• FedNow Community Town Hall - Specifications Update

    On May 4, 2021, FedNow Community leaders hosted a 90-minute webinar to share FedNow Service key developments and plans for work and event opportunities in 2021.  #FasterPayments #FedNow
  • Young B2B FinTechs Secure Their Seed Rounds — PYMNTS

    While 2021 has kicked off with a bang in the venture capital arena — with several high-value investments on the books — this week's B2B VC roundup is all about the seed rounds. Young B2B FinTechs secured some of their first investments in areas that include small business accounting, alternative lending and financial management. But the leader of the pack goes to one corporate travel and expense management startup that impressed investors despite a business trip slump.
  • Worldpay: Pandemic Has Forced The Issue On B2B Automation — PYMNTS

    "Compared to their direct-to-consumer (D2C) counterparts, the heavy-lifting, hardworking B2B businesses of the world have always been chided for being a few clicks behind when it comes to embracing and investing in payments technology. And while that will probably remain the case for the foreseeable future, Maria Prados, vice president of global eCommerce at Worldpay, tells PYMNTS that the shift to automated, paperless and secure B2B transactions is on the move. “B2B historically has been pretty behind, especially around payments,” Prados said. But because they were less digitized and a lot more reliant on manual processes going into the COVID crisis, she said many B2B merchants were left with no choice but to make changes – and make them quickly."
  • Overcoming FinTech Skepticism To Meet Asian SMEs' FX Needs — PYMNTS

    "The global trading markets are in flux, and it's not only the COVID-19 crisis influencing international supply chains. Ongoing trade wars and rising costs of doing business in certain markets have manufacturers and other businesses adjusting where they operate and with whom. Across Asia, an ongoing boom in global eCommerce volume, coupled with a convergence of market conditions, has made cross-border B2B trade a booming business — and a potentially lucrative one for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). According to Bertrand Theaud, founder of Hong Kong-based FinTech Statrys, the proliferation of family-owned SMEs across Asia continues to propel cross-border trade volumes in the region. Yet these smaller companies struggle to access the kinds of financial products and services larger enterprises wield to finance that trade. Speaking with PYMNTS, Theaud discussed some of the unique challenges across Asia when SMEs grow internationally, plus explored what’s ahead for the market as more FinTechs step in to tackle those pain points."
  • Facebook's Novi Wallet and FastPay System Maybe 7 Times Faster...— Digital Information World

    "Facebook has been experimenting with its proposed Libra digital currency for a while now. It is basically a permissioned block-chain-based payment system which will be managed through the Libra Association. To carry on the transactions between different parties, Facebook has introduced its Novi wallet. Currently it is all in the experimental phases, but the plan in simple words is to introduce a new payment method which is as easy as sending a message to someone through their favorite messaging apps. All you will need to do is to add money to your Novi wallet, and Novi will convert in into Libra digital currency. Now, you just have to select whom to send this money to, check out the exchange rates for the amount you want to send them, and just hit transfer!"
  • Lightspeed to acquire point of sale rival ShopKeep for $440 million — ZDNet

    "Point-of-sale vendor Lightspeed is acquiring rival ShopKeep in a $440 million deal that signals further consolidation in the industry. Lightspeed said the acquisition will accelerate its growth as an emerging category leader following its recent initial public offering."
  • ACI: Real-Time Payments And P2P Will Accelerate Payments Digitization — PYMNTS

    "COVID-19 has shifted consumers away from card-based payments experiences, while P2P has accelerated a change enabling merchants to own the payments experience itself, Debbie Guerra, executive vice president of merchant and payments intelligence solutions at ACI, told PYMNTS in a recent interview. Guerra said that’s because consumers increasingly value speed and simplicity when it comes to all aspects of life, including their interactions with businesses. “Payments are no exception,” she said, noting that a variety of firms – from retailers to insurance providers – are tailoring their customer journeys to meet consumer demands."
  • Built For Speed: Millennials Drive Move To Faster Payments — PYMNTS

    "There’s a bit from “Seinfeld” way back in the 20th century that, paraphrased, goes like this: A check is like a note from your parents that states, “I don’t have any money, but if you contact these people … I’m sure they’ll stick for me. If you could just trust me this one time …” “Seinfeld,” of course, lives on in reruns. The check lives on, too, although like the days of “Must See TV” via networks, it is receding into the distance a bit. The paper-based conduits of payments must make way for digital, instant means."
  • Uber and Lyft expected to prevail in California ballot measure exempting them from state labor law

    "California voters decided Tuesday that Uber and Lyft should be exempt from state labor law that aimed to make their drivers employees rather than contractors, according to projections from NBC News." — CNBC
  • J.P. Morgan’s JPM Coin Is Being Used for Cross-Border B2B Payments — PaymentsJournal

    "This article in Forbes points out the latest update on JPM Coin, which was first announced back in early 2019, and uses that as a proxy for a broader overview of blockchain in B2B payments.  We have been covering the corporate banking use cases for blockchain since early 2016 when the super-hype was building. In numerous follow ups, we have been describing the two most likely use case categories for the technology as being in cross-border payments and trade services.  That is essentially what is playing out and will continue to do so over the next five plus years. There are several commercial blockchain trade networks operating at present and these will continue to grow scale and interoperability. The JPM Coin announcement is further validation that BCT is gaining ground."
  • Digital Transformation Accelerates Emerging Payment Platforms — PYMNTS

    "It would be difficult to pick a single reason why payments modernization is currently accelerating. But Domenico Scaffidi, head of market infrastructures for FinTech software maker Volante Technologies, told PYMNTS in a recent interview that better cloud technology, proven cost efficiencies and COVID-related lifestyle changes are all partial explanations. All told, Scaffidi said the modernization process is simply growing up. “It is interesting to observe that cloud technology and digital transformation are now mature enough so there is [no longer any] lack of trust in security or bandwidth on the bank side,” he said."
  • Red Hat: Incumbent Banks Need To Reinvent Themselves — PYMNTS

    "Nobody likes getting old, especially traditional banks that have found themselves straddling two financial worlds – old tech and new tech – while all the “young, cool kids” try to steal their customers and business. If these banks want to survive, said Ramon Villarreal, global architect for financial services at Red Hat, they have no choice but to reinvent themselves. “They have to stop thinking that they’re banks, and instead think, ‘Well, I'm actually a technology organization with a banking license,’” Villarreal told Karen Webster in a recent interview. “They have to innovate more. They have to implement new ways of thinking and working. They actually have to stop being the traditional bank and start thinking of their customers as partners.” He said that although big banks are different today than they were 10 years ago and are always trying new things, most of that is due to customers' demands for more services, as well as “a huge weight of competition” that’s coming from neobanks and FinTechs. “It's not because [legacy banks] can transform. It is because they have to do this,” Villarreal noted."
  • Alliance Data Selects Fiserv for Credit Processing — PaymentsJournal

    "Big news item as Alliance Data shifts to Fiserv. Alliance Data is one of the top lenders in the private label credit card space and faces SynchronyCiti Retail Services, and Capital One PLCC.  Mercator Advisory Group covered the industry in this recent Research Report. Alliance Data recently changed executive management after a series of bumps in the road, tapping Ralph Andretta, formerly of Citi, to run the business. The timing was perfect for the management change, particularly since Alliance Data is contending with the floundering U.S. retail market and the impact of COVID-19 on sales and credit quality."
  • Digital Currencies Carry Risks As Well As Rewards, IMF Warns — PaymentsJournal

    "The push by central banks across the world to develop digital currencies could have some significant downsides as well, warns a new report by the International Monetary Fund (IMF). As central banks in Europe, China and the United States move closer to rolling out digital cash, the IMF cautions the move could lead to foreign currencies displacing local scripts, Reuters reported. The adoption of digital currencies could also make it easier to “facilitate illicit flows” while also making it “harder for regulatory authorities to enforce exchange restrictions and capital flow management measures,” the report notes. Roughly 80 percent of central banks in 66 countries, including 21 advanced nations, are exploring the issuance of digital currencies, while 40 percent have become pilot programs or experiments, including China, which just completed a major trial run."
  • How Zelle Protects Users Against Scams And Frauds With AI, Analytics — PYMNTS

    "Fraudsters are deploying tactics ranging from impersonating tax officials to selling fake PPE on peer-to-peer (P2P) payment apps amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Fighting these threats requires an equally wide-ranging defense, says Jamie Armistead, vice president of Zelle. In this month’s Preventing Financial Crime Playbook, Armistead discusses how artificial intelligence (AI) can offer a bird’s eye view of suspicious transactions and stop fraudsters from exploiting legitimate customers’ vulnerabilities."
  • Fintechs Need to Learn From Banks and Credit Unions about Protecting Consumers from—PaymentsJournal

    "The New York Times published an in-depth article on fraud issues that consumers using Square’s Cash App and PayPal’s Venmo are enduring. Scammers are targeting these users and tricking them out of significant amounts of money, despite the fact that users need to acknowledge and authorize each transaction.  The tactics that criminals use are getting increasingly sophisticated, as highlighted in one tale of woe:"
  • A Pilot Is Coming for FedNow, But Some Question the Fed’s Deliberate Pace — Digital Transactions

    "The announcement from the Federal Reserve late Monday of a pilot for the FedNow real-time payments service may represent an important stage in the development of a service not expected to go live until 2023 at the earliest. But observers caution rival services have already made headway with key market participants."
  • Venmo Synchs With Synchrony — PaymentsJournal

    "The world of credit cards certainly felt the impact of COVID-19. However, there is no shortage of innovation at Synchrony. In recent months, we’ve seen applications shift away from paper in a patent-pending process called Direct to Device, where merchants can send a credit application through email or QR code. Verizon’s co-brand was undoubtedly a win, but one of my personal favorites is the secured private label credit card with Amazon. "
  • Nacha Adopts New Rules To Modernize ACH Payments — PYMNTS

    "Nonprofit Nacha, which enables Automated Clearing House (ACH) payments, has adopted eight new amendments to the Nacha Operating Rules that a press release said will help to modernize the payment style."
  • Everything You Need to Know About Digital Nomad Visas — Entrepreneur

    "Not too long ago, the concept of catering specifically to  was too new and strange for most countries to truly understand all of the long-term benefits. It looks like things are going to be making a drastic change soon as countries are starting to open up to the reality of how financially sustainable it is to start attracting digital nomads with specialized visa options."