuffles Execs

MasterCard Advisors appointed Pierre Burret as Head of Delivery, Quality & Resource Management for Europe, Asia Pacific, Middle East & Africa and Eric Schneider as Region Business Lead for Asia Pacific. Burret will lead delivery, quality and resource management across three key regions (Europe, Asia Pacific, Middle East & Africa). In his new role, Burret will lead and develop the MasterCard Advisors’ consulting team to deliver business intelligence and provide solutions to financial institutions, merchants, governments and other organizations. Meanwhile Eric Schneider will serve as Region Head, who has moved from the U.S. where he served as group head and member of the MasterCard Advisors management team for the U.S. market. Schneider will be based in Singapore, and will oversee MasterCard Advisors’ market operations in the Asia Pacific region.

SmartStream Appoints Director, Professional Services

SmartStream Technologies announced the hire of Richard Nicholas as Director of Professional Services, Asia Pacific. Richard will be responsible for professional services and programme management across the region. Richard has been working in the Asia Pacific region for 15 years and brings with him over 20 years of financial services experience. Prior to joining SmartStream, he has held senior professional services and programme management positions at HSBC, ION Trading, Misys and Standard Chartered Bank.