Mastercard launches a QR bot to facilitate the push towards cashless and TouchBistro and WePay team up on payments innovation for restaurants. In other news, PayPal retires two in-store payment services and some Nigerian banks are turning to fintechs to manage their payments services.
Here’s your weekly news roundup!
TouchBistro and WePay team up on new payments innovation for restaurants. TouchBistro Payments powered by WePay (a Chase company) will offer restaurant owners instant payment processing and a new, integrated mobile device that allows customers the ability to tap, chip or swipe directly from their table, according to the press release.
With TouchBistro being the provider of iPad POS software, this partnership makes it easy for restaurants already banking with Chase to integrate seamlessly to TouchBistro and benefit from their POS functionality.
“With TouchBistro Payments powered by WePay, our restaurants will onboard instantly, so they can start taking payments the moment they unbox TouchBistro,” said Alex Barrotti, founder and CEO of TouchBistro via the same release. “Both restaurant owners and customers will experience easier payment processing with the new mobile EMV compliant payment device for digital, credit and debit card transactions.”
WePay’s mobile POS solution (introduced in 2016) lays the groundwork for TouchBistro Payments – scheduled to launch this spring.
Mastercard launches a Masterpass QR bot to facilitate the push towards cashless in Nigeria. According to research done by both MasterCard and The Fletcher School, 98 percent of Nigerian commerce initiated from consumers to businesses is still based on cash.
In an effort to tip the scales towards digital, Mastercard will pilot a new Masterpass QR bot to help facilitate the shift from cash to QR payments via Facebook Messenger, according to the press release. As part of the pilot, businesses can send a request to the bot to enable QR payments, receive approval from the bank, set up an account and start accepting digital payments.
This launch will be supported by Ecobank and Zenith Bank and targets small businesses in Africa and Asia.
The same release quotes Mastercard Digital Channels and Regions EVP Jorn Lambert regarding the new initiative. “Every business owner is looking for ways to increase sales and draw new customers into their stores,” says Lambert. “By offering QR-based digital payments, smaller retailers can achieve these goals and create greater customer stickiness with little to no investment beyond the phone they already have.”
PayPal plans to retire two in-store payment services effective March 31 of this year. The global brand alerted customers via email that the two checkout services – one using special payment codes in stores and the other using phone number and PIN – will no longer be available, according to Bloomberg.
What could be the reason? When these services originally launched, they were deemed competitive with the payment brands but as the market continues to advance, so must the technology.
In response to this need, new PayPal CEO Dan Schulman has partnered with Mastercard, Visa and other major brands to transform PayPal from a checkout button on websites to a full-fledged financial tool available for everyday use, according to the same article. Retiring these two payment options is part of this initiative.
PayPal spokesman Joseph Gallo also explains, via the same article, that the PayPal team is currently “working with a number of retailers directly to create customized in-store experiences that leverages mobile in a meaningful way for their customers.”
ISO payments provider NMI completes its acquisition of omnichannel gateway and EMV solutions provider Creditcall. According to the press release, this acquisition (initiated last month) makes NMI a leader in omnichannel payments technology and strategically compliments the company’s objective to deliver one unified payments solution to ISOs, VARS and ISVs currently servicing omnichannel merchants.
“This acquisition marks a major milestone for our company,” explains NMI CEO Roy Banks via the same release. “Creditcall’s card-present acumen combined with NMI’s card-not-present expertise enables us to bring to market the first truly omnichannel gateway platform.”
Financial institutions in Nigeria begin outsourcing their payment gateway services to fintech companies. Already being discussed in the U.S. for some time now, Nigeria has started the initiative towards banks and fintechs partnering together, according to The Guardian.
Currently, most in-country banks provide payment processing as part of their merchant offerings, according to the same article, but recent efforts to ensure efficient service and allow banks to direct more of their focus to traditional banking matters have prompted this partnership with fintechs.
“Banks and other financial institutions need Fintech companies and Fintech companies cannot exist without Banks, explains Global Accelerex Managing Director Tunde Ogungbade via the same article. “It is a symbiotic relationship.” He goes on to speculate that “as more banks and FinTech see this relationship as a complementary rather that a competitive one, there will be more outsourcing agreements beyond payment that will be a win-win for both sides.”