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.

EPC Set to Host Cross-Border BIC-to-Iban workshop

The ‘International Bank Account Number (IBAN) only’ rule introduced on the basis of Article 5 (7) of the European Union (EU) ‘Regulation (EU) No 260/2012 establishing technical and business requirements for credit transfers and direct debits in euro’ adopted by the EU legislator in February 2012 prohibits payment service providers (PSPs) to require that payment service users (PSUs) provide the Business Identifier Code (BIC). Article 5 (7) states: “After 1 February 2014 for national payment transactions and after 1 February 2016 for cross-border payment transactions, PSPs shall not require PSUs to indicate the BIC of the PSP of a payer or of the PSP of a payee.” PSPs however, will have to continue to indicate the BIC of the account to be debited or credited when processing a Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA) payment transaction in the interbank space. The EPC intends to host a workshop on 24 September 2013 in Brussels to initiate a dialogue on the minimum requirements for cross-border ‘BIC from IBAN derivation’ solutions.

Opus Bank Appoints EVP, Chief Operating Officer

Opus Bank announced that Romolo “Ron” Santarosa has joined Opus Bank and has been appointed Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer, and a member of Opus Bank’s Executive Committee. As the Bank’s Chief Operating Officer, Mr. Santarosa is responsible for leading, managing, and directing the operational and support functions of Opus Bank, including Banking Operations, Information Technology, Project Management, Corporate Real Estate, and Vendor Management and Procurement, as well as being responsible for acquisition integration, and process improvement and efficiency management. Mr. Santarosa, a 22-year banking veteran, joins Opus Bank most recently from First California Financial Group and its bank subsidiary First California Bank (together “FCAL”), where he served as Senior Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer. Mr. Santarosa is a graduate cum laude of Ithaca College and a member of American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, and the California State Society of CPAs.

InstaLoan & FactorTrust Partner on Consumer Credit Options

FactorTrust underbanked consumer data, analytics and risk scoring solutions on those underserved by traditional banking channels announces a new relationship with InstaLoan, one of the fastest growing consumer loan companies in the U.S. Utilizing FactorTrust’s proprietary data and custom scoring models, InstaLoan can now better qualify customers, providing each individual with the best, most customized type of loan for their personal situation. FactorTrust has been providing alternative credit data, analytics and risk management solutions regarding consumers that lack traditional credit options for short-term lenders since 2005. The company has millions of data points on this consumer segment and works with its customers to provide instant and informed lending decisions utilizing its comprehensive scoring platform.

The Mobile App Market Slated at $27B by 2014

ABI Research projects the mobile app market will value at $27 billion in 2013, as mobile apps continue to be a critical factor in the battle between the mobile OS. BlackBerry and Windows are slowly augmenting their apps catalogue as they compete for the 3rd ecosystem, but are still far behind Apple and Android. An interesting aspect of the mobile app market is revenues generated by smartphone versus tablets. App revenues generated from smartphones have significantly dwarfed app revenues from tablets. However, tablet revenues are quickly catching up and it is projected tablet app revenues will overtake smartphones by 2017. The inclination for tablet users to pay more for apps than their smartphones because of the larger screen size and better user experience for gaming and reading are the primary drivers.

MPR Drops Significantly from April Figure

[ihc-hide-content ihc_mb_type=”show” ihc_mb_who=”0″ ihc_mb_template=”1″] Fitch’s May Monthly Payment Rate(MPR) Index continues to sit above the 20% mark, currently at 23.52%. Up over 10% since the year ago period and down nearly 4% from the April figure, MPR has consistently remained well above the historical average of 16.55% since 2009. MPR, which measures how quickly cardholders…

Access Prepaid Worldwide Launches British Airways Cash Passport

MasterCard subsidiary, Access Prepaid Worldwide announces a new partnership with British Airways to launch a new Executive Club Multi-currency Cash Passport. The partnership will allow British Airways Executive Club members to earn more Avios points, receiving one Avios point for every £1 loaded (or reloaded) onto the card. The travel card, which is available now, offers a more convenient way to make payments for Executive Club members who travel to different countries as only one card is needed for payment across certain continents and currencies. The Executive Club Multi-currency Cash Passport™ card works with the option to load up to seven currencies while locking in the exchange rate at a point in time. When used in market, the card intelligently selects the local currency to ensure the best rate. If the local currency is not on the card, funds are used from other currencies loaded to ensure the transaction is approved. The chip and PIN enabled BA Executive Club Multi-currency Cash Passport™ will hold seven currencies; EUR, GBP, USD, AUD, CAD, NZD, and ZAR.

Telefónica-MasterCard JV Deploys Gemalto EMV

Gemalto will supply prepaid EMV payment cards to Mobile Financial Services (MFS), the joint venture formed by Telefónica and MasterCard Worldwide. The launch is part of “Zuum”, a new payment service offered by Telefónica’s Vivo brand which aims to provide financial inclusion for the unbanked population of Brazil. Gemalto will also provide MFS with all the personalization services associated with EMV prepaid cards as well as tamper evident packaging and fulfillment to point-of-sale. Nearly 40 percent of Brazilians currently do not use banking services1. With “Zuum”, Telefónica’s Vivo customers will be able to set up a pre-paid account which can be accessed either through their mobile phone or a regular prepaid EMV MasterCard payment card, provided by Gemalto. “Zuum” will allow people to make secure, convenient financial transactions including peer-to-peer money transfers, merchant purchases, ATM cash withdrawal, bill payment, airtime top-ups and more.

Vietin Bank Implements Yalamanchili Virtual Prepaid Processing

Vietin Bank has chosen global payments solutions provider, Yalamanchili to provide the payment processing software behind its recently launched prepaid card, which, for the first time, enables consumers and businesses in Vietnam to make secure online purchases from any website that accepts Visa. The virtual ‘E-Fast On Visa Prepaid Card’ has been developed to meet a growing demand for a simple, secure and convenient way to pay for goods and services online from around the world. The ‘E-Fast On Visa Prepaid Card’, a one-time-load virtual card that can be purchased from the Vietin Bank website, answers this need. Consumers purchase the virtual card online using their existing credit or debit card, load it with their desired amount and can then make secure purchases via international websites, up to the value of the card. Vietin Bank’s virtual prepaid card is now available to a large percentage of the banking population in the country.

ICICI Bank UK Intros eRemittance Solution

ICICI Bank UK announced the launch of a HiSAVE Remittance Account – an online savings account designed specifically for money transfers to India. HiSAVE is ICICI Bank UK PLC’s award winning range of online savings accounts and the new HiSAVE Remittance Account now joins this portfolio. This easy-access account offers the dual-benefit of far more convenient money transfers to India along with the opportunity to earn interest on the balance maintained. HiSAVE Remittance Account holders will earn 1.50% interest on any balance maintained in the account. They will also have the option to set a “Rate Block” on transfers to India, which means that customers can set a minimum exchange rate at which to transfer and ICICI Bank will ensure that money is sent only at that exchange rate or higher.

GfK Debuts mSolutions, Shares Perspectives on Big Data

GfK will be debuting cutting-edge solutions and perspectives on key topics facing today’s marketers and researchers at the ESOMAR 3D Digital Dimensions conference and related events. Tom Dailey (COO, GfK Consumer Choices North America) will describe the potential uses of location and mobile data to help retailers and others make wise business decisions. He will also introduce a new product in which GfK makes judicious use of this data to provide insights for marketers while respecting consumer privacy. Also, David Krajicek (CEO, GfK Consumer Experiences North America) will present a vision of how researchers can turn Big Data into Smart Data by adding expertise and business knowledge. This presentation demonstrates the potential for a fundamental shift in how consumers and companies alike access and leverage data.

Retail Velocity Taps Direct POS Data Sharing Database

Retail Velocity signal management and retail execution announced the expansion of their Velocity POS Data Sharing Knowledgebase. Designed to educate the CPG manufacturer community on the availability of direct POS (or ePOS) from over 300 retailers and distributors, registered visitors to the Retail Velocity website can quickly identify what type data each Retailer makes available to their manufacturer partners. Velocity® ( is an enterprise Demand Signal Repository (DSR) that delivers retail insights and in-store visibility providing a single source of “Big Data” analytics for consumer goods manufacturers to drive their sell-through and profitability at the store, item and SKU level. Velocity provides actionable insights to all areas of the manufacturer including C-Level suite, category management, sales, market research, customer logistics, finance, merchandising and demand planning.