Our sister website, PaymentsJobs.com, has several new job postings:
If you've got current openings for payments professionals, be sure to post your requirements on PaymentsJobs.com! Featured postings on PaymentsJobs.com cost $200 for a 30-day listing.
A reminder that the Airline Payment Summit is coming up in Toronto, Ontario on April 9-10, 2008. "As airline yields come under downward pressure, Airline Payment Summit (APS) will examine leading-edge low-cost payment solutions within the landscape of traditional forms of payments such as credit cards."
Northwest Airlines has announced that it is "offering cash back into customer PayPal accounts when they purchase a ticket at www.nwa.com using PayPal for payment. PayPal is offering $50 USD cash back into customer PayPal accounts when they purchase tickets of $250 or more by March 27, 2008. Travel must take place between April 1 and June 14, 2008, and tickets must be purchased at www.nwa.com."
Congressman Barney Frank, Chairman of the House Committee on Financial Services, gave a speech today to the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce in which he call for a number of "new policy options" to help deal with current issues. Among them, was the notion of a new Financial Service System Risk Regulation (perhaps the Federal Reserve with additional powers) that "has the capacity and power to assess risk across financial markets regardless of corporate form and to intervene when appropriate."
The archive of Pay By Touch-related stories here on Payments News begins over four years ago. It's interesting to scroll back (read from the bottom up) and look at the various partnerships, financings, trials, etc. that Pay By Touch announced along the way prior to shuttering its biometrics payment service at 11:59 PM last night.
For some time, Amazon.com has offered merchants Fulfillment by Amazon - where they could have Amazon hold their goods for shipment at Amazon's fulfillment centers. Now, Amazon's introduced a new Fulfillment Web Service that enables merchants to programmatically manage their inventories, replenishment and shipment activities using FBA. "Products that are fulfilled by Amazon qualify for all of Amazon's buyer shipping and customer promotions (such as free Super Saver shipping and Amazon Prime) and Amazon takes care of customer service and returns." More on the Amazon Web Services blog.
At its annual meeting today, Starbucks announced several new initiatives including adding a new rewards feature for registered users of its Starbucks Card. Starbucks says that currently one in seven customers uses the Starbucks Card to pay.
We've received the following announcement from Pay By Touch: "Solidus Networks, Inc., dba Pay By Touch, regretfully announced today that it will no longer process biometric transactions on behalf of its merchant customers and consumer membership base, as 11:59:59pm March 19, 2008."
Dave Birch writes on the Digital Money Blog about a presentation given by Julian Niblett of Boots, one of the UK's largest retailers, at the New Payments Channels conference in London. Interestingly, Boots studied where in their stores contactless made economic sense, and where it didn't. But, perhaps even more interesting were Niblett's comments on the costs of cash acceptance vs. the cost of cards.
Discover Financial Services reported first quarter financial results this morning - with sales volume up 5% and US card managed loans up 2%. Discover reported managed credit card net chargeoffs of 4.37%, up 52 basis points from the prior calendar quarter. A transcript of Discover's earnings call today is available online. Discover will be holding an investor day meeting in New York City tomorrow, Thursday, March 20.
Wells Fargo has announced the Wells Fargo vSafe service, calling it "the first online storage solution from a financial institution that lets retail banking customers store and organize copies of important materials, such as financial statements, loan and tax documents, wills, passports, and birth, marriage and death certificates."
Visa Inc. began trading this morning on the New York Stock Exchange - stock symbol V - in early trading the shares traded up over 30 percent from the $44 offering price. Visa has added a new Investor Relations section to its corporate web site. Visa Inc.'s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Joseph W. Saunders, made a statement following the launch of trading: "This is an exciting and historic day for Visa. It marks the culmination of a more than two-year process that led to our global reorganization and our becoming a public company."
We have received news of the following recent management changes:
Visa Inc. announced today that it has priced the initial public offering of 406,000,000 shares of Class A common stock at $44 per share. Visa's shares will begin trading on March 19, 2008, on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol "V". Visa expects net proceeds from the offering, after deducting underwriting discounts and commissions and estimated offering expenses, to be approximately $17.3 billion.
The Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond's Cash Unit has established a Payments Advisory Council "to study and analyze payments trends with an eye toward anticipating consumer behavior." Their first Payments Advisory Council report is now available - surveying nine merchants about the payment options they accept and the trends they're seeing in terms of consumer preferences.
The Smart Card Alliance’s first annual Payments Councils Summit held recently in Salt Lake City, Utah, reviewed the growth of contactless financial and transit payment markets in the US.
Quova has announced a partnership with Guardian Analytics to help protect online financial accounts from fraud and identity theft. "Under the partnership, Guardian Analytics has integrated Quova’s IP geolocation data into its FraudMAP solution. Providing online channel risk management, FraudMAP delivers fraud detection, forensics and ongoing risk monitoring based on strong analytics and predictive models of individual behavior. The unique solution was built from the ground up to automatically detect new online fraud threats in real time without requiring rules development or algorithm training."
The PayItGreen Alliance says it is "asking consumers to turn off paper bills and statements and make payments electronically. The Alliance, comprised of leaders in the financial and consumer billing industries, was formed in 2007 to educate consumers about the positive environmental impact of choosing electronic bills, statements and payments over paper alternatives. The Alliance has named April as PayItGreen Month to launch this initiative."
Obopay has announced that "customers can now use their existing bank accounts to send and receive money via their mobile phone. With Obopay's mobile money transfer, non- customers can pick up payments without signing up for Obopay. These innovations make it easier than ever for any bank customer to conveniently send and receive payments from their mobile phones."
Metavante has announced that it will process and settle transactions for NACHA’s Secure Vault Payments, an automated clearing house (ACH)-based Internet payments system that allows consumers to conduct e-commerce and bill payment transactions without sharing personal or account information online.
Cornerstone Advisors has released "Cornerstone Report 2007: Benchmarks and Best Practices for Mid-Size Banks" urging "bankers to recognize how misaligned the industry has become and implores individual banks to break out of a "current closed loop that will go nowhere.""