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

Parking Boxx Integrates EMV Payment Gateway

Parking BOXX announced today their partnership with CreditCall. Parking BOXX will use CreditCall’s EMV-ready payment gateway in the Parking BOXX gated, multi-space, pay-by-phone, cashier and citation parking systems. The systems will be installed across North America with sites already live. CreditCall’s industry-leading card payment solutions are available across multiple channels, including-Multi-Space, Pay-on-Foot, Smartphone and web-based parking in the UK, USA and Canada. The company processes credit and debit card payments securely from unattended parking machines, as well as from phone-based and online parking reservation systems.

Fime gets JCB contactless terminals accreditation

Fime is the first and only laboratory accredited to provide functional testing services for JCB’s new generation of contactless terminals. In addition to offering testing services to the marketplace on behalf of an international payment brand based in Japan, the JCB-approved EVAL test tool developed by FIME is also available for purchase from its network of international offices as an off-the-shelf product for in-house testing. FIME has been working with JCB as an accredited integration testing laboratory since the launch of JCB J/Smart, JCB’s EMV Programme in 2005.

TSB Deploys NCR to Update Its Retail Banking

NCR announced that TSB is installing 80 new NCR SelfServ ATMs in just three months across Britain as it transforms its retail banking network to improve banking services for its customers. Located in communities that range from Aberdeen to the Isle of Wight and Swansea to Norwich, the ATMs being installed by NCR will be free to use and available before the end of April 2014. For people wanting to ‘check their cash and dash’, TSB ATMs will enable them to check their balance, withdraw cash and manage their PIN. The ATMs also offer a host of other services, including bill payment, ordering of postal statements and mobile phone top-ups. SelfServ ATMs are designed to create a bigger visual impact on the street, and deliver a faster service and a more engaging experience for consumers. In the future, the contactless card capabilities will allow customers to carry out small transactions quickly and securely, thereby decreasing transaction time, cutting down queues and improving service. In addition, the new NCR SelfServ ATMs are Windows 7 ready – an important feature with Windows XP support from Microsoft expected to end in April 2014.

Moneris to accept UnionPay cards

Moneris Solutions and UnionPay International entered into an agreement regarding Moneris’ acceptance of UnionPay cards beginning later this year. The number of merchants accepting UnionPay cards in the global market has shown a tremendous increase, giving UnionPay cardholders at home and abroad a network of convenient card use. Moneris and UPI will significantly expand this network in Canada with Moneris’ enablement of UnionPay card acceptance. Moneris is expected to launch UnionPay card acceptance as part of its service offerings to merchants in fall 2014.

CARD FEE INCOME AS A % OF TOTAL INCOME REMAINS FLAT

In their series of weekly year-end card industry trend reports R.K. Hammer now discusses how fee income continues to perform in terms of top line revenue contribution. For decades, interest income on prime/super prime cards had always contributed the largest portion of the card industry’s revenue streams; just the exact opposite for subprime cards, though, where fees have always been the higher piece of total income. As reported earlier, the line between interest income and fee income for prime/super prime accounts has been narrowing substantially in recent years; with lower revenue in many cases coming from interest and an increasingly higher portion derived from fees. That trend continued again in 2013.

VerifyValid Turns iPhones into Checkbooks

In an effort to revamp the payments process for today’s businesses and consumers, VerifyValid, an innovator in providing electronic check payments for businesses, consumers, financial institutions and their customers, has launched its Mobile Checkbook app in the Apple App Store. The app provides consumers and businesses alike with a simple-to-use mobile payment channel that avoids card interchange fees and provides the security and convenience of checks. The Mobile Checkbook expands the VerifyValid portfolio, especially for small businesses and consumers, by making the checkbook the most portable form of payment available.

oti sells Intercard System Electronics

On Track Innovations Ltd. (oti) has sold its wholly owned German subsidiary, Intercard System Electronics GmbH, to a private party. Intercard manufactures electronic assemblies and devices, including oti’s NFC readers and other non-oti related products. The sale of Intercard includes an upfront payment of EUR 700,000 to oti and then future debt payments of certain amounts, as well as preferred pricing for Intercard services for the ongoing manufacturing of oti readers.

MasterCard Partnership Speeds NFC Development

At Mobile World Congress last week MasterCard announced a collaboration between Deutsche Telekom, Telefónica Deutschland, Vodafone and TREVICA (a MasterCard owned company) to create a new mobile platform and accelerate the development of mobile payments in Germany. The three mobile operators represent 80% of mobile customers in Germany, which means that banks and financial institutions can hugely accelerate their ability to provide mass- market mobile payment services to consumers. Instead of connecting to individual mobile operators, issuing banks can now connect to TREVICA and have access to a number of mobile operators with one single integration to the TREVICA platform.

Eaze introduces “Nod To Pay” service

Paying with “Nod To Pay” is truly frictionless. A Google Glass user activates the service with the command “OK Glass, make a payment”. Glass then scans the QR code of any Bitcoin enabled Point Of Sales (POS) application. The transaction details appear on the display of Glass. The user then only needs to nod twice to confirm the payment, making it a truly handsfree payment solution. To keep it safe, a “Nod To Pay” spending limit can easily be set, just like anyone would do with a normal wallet holding offline cash. Any transaction amount above that limit will require an additional security (PIN) code to confirm the payment.

paysafecard CEO Steps Down

Michael Mueller, co-founder and, for the last nine years, CEO of paysafecard group, has reached the decision to leave the board of the company at the end of February 2014. Udo Mueller will take over the position of CEO. Michael Mueller co-founded paysafecard group in 2000, with the aim of developing a safe and convenient prepaid method of payment for the Internet. The group, headquartered in Austria, became one of only a few leading internet and financial services companies globally, combining innovation with sustainable economic success. The company, whose main product, paysafecard, is available at 450,000 locations in 37 countries, currently employs approximately 200 employees and was acquired by the Skrill Group in 2013.

SAIB To Use NCR APTRA Interactive Tellers

Saudi Investment Bank (SAIB) will better serve customers with a number of new ATMs with video technology from NCR Corporation. NCR APTRA Interactive Teller will allow customers to complete over 95 percent of typical branch transactions right at the ATM, 24 hours a day, with the assistance of a live, remote teller. Configured with ‘scalable cheques processing module’ (SCPM), NCR APTRA Interactive Teller can accept and process cheques, while also enabling the remote teller to immediately cash cheques for customers from anywhere, at any time. As part of the agreement, NCR will provide software application development, system analysis, support services and related training programs.