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

Global Cash Access 4Q/12 Revenues Take Hit

[ihc-hide-content ihc_mb_type=”show” ihc_mb_who=”0″ ihc_mb_template=”1″] Global Cash Access posted its 4Q and FY/12, consistent with projections. With 4Q/12 revenues of $136.1 million, down from the year ago figure of $137.7 million, operating income was $9.7 million, also down from the year ago figure by 32% from $14.2 million. Adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization…

MoneyGram Warns Against Charity Scams

MoneyGram global money transfer is warning consumers who are in a giving mood not to get taken by a charity scam, disclosing victims lost an average of $824 each time they sent money intended for a non-profit organization. The charity scam occurs when a fraudster asks a victim to donate to a particular cause or organization. The organization may sound similar to a legitimate charity, and may even have a fake website made to look like an organization’s official site. Red flags include when the name of the organization is similar to a well-known charity, but is slightly off or if the caller needs an immediate answer and asks you to donate without taking the time to do any research into the cause or organization, especially if they only accept cash and can’t answer very many questions about their “organization.”

Barclays Launches Exchange Traded Note

Barclays Bank launched Barclays ETN+ Select MLP Exchange Traded Note (“ETN”) on the NYSE Arca stock exchange under the ticker symbol ATMP. The ETN is designed to provide investors with exposure to a basket of midstream US master limited partnerships (“MLPs”), limited liability companies (“LLCs”) and corporations by tracking the volume weighted average price (“VWAP”) of the Atlantic Trust Select MLP Index (the “Index”). Additionally, the Index will also provide exposure to general partners of US MLPs in Canada. Barclays ETN+ ETNs are senior, unsecured, unsubordinated debt securities issued by Barclays Bank PLC. Barclays Bank PLC is the issuer of Barclays ETN+ ETNs and Barclays Capital Inc. is the issuer’s agent.

Ameri-Source Inks Promo Agreement with USA Technologies

USA Technologies announced a 3-year agreement with Ameri-Source purchasing management company. Consisting of approximately 475 vending companies located throughout the United States, Ameri-Source is now an endorser and promoter of USAT’s cashless payment and telemetry solutions to Ameri-Source members. The Company will endorse and promote USAT’s “ePort” technology and “ePort Connect” service to its members and Ameri-Source members will be eligible to receive preferred pricing terms outlined in the agreement.

Nowcom and PayPros Offer Payments to DealerCenter

Nowcom Corporation and PayPros are pleased to announce new integrated payments functionality within DealerCenter. The payments solution by PayPros, the industry leader for integrated payment processing, and Nowcom, the leading automotive dealer management solution provider for the independent dealer, will allow dealerships to run their entire operations from a single program. DealerCenter is a full-featured automotive dealer solution, enabling these businesses to manage, sell and advertise vehicle inventory. PayPros allows credit, debit and electronic check (ACH) transactions via a hosted, secure online payments site accessible within the DealerCenter software.

Net Element International to Acquire Unified Payments

Net Element International, a technology-driven group specializing in electronic commerce and mobile payment processing, and Unified Payments, a leading provider of transaction processing services and payment-enabling technologies have entered a binding term sheet. With this, Net Element International will acquire Unified Payments and operate it through its newly formed subsidiary and holding company. This is expected to position and diversify Net Element International’s TOT Money business and expand its global presence in the payments market. Net Element International plans to aggressively begin deploying Unified Payments’ products and services in Russia and other emerging markets, while Unified Payments provides a strong foundation of recurring revenues in the U.S. The terms of the proposed acquisition are disclosed in Net Element International’s Form 8-K filed with the SEC.

First Data February Analysis Shows Waning Spending

[ihc-hide-content ihc_mb_type=”show” ihc_mb_who=”0″ ihc_mb_template=”1″] First Data released its “SpendTrend” analysis for the full month of February 2013. Tracking same-store consumer spending by credit, signature debit, PIN debit, EBT, closed-loop prepaid cards and checks at U.S. merchant locations, the February “Spendtrend” indicated dollar volume growth slowed to 4.6% Y/Y from January’s 6.2%. Coincidentally, transaction growth slipped…

VeriFone Announces Leadership Changes

The Board of Directors of VeriFone Systems announced that Douglas G. Bergeron is stepping down as CEO. Taking his place is Richard McGinn, Chairman and member of the Board of Directors. In McGinn’s place as interim Chairman is Leslie Denend. McGinn has served as a director of VeriFone since 2008 and as Chairman since 2012. He also serves as a member of the board of directors of American Express Co. Les Denend has served as a director of VeriFone since 2005 and is chair of the Company’s Compensation Committee and also serves on the Audit Committee. The Board also formed a search committee to evaluate candidates, headed by Alex W. (Pete) Hart.

FICO and FactorTrust Team, Help Lenders Serve Underbanked

FactorTrust underbanked consumer data, analytics and risk scoring solutions announced a joint initiative with FICO predictive analytics and decision management technology. The companies plan to work together to develop new credit risk assessment models for lenders looking to better serve underbanked consumers. With the addition of FactorTrust’s alternative data to the risk assessment, lenders will be able to assess the risk of consumers who may have a thin credit bureau file, or none at all – potentially leading to greater access to credit for the underbanked segment of the population. The FactorTrust database of underbanked consumer loan performance uses best-in-class third-party data sources and contains more than 100 million distinct transaction records covering all phases of the consumer credit lifecycle, updated in real-time.

Union Bank Deploys Fiserv ePayment Platform

Fiserv financial services technology announced Union Bank has deployed its “CheckFree RXP” electronic bill delivery and payment for online and m-banking. The “CheckFree RXP” platform leverages the Fiserv biller network to enable electronic bill payment, connecting thousands of businesses to financial institutions and consumers. Its “Payment Assistant” feature allows Union Bank customers to receive, view and pay all their bills in one place. Customers will retain control over the payment process by choosing the date they want their bill to be paid from an interactive calendar. Customers will also enjoy faster payment delivery, as most payments made via CheckFree RXP can be delivered the next business day or the same day.

Western Union Introduces Two Mobile App Payment Solutions

Western Union global payment services launched its Speedpay mpayment service to assist billers in introducing mobile payment solutions to their customers. The Speedpay Mobile Payment App can help companies in financial services, mortgage, insurance, cable, telecommunications and other industries meet evolving consumer bill payment preferences. Upon biller implementation of the Western Union mobile solution, consumers can access enhanced payment capabilities by downloading the biller-branded app from the various online locations and app stores where billers make their apps available. Western Union Payments also introduced its mobile app offering, specifically designed for billers in the utility industry, allowing utility companies to provide their customers with the ability to view and pay bills, monitor usage, and track and report outages via their mobile devices.

ACI Completes ORC Acquisition

ACI Worldwide payment systems completed its acquisition of Online Resources Corporation online banking and full service bill pay solutions in an all cash transaction for $3.85 per share. The acquisition adds Electronic Bill Presentment and Payment (EBPP) solutions as a strategic part of ACI’s Universal Payments portfolio and strengthens ACI’s online banking capabilities with complementary technology, and expands the company’s leadership in serving community banking and credit union customers. With this, ACI is committed to maintaining multi-year roadmaps and contractual commitments to Online Resources’ customers.