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

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.

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.

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.

MoneyGram Services Available at Debenhams’ Department Stores

MoneyGram teamed iinternational department store Debenhams to offer money transfer services to its customers. Debenhams’ customers will now be able to send and receive funds around the globe while doing their shopping at the 200-year old retailer in the UK. MoneyGram services are currently offered at 44 Debenhams locations across the UK via its Travel Money bureaus, with further store expansion planned in the coming months. It is anticipated that the new service will be used by thousands of new customers who will enjoy sending from such locations. For a leading retailer like Debenhams, offering the MoneyGram service to millions of customers wanting to send money to family and friends abroad creates a useful one-stop-shop on the high street.

MoneyGram Announces Latest Agent Agreement

MoneyGram has signed an agreement with Qingdao Rural Commercial Bank (Qingdao RCB). Based in Qingdao, one of the largest cities in the Shangdong province of China, the agreement enables convenient money transfer service access for both urban and rural Qingdao residents, and foreign expatriates sending funds back home to family in Qingdao and nearby cities. Money transfer services are now available at all 330 Qingdao RCB locations. Formed in 2012, Qingdao Rural Commercial Bank was first established in 1951 as rural credit cooperative. The company is the fastest growing financial organization in Shangdong province and is a nationally recognized brand in China.

FISERV 2013

The top global provider of financial services technology solutions, Fiserv had an extremely busy 2013 with tons of new deals, product upgrades and new products. New products include ConnectedTeller, CorPoint Mobile, Biller Advantage, Model Management: Reporting, FATCA Manager, Mobiliti Tablet, and LoanComplete Delivery Manager. GAAP revenue for 2013 was $4.81 billion compared with $4.44 billion in 2012. Adjusted revenue was $4.55 billion for the full year compared with $4.15 billion in 2012, an increase of 10%. Here are 95 points of light in Fiserv’s 2013, presented by CardWeb.com

MasterCard 4Q/13 Net Revenue Up 12% Y/Y

[ihc-hide-content ihc_mb_type=”show” ihc_mb_who=”0″ ihc_mb_template=”1″] MasterCard Incorporated announced 4Q/13 financial results with a net income of $684 million, up 13%. A $61 million after-tax charge related to the opt-outs in the U.S. merchant litigations, the company reported net income of $623 million. Net revenue for 4Q/13 was $2.1 billion, a 12% increase versus the same period…

Fiserv, MasterCard Advance Debit EMV Adoption

Fiserv and MasterCard agreed to make MasterCard’s U.S. common debit EMV solution available for the Accel debit network. MasterCard issuers receive flexibility to select and implement network relationships, while merchants and acquirers will continue to route transactions as they prefer, without introducing multiple applications and complicated technology upgrades. MasterCard was the first network to offer its proprietary technology to other U.S. debit networks in an effort to support the migration to EMV and enable the routing of PIN debit transactions over multiple, unaffiliated networks. This decision allows acquirers to brand transactions originating from the Maestro AID (application identifier) for all debit networks that elect to participate. The MasterCard U.S. common debit EMV solution is consistent with the EMV Migration Forum’s recommendations, including a single common debit application identifier (AID) and single application on each card, as well as multiple ways to verify the cardholder’s identity.

ACI Worldwide Makes Real-Time, Any-to-Any Payments

ACI Worldwide unveiled the next generation of its consumer payments solution, enabling real-time, any-to-any payments. ACI is empowering financial institutions, retailers and billers to reduce payment processing costs, increase customer loyalty and drive new revenues by giving consumers more control over their money and the payment services they value. The company made the announcement at its Disruption in Payments events in New York and London. With the latest version of ACI’s market-leading consumer payments solution, UP BASE24-eps, as the enabling technology, real-time payments facilitate quick, secure, cost-effective and regulated transactions between consumers and retailers, financial institutions and billers. Industry experts believe that real-time payments will accelerate the global economy by eliminating billions of dollars in costs and generating billions of dollars in new revenues each year.

PayPal Appoints Director of Strategy

Rakesh “Rocky” Agrawal is joining PayPal. In 2013, PayPal processed more than $180 billion in transactions; that’s roughly equivalent to the GDP of New Zealand. Just as important is the response from close friends who work at PayPal as well as VCs. Rockey will help small businesses and entrepreneurs understand online commerce and payments. There is a lot of nuance in commerce that goes beyond just APIs and technical implementation. If you can show a customer how to reduce chargebacks or mitigate fraud and as a result that business is more successful, you become more successful. If you can teach a customer to market better and they sell more, you will be more successful. The best APIs and the prettiest interfaces don’t mean much if your customers are still struggling with the rapidly changing retail environment.

U.S. Bank Offers Visa Payment Controls

U.S. Bank is the first bank in the nation to offer Visa Payment Controls, which gives small business owners control over how, when and where their employees’ business credit cards are used. Visa Payment Controls lets small business owners manage how employees can use their cards based on Time of day or day of week, Geographical area, merchant type, and dollar amount. Controls can be applied or removed in real-time, giving business owners complete flexibility over managing their employee card usage.

Fiserv Announces Latest Digital Banking and Payments Client

Fiserv financial services technology announced that Finger Lakes Federal Credit Union (Finger Lakes FCU) enhanced its digital banking and payment capabilities through the addition of multiple solutions from Fiserv. These include Corillian Online® and Mobiliti™ for online and mobile banking, AllData® PFM for personal financial management, and CheckFree® RXP® and Popmoney® for bill payment and person-to-person (P2P) payments. Finger Lakes FCU, which is seeing increased use of its electronic channels, is using the new technology to position the credit union to grow in a competitive market. By offering both Corillian Online and Mobiliti, Finger Lakes FCU delivers a convenient, consistent experience across the online and mobile channels.