Welcome to our new Payments Insights newsletter, a morning email with the top news and analysis on the digital payments industry, produced by BI Intelligence.
FORTUMO PARTNERS WITH PAYELP. Today, U.S.-based carrier billing company Fortumo announced a partnership with global merchant services provider, Payelp. Fortumo offers carrier billing in over 70 countries, but its focus is on emerging markets. The company currently works with over 100,000 app developers including big names like Rovio, Electronic Arts, and Gameloft.
Payelp offers merchant services, — i.e., payments technology and credit card processing help — in 74 countries and specialises in working with merchants who offer digital goods. (Fortumo)
WHAT THE DEAL MEANS FOR CARRIER BILLING. Carrier billing allows mobile users to purchase goods and services by adding the cost of the items to their mobile bills. This payments option is especially attractive in emerging markets where credit cards are not widely used. To date, carrier billing is mostly used by app developers who want to sell in-app virtual goods, like tokens and stickers, in markets with little credit access. Carrier billing platforms need more access to merchants if they’re going to become more widely used for payments. Payelp will provide Fortumo with those relationships.
MASTERCARD ACQUIRES A LEADING TURKISH PAYMENTS PROCESSOR. MasterCard announced that it has acquired Turkey’s leading independent credit card processor, Provus.
“The acquisition of Provus … increases our processing presence in Europe.” says Javier Perez, President MasterCard Europe. (MasterCard)
NEW BI INTELLIGENCE REPORT: In our most recent payments report we look at each piece of the complex credit card-based payments system.
In other news…
RETAIL BANKS HAVE A COMMUNICATION PROBLEM.Retail banks are doing a good job of offering digital features to enhance their consumer-facing services. They could do a better job communicating what those feature are, and how to use them. One way to do this is to follow Amazon and offer on-demand video customer service as opposed to lengthy, dry user manuals. (American Banker)
THE FALSE FACEBOOK-BITCOIN RUMOUR. There is a rumour circulating on the web that Facebook is testing out a new feature on its advertising platform that will allow users to pay in Bitcoin. We confirmed with Facebook that this rumour is false.
QUOTE OF THE DAY. “The U.S. payments system is too slow, too expensive, and too opaque,” says Founding Director Dave Birch of Consult Hyperion. Birch argues that an overlooked value behind Bitcoin is its public ledger which allows for greater transparency than the legacy system. (American banker)
SQUARE DESIGNS A NEW CASE FOR SQUARE READER. In partnership with Square, Griffin Technology has designed a new accessory, a protective case for smartphones using Square’s credit card reader. The case secures the Square dongle, protects mobile devices, and guides credit cards for easy swipes. (Square)
LADIES AND GENTLEMAN, COINYE WEST. On January 11, an anonymous group is launching a Bitcoin rival named, Coinye West. No word from the cryptocurrencies namesake, Kanye West. (Payments Journal)
A LOOK BACK AT 2013. From PayPal’s acquisition of Braintree to the announcement of Coin, PYMNTS reviews the biggest events that took place in the payments world in 2013. (PYMNTS)
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