Robert McKinley, Senior Analyst/Editor Robert McKinley, with 33 years experience covering payment cards and payment systems, is Senior Analyst/Editor for CardFlash and other payments-related publications. He is the retired founder and chief executive of RAM Research, CardWeb and CardTrak. McKinley served as an expert witness in 100+ litigations including two multi-$billion trials, testified before the U.S. Congress, chaired multiple payments conferences, hired as consultant by Fortune 100 companies and several overseas financial institutions. Full Bio:

Ifbyphone Launches PCI-Compliant IVR Solution

Ifbyphone, the leader in voice-based marketing automation, launched its new PCI-compliant IVR (interactive voice response) solution, providing direct response TV (DRTV) marketers with the most advanced and flexible solution for securely auto-processing phone orders. Unlike cumbersome legacy IVR products that are difficult and time-consuming to deploy and modify, Ifbyphone’s next-generation IVR can be quickly rolled out and easily updated, so DRTV marketers can optimize their efforts to maximize revenue. DRTV marketers rely on IVR technology to automate over-the-phone credit card payment processing and generate revenue with upsells and transfers. Ifbyphone’s cloud-based IVR remedy can be deployed in a fraction of the time of legacy IVR tools and gives DRTV marketers the ability to monitor IVR performance in real time, conduct A/B tests, and make IVR script and other changes to help generate greater revenue. It also offers real-time credit card authorization to verify each caller’s information before accepting a purchase and web-based reports with real-time data that provide deep insight into marketing performance.

First Data chooses HP Infrastructure for VisionPlus Flex

HP and First Data electronic commerce and payment processing announced that HP Converged Infrastructure will be the foundation for First Data’s VisionPlus Flex solution, which enables financial institutions to cost-effectively process payment portfolios of up to 10 million accounts. VisionPLUS Flex enables financial institutions to issue and process credit, debit, commercial and prepaid cards, as well as to address closed-end loan account processing on a single platform. Through this collaboration, First Data is now delivering VisionPLUS Flex in an appliance delivery model. With VisionPLUS Flex appliances, financial institutions can also lower the total cost of ownership, offer the ability to process payments in country and transform organizations’ existing IT platforms to support growing enterprise demands.

Cardtronics Acquires Merrimak ATM Group

[ihc-hide-content ihc_mb_type=”show” ihc_mb_who=”0″ ihc_mb_template=”1″] Cardtronics announced its wholly owned subsidiary, Cardtronics USA, Inc., has acquired the assets of Merrimak ATM Group, LLC. Based in Rohnert Park, Calif. and an independent ATM deployer since 1995, Merrimak ATM Group provides ATM services”primarily ATM sales, transaction processing and ATM managed services”to a nationwide fleet of 4,800 ATMs, consisting…

MCB POS network can now acquire Unionpay cards

Euronet Pakistan, a subsidiary of Euronet Worldwide announced it has successfully enabled acquiring of UnionPay cards on MCB Bank’s nationwide Point of Sale (POS) network. The service is enabled for MCB Bank through collaboration with UnionPay International (UPI) – a subsidiary of China Union Pay, which focuses on UnionPay’s international business. Union Pay International has an acceptance network in more than 140 countries and regions. With this acquiring service, MCB can accept UnionPay cards across its POS network, which includes 12,000 terminals across Pakistan. This new acquiring service will increase the bank’s revenue, as UnionPay cards in circulation worldwide have reached 3.5 Billion and it has the largest card holder groups in the world.

Diebold Names VP, South Asia

Diebold announced Karthik Ganapathi has been named vice president and managing director of the company’s South Asia region, which includes India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Nepal. Here he will continue to develop Diebold’s service organization in India while leveraging the company’s innovation in products, managed services and security solutions for long-term growth in the region. Prior to this position, Ganapathi served as vice-president, corporate strategic planning and development. Ganapathi holds a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Chicago in Chicago, Ill., a master’s of science degree in material science from the University of Missouri, and a bachelor’s degree in materials engineering from the National Institute of Technology in India.

Micropross ICTK Verifies EMVCo Contactless

Micropross is proud to announce that ICTK, the leading test laboratory dedicated to the smartcard industry, successfully passed the audit process from EMVCo aiming at enabling them to deliver certification of contactless devices following the EMVCo Level 1 analog specifications. The Micropross EMVCo validated Level 1 test bench is part of the Contactless Test Station, a revolutionary concept concentrating in one box which contains all elements necessary to perform ISO 10373-6, ISO 10373-7, ICAO, EMVCo, and NFC Forum analog, digital and applicative tests. This unique tool therefore satisfies the customer’s needs. Micropross is the only test tool provider on the market with such a wide coverage, so many validated solutions (EMVCo, NFC Forum, ICAO) and with the ability to provide all hardware and software elements from the same source.

Allied Payment Network Presents mBill Pay

Allied Payment Network online bill payment services to the financial industry is generating positive buzz around its innovative bill pay solution, Picture Pay mobile bill payment app allowing consumers to pay bills using the camera on their mobile device. FinovateSpring is a two-day showcase of the newest financial and banking technology innovations from leading established companies to young startups. This year’s spring event attracted more than 1,300 attendees, which the conference reports as the largest attendance to date. With Picture Pay, users take a picture of the bill, enter the amount and date, and the bill is paid. Picture Pay’s technology does the rest by reading the data from the bill, then syncing with the customer’s bank or credit union to process the payment.

Monitise Partners Blackhawk on mGift Cards

Blackhawk Network and Monitise mMoney solutions announced an agreement to make mobile gift card purchasing available to consumers through certain banks and financial institutions in the United States. Prepaid gift cards from Blackhawk Network’s popular GiftCardMall™ will be available to consumers for purchase from participating banks and payment companies’ mobile wallets, powered by Monitise. With this new relationship, Blackhawk’s extensive network will integrate into Monitise’s mobile banking ecosystem, making it easier for consumers to purchase Blackhawk gift cards from popular retail brands via mobile. The new partnership provides customers with access to gift cards on the go, making these purchases convenient, building loyalty with their preferred financial institutions, and opening the door to more innovative mobile offerings.

Think Finance to Host Underbanked Financial Services Forum

Think Finance online financial products that bridge the gap between payday loans and credit cards announced it will sponsor and host an Industry Innovation Session at the 8th Annual Underbanked Financial Services Forum on June 6 in Miami, Fl. The session, entitled “The Next Generation of Financial Consumers – Millennials, the I-Want-it-Now Generation,” will focus on the financial preferences and concerns of 18 to 34 year olds. Think Finance will unveil the findings of a new study conducted by Harris Interactive about Millennial attitudes, habits and aspirations around their personal finances. The event will also feature a panel of Millennials who will share their perspective on the findings and discuss what they really want from banks and other financial service providers when it comes to financial products, technology, customer service and more.

BBVA Compass Launches Picture Bill Pay

BBVA Compass expanded its iPhone app with Picture Bill Pay, allowing customers to pay bills and add payees by taking pictures of their paper bills with their iPhones. Picture Bill Pay captures the payee and payment details from the paper bill and automatically populates those fields in the BBVA Compass bill pay service for customer verification and scheduling. The new feature eliminates the need to manually type information to add payees and also cuts back on the likelihood of making a mistake when entering the details, Carriles said. BBVA Compass is one of the first banks to offer picture bill pay capabilities using Mitek System’s Mobile Photo Bill Pay.

PayLane Officially a Payment Institution

PayLane is officially a Payment Institution. It has been unanimously announced by the Polish Financial Supervision Authority, which is according the Payment Services Directive a competent authority of the host Member State. Obtaining the status of a Payment Institution was possible due to the Payment Services Directive (PSD, 2007/64/EC), a regulatory initiative of the European Commission. The directive regulates payment services and payment providers throughout the European Union and European Economic Area. What is important, this directive increases the competition in the payment industry, making non-banks almost on a par with regular banks. It also harmonizes consumer protection. Payment Institutions can receive deposits and make cash payments from a payment account, execute payment transactions, direct debits and credit transfers, and issue such payment instruments as credit cards.

Former Misys Execs Intro PFM Service

Moneythor is announcing its new personal finance service and underlying banking software components at Echelon 2013, Asia’s largest tech conference. The new solution is designed to help consumers better monitor their finances with secure, nonintrusive and proactive financial management functionality straight into their online banking sites. It also enables banks to significantly enhance their existing online services with no disruption. The solution is easily implemented into their infrastructure and will improve their customer insights and open up new revenue streams. Roll-out to other countries in the South-East Asia region as well as availability of additional components built for financial institutions is planned for later in the year.