On April 4, 2018, predictive intelligence firm 7.ai, which serves major global brands, released a statement that it had notified clients of an incident potentially affecting the online customer payment information of said client companies, which began Sept. 26, 2017 and was discovered and contained on Oct. 12, 2017. Clients notified that have since come forward in public statements include Best Buy, Delta Air Lines, Kmart and Sears.
A Florida man was sentenced to 108 months in federal prison for possession of device making equipment. Government investigators found that Alejandro Arias-Perez led a nationwide scheme that involved installing skimmers into gas pumps to steal credit card information and providing those numbers to individuals who produced fraudulent credit cards that were given to individuals who purchased merchandise which was sent to him.
Global blockchain payments provider BitPay closed a $40 million extended Series B funding round. New investors included Menlo Ventures, G Squared and Nimble Ventures, among others. "BitPay had a record 2017 as we processed over $1 billion in bitcoin payments," said Stephen Pair, BitPay CEO. "We brought on these new investors who can help BitPay scale globally to meet customer demand."
Global gateway and merchant services provider Constellation Payments Inc. was honored for the second consecutive year as one of the fastest-growing partners during Elavon's 2017 Merchant Services Provider (MSP) Conference. Constellation ranked second in the Northeast Region for the highest number of merchant account activations, the firm noted.
E la Carte, a restaurant ecommerce and payment technology provider, is now doing business as Presto. The name, which means "fast" in Italian, better represents the ideals to which the business aspires, the firm noted. "We've evolved tremendously since we were founded out of MIT in 2008, and we have decided the time is right for a consistent name for both our company and our product – Presto," said Presto CEO and founder Rajat Suri.
The Nilson Report ranked First American Payment Systems L.P. among the top 20 in its 2018 annual ranking of the largest U.S. merchant acquirers. FAPS jumped from No. 21 last year to No. 17. In 2017, FAPS processed more than $23 billion in transactions, representing over 220,000 merchants and 276 million transactions, the company noted, adding that it has focused on technology and support of independent software vendors.
LLR Partners closed a $30 million minority growth equity investment in Midigator LLC, a firm that offers a fully automated software platform designed to prevent, analyze and manage payment card chargebacks to mitigate costs. Midigator founder and CEO Corey Baggett said, "This partnership is another step towards our goal of becoming the global standard for chargeback management and fraud mitigation."
Mobey Forum, a global industry association supporting banking and financial institution digital financial service initiatives, formed an expert group to explore Internet of Things (IoT) opportunities to enhance delivery of financial services. "The IoT Expert Group will help banks and financial institutions prepare for the transformative impact of IoT by defining the ecosystem, examining possible use-cases and exploring potential business models for a variety of stakeholders," the forum stated.
ThreatMetrix's Reed Taussig was named CEO of the Year by One World Identity (OWI), an independent strategy and research company. This follows OWI's appointment of Taussig to its Top 100 Influencers in Identity 2018. ThreatMetrix also won the People's Choice Award at the MRC Technology Awards, which recognize solution providers making significant contributions in the fraud, risk and payments space.
USAePay now integrates with Castles Technology Co. Ltd.'s MP200L mobile payment terminal as a reseller option. "The MP200L will be a game changer for our merchant base," said Martin Drake, President of USAePay. "With its extended battery technology and touch screen capability, it will allow merchants to extend their processing reach, yet the unit will still remain very affordable for the small to medium-sized merchant."
Online discount gift card provider Gift Card Granny surveyed over 3,000 U.S.-based members about saving and spending trends. Forty-one percent of respondents search for coupons or money-saving offers in advance of making purchases; 69 percent only view store websites or emails for coupons and promotions; 77 percent own rewards credit cards with 40 percent earning up to 5 percent cash back; and only 27 percent expressed satisfaction with their saving efforts.
Global finance executives remain optimistic about economic growth for the year ahead, based on the 2018 Global Business & Spending Outlook survey by American Express Co. and Institutional Investor Thought Leadership Studio. Eighty-five percent of global respondents anticipate substantial or modest economic expansion in 2018 (up from 70 percent in 2017), 54 percent reported higher revenues over the past 12 months, and 21 percent project substantial expansion compared to 38 percent a year ago.
A Kabbage Inc. analysis of lending behavior by nearly 150,000 small businesses and uncovered increasing growth in mobile lending. The total number of loans accessed through mobile means increased by more than 360 percent between April 2014 and February 2018; in the same period, the total dollars accessed through mobile increased over 1,220 percent, Kabbage found. It predicted one of every five dollars funded to small businesses will be through a mobile device by the end of 2018.
Juniper Research Ltd. research determined the wearables market has begun to shift away from wrist-based devices, such as smartwatches and fitness trackers. In a white paper Where Now for Wearables?, Juniper ranked the fastest growing wearable sectors by projected compound annual growth in shipments over the next two years as follows: connected clothing, 102 percent; smart glasses, 98 percent; smart jewelry, 55 percent; hearables, 31 percent; and smartwatches, 31 percent.
Amsterdam-based omnichannel payments provider Acapture, a Payvision affiliate, teamed with San Francisco-based machine learning fraud protection firm Sift Science to help online merchants maximize revenue via one platform. "Acapture’s data and our machine learning models will drive business growth by reducing fraud, false positives, and operational costs," said Sift Science CEO Jason Tan.
Aliant Payment Systems, a provider of merchant services and payment processing, entered an agreement with the nonprofit Litecoin Foundation, making it the first payment processor to complete the Litecoin registration process. According to Aliant, the foundation can now provide merchants seeking cryptocurrency payments with a vetted processor offering cryptocurrency capabilities in ecommerce, retail and mobile spaces.
Fiserv Inc. revealed that retail ATM manufacturers, including Nautilus Hyosung America, Genmega Inc. and Triton Systems LLC, now support its cashless ATM product. "CardFree Cash from Fiserv enables ATM operators to satisfy the growing demand for secure, immediate cash disbursement across a range of P2P, B2C and self-service environments," said David Keenan, Senior Vice President, Product Management, Card Services at Fiserv.
Bluefin Payment Systems LLC partnered with Phreesia, a software-as-a-service-based patient intake management provider, to offer Bluefin's PCI-validated point-to-point encryption (P2PE) solution to Phreesia clients. "Healthcare organizations are a lucrative target for cyber criminals," said Greg Cornwell, Senior Vice President of Security Solutions at Bluefin. "Now more than ever, securing patient information is important, and organizations like Phreesia understand the need to offer their clients PCI-validated P2PE.
FreedomPay Inc. and global restaurateur HMSHost partnered to deploy FreedomPay's Commerce Platform in HMS airport and motorway travel plaza locations in the United States and Canada. The platform's fully validated P2PE layer secures cardholder data and supports EMV (Europay, Mastercard and Visa) and mobile wallet payments, in addition to self-service kiosk and pay-at-the-table options, the partners noted.
National Australia Bank Ltd. (NAB) launched Ingenico Group's web app Marketplace. NAB merchants can now select and purchase web apps to enhance business and customer checkout experiences. "We are pleased that NAB has chosen our Marketplace solution, allowing them to manage both payment and business applications on our smart POS and enhancing NAB's product offering to merchants," said Salvatore Ridulfo, Banks and Acquirers Managing Director for Ingenico Australia.
North American Bancard Holdings LLC teamed with Mediaplanet, an independent publisher of content-marketing campaigns, to distribute the second cross-platform edition of Future of Retail, an educational guidebook for modern retailers. Featured thought leaders in the series include NAB CEO Marc Gardner with a discussion on integrated payment technologies that optimize the customer shopping experience.
ScholarChip Card LLP, a provider of automated school safety and operations services, and SchoolPay, a K12 enterprise payment solution created by My Payment Network Inc., will offer a co-marketed integrated solution. As agreed, ScholarChip's POS platform will integrate SchoolPay's payment gateway to load/re-load prepaid cafeteria balances, update account transactions, and set balance alerts for low balances and other issues.
Cloud payments and POS platform provider ShopKeep and ProPay Inc., a TSYS company, formed a partnership by which ProPay will manage payment processing via its payment facilitator service for ShopKeep merchants who opt to self-serve onto its platform. According to ShopKeep, on-boarding customers on a payment facilitator platform significantly streamlines the payments sign-up and enrollment processes.
Global private equity firm Advent International Corp. completed the acquisition of a majority stake in Clearent LLC, a full-service payments provider, and acquired FieldEdge, a field service management software provider. Advent merged FieldEdge with Clearent, and will own a majority stake in the combined entity. FieldEdge will retain its brand and operate as an independent subsidiary of Clearent.
Global Legal Law Firm merged with the Ghilezan Law Firm and will operate as Global Legal Law Firm. The merger is expected to create a more comprehensive infrastructure, reduce response times and expand areas of legal expertise. "This is a merger of two highly compatible firms," Global Legal representatives stated. "Our companies have worked together for years, and we are longtime personal friends. We hold similar values and philosophies on doing business, producing an excellent result for the client."
NACHA – The Electronic Payments Association and the Interactive Financial eXchange Forum completed a merger, whereby IFX Forum will operate as an independent entity under NACHA, which is expected to accelerate development of standardized application programming interfaces (APIs). "The combination agreement allows NACHA and IFX Forum to align the API development priorities of NACHA's API Standardization Industry Group (ASIG) and the IFX Open Banking APIs Working Group," the organizations said.
Net Element Inc. appointed Jonathan Fichman to its board of directors. He will serve on the company's audit, nominating and governance, and compensation committees. Net Element noted that Fichman, whose experience encompasses fintech, payments, blockchain, wealth management and banking, brings more than 20 years of strategic domestic and international finance expertise to the board.
Self Point Ltd., a digital commerce partner for supermarkets and specialty food retailers, appointed Michael J. Haaf as CEO. With prior leadership roles at Lucky Supermarkets, Food Lion LLC and Office Depot Inc., in his new role he will guide strategic initiatives that support food retailers' targeted offer and online shopping programs. Haaf, who joined Self Point's board of directors in 2017, will remain on the company's board.
SaaS shopping app platform provider Shopgate Inc. appointed Michael (Mike) Haze as Vice President of Strategy and Solutions. Haze will guide further development of Shopgate's mobile shopping app platform for enterprise retail clients. Haze previously served as Vice President of Commerce Strategy and Solutions at Kibo Commerce, where he led the solution engineering team and integrated suite solution strategy efforts.
Steve Pinado joined Billtrust as President, where he will oversee the strategic direction of sales, marketing, business development and customer success. Prior to Billtrust, he served as Group CEO at Jonas Software. Pinado brings over 20 years' experience in payment-enabled software applications, financial technologies, corporate strategy, finance, business and organizational development, and mergers and acquisitions.
Cloud-based omnichannel commerce platform provider Kibo selected David Post as its new CEO. He brings two decades of experience in the high-technology and software space across a number of vertical industries, including transportation and logistics, real estate and healthcare, Kibo stated, adding that under Post's leadership, Kibo is poised for its next cycle of growth with new customer launches and product innovations.
Shift4 Payments LLC named hospitality industry veterans Michael Russo as Chief Development Officer and Daniel Drasin as Executive Vice President of Development. "We are very excited to have Michael and Daniel join the Shift4 team," said Shift4 CEO Jared Isaacman. "They were driving forces behind the successful development of MICROS Systems for many years, and their experience in the industry will be invaluable as we continue to innovate our own POS systems and other technology solutions."
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