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March 15, 2012

PayPal Launches 'PayPal Here' for Mobile Payments Acceptance

PayPal logo 140pxPayPal has announced PayPal Here, a new "global mobile payment solution that allows small businesses to accept almost any form of payment."
They can accept payments by swiping cards with a fully encrypted thumb-sized card reader, or use a phone camera to scan and process cards and checks. It also allows them to invoice directly from the mobile app and, of course, accept PayPal in a brand new way.

Official website with all the details is http://www.paypal.com/here/. The PayPal Blog also has a nice summary post with the mandatory how-it-works video.

BOKU Secures $35 Million Investment From NEA, Telefónica and Others

Boku logo 140x60pxBOKU announced that it has secured $35 Million in funding. Investors include New Enterprise Associates (NEA), Telefónica Digital, as well as previous investors.
“Payments are going mobile and we want to be at the forefront of this trend,” said Matthew Key, Chairman & CEO, Telefónica Digital. “BOKU has quickly established itself as a true innovator in the mobile commerce space and this investment gives us access to their tools, infrastructure and know how, ideally complementing our own mobile payments expertise. In addition to the investment we are also embarking on a global partnership with BOKU to enhance our operator billing capabilities and the overall payment experience through our future mobile wallet services.”

Additional participants in the round include Andreessen Horowitz, Benchmark Capital, DAG Ventures, Index Ventures and Khosla Ventures.

Discover Implements 2013 EMV Mandate in U.S., Canada and Mexico

Discover logo 140pxDiscover announced it is implementing a 2013 EMV mandate for acquirers and direct-connect merchants in the U.S., Canada and Mexico. "This industry alignment will streamline certification and deployment efforts and enable a manageable transition for all parties involved, including issuers, merchants and acquirers."

First Data Releases February 2012 SpendTrend

First data logo 140x60px First Data has released its First Data SpendTrend analysis for the full month of February 2012 compared to February 2011.
February’s overall year-over-year dollar volume growth was 8.9%, a healthy increase from January’s growth of 7.0%. Overall dollar volume growth continued its positive upward trend in February. Improving economic conditions provided consumers with more confidence and income to spend.

SpendTrend tracks same-store consumer spending by credit, signature debit, PIN debit, EBT cards and checks at U.S. merchant locations.

Headline News - March 15, 2012

On the web:

On the wires:

Note: Headline News is compiled by Glenbrook Partners. Throughout the day, as we spot interesting developments, this post is updated.

March 14, 2012

Consumers and Mobile Financial Services

FedThe U.S. Federal Reserve has released the findings from an online survey, conducted in December 2011 and January 2012, examining the use of mobile technology to access financial services and make financial decisions.
One out of five American consumers used their mobile phone to access their bank account, credit card, or other financial account in the 12 months ending in January 2012 and an additional one out of five indicated they would likely use mobile banking at some point in the future.

The full "Consumers and Mobile Financial Services" report is located here.

Discover Announces First Internationally-Issued Discover Cards

Discover logo 140pxDiscover Financial Services has announced it has expanded its franchise agreement with Diners Club Ecuador (DCE) to include issuance of Discover cards in Ecuador. This is the first time in company history that Discover cards will be issued beyond U.S. borders.

Federal Reserve Reports Consumer Credit for January 2012

FedThe US Federal Reserve has reported its latest G.19 Consumer Credit statistics - finding that "consumer credit increased at an annual rate of 8-1/2 percent in January. Revolving credit decreased at an annual rate of 4-1/2 percent, while nonrevolving credit increased at an annual rate of 14-3/4 percent."

March 13, 2012

PayPal Unveils New Digital Wallet at SXSW 2012

PayPal logo 140pxSam Shrauger, VP of global product and experience at PayPal, presented the new PayPal Digital Wallet at SXSW. The full story of what is included is sketched out on the PayPal Blog. For a behind-the-scenes guided tour of the wallet features there are two videos on the eBay ink blog that are worth watching. Targeted availability for PayPal users is late May 2012.

H&R Block and Wipit Partner on Mobile Financial Services for Unbanked

Wipit logo 140pxH&R Block Bank and mobile payments provider Wipit have announced a partnership to provide mobile financial services to "cash preferred customers".
"The underbanked consumer represents an entirely different market opportunity for merchants. We're excited about our partnership with H&R Block and the tremendous value we can jointly offer cash preferred consumers and the merchants who serve them," said Wipit, Inc. CEO Richard Kang.

Wipit also announced an investment by H&R Block. The Wipit website is at http://www.wipit.me/.

CFSI Proposes a Model Fee Disclosure Box for Prepaid Cards

CFSI Logo SmallThe Center for Financial Services Innovation (CFSI) is proposing a standardized fee box for improving the transparency of general purpose reloadable (GPR) prepaid cards.
“Consumers need to be able to easily determine the true cost of a prepaid card and compare different products before deciding which to purchase,” said David Newville, CFSI’s Policy Manager. “A well-designed fee box can help them make informed choices. By developing a simplified and standardized format, companies will ultimately attract more consumers to prepaid cards.”

Three prepaid card providers – Green Dot, Plastyc, and Ready Credit - have committed to adopt or test CFSI’s proposed disclosure box.

March 12, 2012

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