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. www.robert-mckinley.com

SecureNet Names SVP, risk management

SecureNet has named Matt Odirakallumkal senior vice president of risk management. Here he will oversee the improvement of SecureNet’s merchant experience, including automated underwriting and boarding, and the simplifying of SecureNet’s online merchant application. He will also be responsible for increasing the speed at which new customers are onboarded. Matt will lead the underwriting and risk divisions at SecureNet.Matt has nearly 25 years of experience in the financial services and credit industries. In his previous role at Braintree, Matt led the development of the company’s underwriting and risk management strategy which included streamlined merchant boarding, establishment of underwriting/risk policies and procedures as well as the implementation their risk management system. He has served with Braintree and as director of US credit for Moneris Solutions.

Minnesota Twins Protest Credit Card Fees

The Minnesota Twins are suing Visa and MasterCard, alleging the associations gouge fan ticket purchases when they use their credit card. Alleging unfair, uncompetitive “swipe fees” hurt small merchants, cost jobs and raise the price of everything and can run as high as 4% of a purchase, the Team asserts these fees add up fast to around $50 billion a year for the banks, with profit margins of thousands of percent. Every merchant large and small in the country has to pay these fees because Visa and MasterCard control the vast majority of the market for credit and debit cards, according to the team. The Twins had joined thousands of merchants and service companies in suing Visa and MasterCard in a class-action lawsuit. But like many other companies, they dropped out and have now filed their own suit to end the anti-competitive abuses of the credit-card industry.

Aconite enables NFC

Aconite’s Smart EMV Manager system been interfaced to the Visa Mobile Gateway to enable the first mobile phone application for contactless payments in the Greek market. First Data Hellas selected Aconite’s Smart EMV Manager, which includes an EMV Scripting engine, to enable remote over-the-air management of the settings within the Visa mobile payWave EMV application installed in a custom SIM. Aconite solutions insulate banks and service providers from the complexity of the transition to mobile payments by making it a natural extension of their existing card issuing and management capabilities.

Cards on Demand

Card Cells unveils its latest extension, Card Cells Concierge, developed to help customers easily create custom plastic cards on-demand for gift cards, loyalty cards, membership cards, business cards and more. Card Cells Concierge provides custom plastic card printing, manufacturing and design for gift cards, loyalty cards, membership cards, business cards and more.

TSB Hits 2.2mm Card Issue Mark

TSB has rolled out 2.2 million new contactless debit cards increasing the number of TSB customers able to tap and go by almost five times. The Bank has already seen contactless spend rocket in June to nearly six times the amount spent on contactless cards in January and contactless taps by TSB customers also increased fourfold. This is due to more customers having contactless cards but also shows that more people are comfortable with making contactless payments. According to TSB data, the average contactless payment has been consistently between £6 and £7 over the past six months, with many using their contactless cards for smaller purchases.

International Q1 Credit Card GDV

International (excluding the USA) Gross Dollar Volume (GDV) for Visa (VS) and MasterCard (MC) credit cards rose 6.3% year-on-year (Y/Y) in the first quarter (Q1/14). MC’s growth in international credit cards GDV outpaced VS by 280 basis points (bps), according to CardData. During Q1/14 VS and MC produced $892 billion in international credit card GDV, compared to $968 billion in the prior quarter and $839 billion one-year ago.

Wallaby Financial Announces New SVP, Risk

Wallaby Financial mobile and web-based credit card optimization has named Scott Grimes as its Senior Vice President, Risk and Operations.He will oversee all risk, corporate compliance, data security, and operations for the fast growing financial services company. This newly created role is in response to Wallaby’s emergence as a leader in credit card optimization solutions. Mr. Grimes is a risk management professional with over twenty years experience in fraud, AML and compliance functions. He was previously Vice President, Risk Management at Green Dot Corporation from 2007 to 2013. Prior to joining Green Dot, Mr. Grimes also served in senior executive roles focused on risk and compliance at Target Corporation and Capital One Financial Corporation.

mopay Payment Solutions

mopay announced the signing of a global carrier billing deal with the leading Chinese mobile gaming company Chukong Technologies (“Chukong”). The Beijing-based company has decided to integrate mopay’s Android software development kit (SDK) solution as an essential element in the overall billing module for game developers worldwide. The mopay interface will serve as Chukong’s Android default solution for a consumer that wants to pay for digital goods and services via carrier billing.

Braintree Announces Dynamic SDK

Braintree v.zero SDK foundation for accepting payments is now available with customizable drop-in UI features across platforms, and for the first time enables Pay with PayPal. And though we’re offering so much more in our new v.zero SDK — we’ve made it even easier to integrate. With the new Braintree v.zero SDK, developers can set up payments and be up and running within 15 minutes (or less), while maintaining full control of their user experience. The Braintree v.zero SDK features Pay with PayPal options, a fully optimized Drop-in UI, and is built to stand the test of time – any future feature updates will be simple to add so businesses always have easy access to the best-in-class platform and latest features.

Aconite enables Greek NFC Payment Launch

Aconite’s Smart EMV Manager system been interfaced to the Visa Mobile Gateway to enable remote management of the EMV application at the heart of the Tap n Pay service – the first mobile phone application for contactless payments in the Greek market, introduced by one of Greece’s leading banks together with one of the world’s leading mobile network operators in partnership with Visa Europe and First Data.

BitFury Capital

BitFury Group, the leading Bitcoin infrastructure provider, announced it is launching “BitFury Capital”: a seed investment fund. The fund will leverage BitFury’s leading position in bitcoin and cryptocurrency infrastructure to accelerate other parts of the ecosystem through strategic partnerships, and expansion into adjacent business opportunities.