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.

Payza Announces EU Payment Partnership

Payza has formed a strategic relationship to provide credit and debit payment service to European Union merchants based on its highly successful, fully-featured Payza as a Platform enterprise solution. The company announced its Payza Merchant Gateway service in the U.S. last month. Payza as a Platform is currently being used in nearly every country around the world by over 75,000 merchants. The service offers highly competitive pricing, a wide range of supported payment methods, built-in security and fraud protection, strong merchant support, and a host of tools, features, and reporting options. Payza’s online payment platform also offers a recurring billing service for subscription based billing cycles, at no additional charge. The recurring billing feature has a variety of intervals and billing terms and is created at a product level so additional products can complement the basic subscription. Unlike other payment processors and merchant accounts that charge monthly, gateway and other service fees on top of transaction fees, the Payza Merchant Gateway only charges for the processed transactions.

Contactless Transactions Up 400% in 2013

Throughout 2013 Visa cardholders used their contactless cards to make more than 94.3 million purchases in the UK, simply by tapping their cards, compared to just under 25 million contactless purchases in 2012, showing that UK consumers are embracing the ease and speed of contactless payments. Contactless purchases were not just up in the UK but across the whole of Europe, with Visa cards used to make a staggering 340.1 million contactless purchases across Europe last year. The number of contactless terminals has also risen by almost 200% and independent retailers making contactless payments available to customers with the number of terminals now over 300k. The stats also show a massive 125% increase on the number of Visa contactless cards in circulation compared to December 2012 to now 32.1 million Visa contactless cards in circulation in the UK with the European total reaching 80.6 million, a 158% increase on 2012.

Shareight mCommerce Startup raises GBP600k

SHAREIGHT highlighted the growing importance of mobile commerce as an investment opportunity by raising £600,000 in 24 hours from over 240 investors through the equity crowd funding platform Seedrs. The round is currently in an overfunding period and is expected to exceed £600,000 (US $1,000,000) today. SHAREIGHT has set new records for the speed and amount raised on the platform – excluding Seedrs’s own campaign in 2013. SHAREIGHT was founded to overcome the challenges faced by consumers who want to shop via their smartphone to aggregate everything on the high street into one designed-for-mobile platform that provides easy-to-use browsing, shopping, saving, communicating and sharing of products.

APS CEO Chair the Mobile Money & Wallet Summit

Richard Wagner, CEO of Advanced Payment Solutions (APS) will chair the prestigious Mobile Money & Wallet Summit 2014, a two-day event in London on 18th and 19th March for the mobile money wallet ecosystem. The summit comes at a time when big questions are being asked about the future of mobile technology in money and banking. With the near-collapse and scandal surrounding the crypto-currency BitCoin, and a huge rise in contactless payment systems, the mobile payments’ industry now faces tough questions and challenges. APS has recently been recognised as one of the London Stock Exchange’s 1,000 companies to inspire Britain. In ten years, Richard has built APS up to be one of the most awarded electronic banking providers in Europe providing smart, fast, digital and mobile solutions which make it simple to send and receive payments.

Thinfilm and Xerox Principal NFC Forum Members

The NFC Forum announced that Thinfilm and Xerox Corporation have joined the NFC Forum at the Principal level. The first to commercialize printed rewritable memory, Thinfilm is creating printed system products that will include memory, sensing, display and wireless communication such as NFC -at a cost-per-functionality unmatched by any other electronic technology. Since the invention of Xerography more than 75 years ago, the people of Xerox have helped businesses simplify the way work gets done. Today, Xerox is the global leader in business process and document management, helping organizations of any size be more efficient so they can focus on their real business. Headquartered in Norwalk, Conn., more than 140,000 Xerox employees serve clients in 160 countries, providing business services, printing equipment and software for commercial and government organizations. The Principal level is the next-to-top tier of NFC Forum membership, and it includes significant participation opportunities.

First Data and IBC Renew Merchant Acquiring Contract

First Data and International Bank of Commerce (IBC), announced that the companies signed a long-term extension for merchant services and payment solutions. IBC has been a partner since 2004 and First Data will continue to provide innovative business solutions to enable the bank’s clients to accept all forms of payments and grow their businesses. First Data will provide dynamic solutions throughout the IBC footprint and advance clients to a new era of payments using a consultative approach.

Cardtronics & BBVA Compass Ink ATM-branding Deal

Cardtronics announced a licensing agreement with BBVA Compass, providing the bank branding rights to more than 300 ATMs in H-E-B stores. The deal equates to a nearly 50% jump in the bank’s Texas ATM network, bringing its total to nearly 1,000 machines. The deal provides the bank with potential access to shoppers at more than 300 H-E-B operated stores. The agreement between Cardtronics and BBVA Compass is part of a growing relationship established in 2012. Prior to this H-E-B announcement, BBVA Compass had branded 268 Cardtronics-owned ATMs in convenience and grocery stores throughout Colorado and Texas.

First Data Shows February Weather Hinders Consumer Spending

[ihc-hide-content ihc_mb_type=”show” ihc_mb_who=”0″ ihc_mb_template=”1″] First Data released its First Data SpendTrend analysis for Feb. 1, 2014, through Feb. 28, 2014, tracking same-store POS data by credit, signature debit, PIN debit, EBT, closed-loop prepaid cards and checks. It showed dollar volume growth remained positive at 2.4%, but marked a slight slowdown versus January’s 2.5% growth as…

Money Dashboard goes mobile

Money Dashboard announced the availability of the mobile edition of its popular free service smart account aggregation service that automatically analyses spending across accounts to help people better understand their finances and manage their money. The mobile edition of Money Dashboard has been specifically designed to provide users with a streamlined interface, which makes accessing your personal financial information ‘on-the-go’ easier and clearer than ever before. The launch of the mobile site is a key part of a larger growth strategy from a £2.7 million investment round in November 2013. This is the first phase in Money Dashboard’s wider mobile strategy that will see native Android and iOS apps launched over the coming months. Additional features will also be launched in the near future, building an even more powerful tool for smart account management, yet retaining its core easy to use and understand philosophy.

Paysafecard claims strong full year revenue growth Wertkarten AG continued the success of previous years by achieving record results in 2013. This further establishes the company’s position as the European market leader for prepaid solutions for online payments, and showcases paysafecard as one of Austria’s globally successful companies. Last year’s total turnover of €116.4 million is the highest in the history of paysafecard, and represents an increase of 13% on the previous year’s turnover. paysafecard products were used for 68 million payment transactions around the world in 2013 – a year on year increase of 23%. A significant step taken in 2013 was the launch of the online payment account my paysafecard in 22 countries. With my paysafecard, paysafecard allows users to manage their purchased PINs via a single account. This gives users the best possible overview of their current balance and past transactions, as well as allowing them to pay online simply and easily with only a username and password.

Ingenico Annouces Latest Payment Terminal Client

Ingenico announced the deployment of an innovative fiscal solution, along with its local partner Etranet Group, for Hrvatski Telekom telecommunication services. Further to the implementation of a fiscal law in Croatia, Ingenico in partnership with Etranet group (Croatian specialist in electronic payment transaction systems) and Hrvatski Telekom developed an innovative all-in-one cash register solution combining Ingenico latest generation of payment terminals with fiscal application developed by Etranet Group to equip Hrvatski Telekom customers. The solution is based on Ingenico’s range of wireless and countertop terminals (IWL220 GSM & GPRS and ICT220 GPRS). Thanks to Ingenico’s secure software application, tax information is easily transmitted to Croatian tax administration.