Tuesday, January 25, 2011

MasterCard and Telefónica Create a Joint Venture to Offer Mobile Financial Solutions in Latin America

Common geographical regions of Latin AmericaImage via Wikipedia

The new company will offer mobile financial solutions to Movistar’s 87 million customers in 12 countries in the region

  • As part of this agreement, Movistar® mobile subscribers in Latin America will be able to use their mobile phones for person-to-person money transfers, bill payment, mobile airtime reload and retail purchases, among other services.
  • This initiative is a step toward achieving financial inclusion for the underserved in Latin America - positively impacting its economic development.
  • New company will provide a better alternative to paying with cash for both consumers and merchants, combined with the convenience of mobility.
MIAMI & MADRID--(BUSINESS WIRE)--MasterCard (NYSE:MA) and Telefónica announced today a joint venture to lead the development of mobile financial solutions in 12 countries in Latin America where Telefónica is present with the Movistar® brand. This is a first-of-a-kind initiative where a payments and telecommunications company partner to create a new company focused on integrating the convenience and accessibility provided by mobile phones with a set of financial solutions that will work with existing electronic payment systems.
“This joint venture places Telefónica in a solid position to lead the development of mobile financial solutions in Latin America”
The new company, managed independently, will have a 50/50 ownership participation and will leverage banking relationships of both companies, Telefónica’s telecommunications assets and MasterCard’s payments expertise. The joint venture will have an open model to ensure interoperability among the banked and unbanked segments, and serve as a bridge between the financial and telecommunications sectors. It will seek to provide 87 million current and potential Movistar customers with mobile payment services that will be linked to a mobile wallet or prepaid account including money transfers, mobile airtime reload, bill payment and retail purchases, among others. In addition, some of these services such as receiving remittances may also benefit 200 million Movistar and non-Movistar mobile subscribers in the 12 Latin America markets included in the joint venture.
This initiative is a step toward achieving financial inclusion for the underserved in Latin America - positively impacting its economic development. Aside from offering convenience and security, the range of mobile financial solutions to be offered will be the most complete to date and widely accessible to all, regardless of their access to banking services.
Through this initiative, it is expected that acceptance of electronic payments will be expanded to enable what are today predominantly cash-based merchant locations and micro-businesses such as taxis, street vendors, among others, to accept mobile payments.
Financial inclusion and the development of society
As part of its objectives, the joint venture will seek to promote the financial inclusion of a high percentage of the Latin American population with difficult or no access to traditional banking systems for reasons such as low income or living in remote areas – to potentially have a positive impact to the economic development of the region.
Market research and customer surveys in Latin America both confirm that mobile phones are perceived to be convenient and safe, and therefore, an appropriate tool for financial transactions. It is also estimated that by 2014 mobile financial transactions will reach approximately US $63 billion in Latin America.
“MasterCard’s commitment to foster financial inclusion across the globe makes the joint venture an exciting opportunity to provide accessible and affordable financial solutions to the millions of consumers in the Latin America region who have never been able to enjoy the benefits of electronic payments,” said Richard Hartzell, President, MasterCard Latin America and Caribbean region. “This initiative puts us at the forefront of mobile payments in the region and arms us with the right artillery to strengthen our war on cash.”
“By offering mobile financial solutions, we are fully responding to the demands of the population in Latin America that trusts in their mobile phone to conduct financial operations,” said Joaquin Mata, Global Head of Financial Services for Telefónica. “This joint venture places Telefónica in a solid position to lead the development of mobile financial solutions in Latin America”.
About MasterCard
As a leading global payments company, MasterCard prides itself on being at the heart of commerce, helping to make life easier and more efficient for everyone, everywhere. MasterCard serves as a franchisor, processor and advisor to the payments industry, and makes commerce happen by providing a critical economic link among financial institutions, governments, businesses, merchants, and cardholders worldwide. In 2009, $2.5 trillion in gross dollar volume was generated on its products by consumers around the world. Powered by the MasterCard Worldwide Network – the fastest payment processing network in the world – MasterCard processes over 22 billion transactions each year, has the capacity to handle 140 million transactions per hour, with an average network response time of 140 milliseconds and with 99.99 percent reliability. MasterCard advances global commerce through its family of brands, including MasterCard®, Maestro®, and Cirrus®; its suite of core products such as credit, debit, and prepaid; and its innovative platforms and functionalities, such as MasterCard PayPass™ and MasterCard inControl™. MasterCard serves consumers, governments, and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories. For more information, please visit us at www.mastercard.com. Follow us on Twitter: @mastercardnews.
About Telefónica
Telefónica is one of the largest telecommunications companies in the world in terms of market capitalisation. Its activities are centered mainly on the fixed and mobile telephony businesses with broadband as the key tool for the development of both. The company has a significant presence in 25 countries and a customer base that amounts close to 282 million accesses around the world. Telefonica has a strong presence in Spain, Europe and Latin America, where the company focuses an important part of its growth strategy.
Telefónica is a 100% listed company, with more than 1.5 million direct shareholders. Its share capital currently comprises 4.563.996.485 ordinary shares traded on the Spanish Stock Market (Madrid, Barcelona, Bilbao and Valencia) and on those in London, Tokyo, New York, Lima, Buenos Aires and São Paulo.


MasterCard Worldwide
Marcus Moilna, + 1 305-539-2320
Janet Rivera-Hernandez, +1 305-539-2304
Investor Relations:
Barbara Gasper, +1 914-249-4565
Telefónica Media Inquiries:
Permalink: http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20110125006048/en/MasterCard-Telef%C3%B3nica-Create-Joint-Venture-Offer-Mobile

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SHAZAM Makes Strategic Investment in Adaptive Payments

Des Moines, Iowa―SHAZAM, Inc. announced today that it has made a strategic investment in the payment authentication company Adaptive Payments, Inc. SHAZAM, an electronic funds transfer (EFT) network in the payments industry since 1976, chose to invest in the Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based company after partnering with Adaptive Payments for Internet PIN debit processing and gateway services.

“We made an investment in Adaptive Payments because we believe in the company and the technology they are implementing,” said Michael Hollinger, SHAZAM President and CEO. “We concur with Adaptive Payments’ vision for the future of e-commerce and m-commerce transactions and are confident in their ability to deliver these products to the marketplace.”

“We are thrilled to strengthen our relationship with SHAZAM, not just as a customer but as a strategic partner,” said Shashi Kapur, Adaptive Payments CEO. “This investment underscores the level of confidence that SHAZAM has in our products, our management team, and our vision for the delivery of highly secure and authenticated payment solutions across all payment card acceptance channels.”

In September 2010, SHAZAM and Adaptive Payments partnered to provide Internet PIN debit processing and gateway services for financial institutions across the nation. SHAZAM and Adaptive Payments are also working together on a Person-to-Person (P2P) solution, assisting financial institutions’ customers in transferring funds directly from one person to another, most commonly using mobile technology, in real time.

“Adaptive Payments has demonstrated their ability to work with us to tailor products to meet the needs of our financial institution partners,” stated Hollinger. “Together we are expanding access for financial institution customers to multiple payment options through multiple channels, without sacrificing security or functionality.”

“Adaptive Payments will benefit not just from SHAZAM’s financial investment, but also from
their knowledge, experience, and reputation as a leading PIN debit network,” said Kapur. “This will significantly enhance our ability to execute our core strategy to enable secure payment applications that are universally accepted by consumers, merchants, and PIN debit networks.

Kapur added, “Consumers expect that the channels and ‘device screens’ through which they interact, such as a lap top, desk top, mobile phone, or tablet, will provide the connectivity needed to enable easy, fast, safe, and secure commerce to occur irrespective of channels and devices.Adaptive Payments operates at the intersection of these channels to enable secure commerce to occur using its 5DSecure TM authentication platform.”

About Adaptive Payments

Based in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., Adaptive Payments is a payment authentication company that enables easy, safe, secure, and authenticated transactions to occur using the cardholder’s PIN or other data that is known to the cardholder to authenticate debit and credit transactions. The company has developed payment solutions that serve four vertical markets: Internet Sales, Money Transfer, Bill Payment, and Prepaid Top Up. These products are delivered across the ecommerce, mobile commerce, mail/phone order, call center, and brick and mortar channels. All Adaptive Payments’ solutions feature “5DSecure”- five-factor authentication using two unique channels for authentication separating the sales and personal data from the secure PIN.


The SHAZAM network was founded in 1976 and is one of the last remaining member-owned
and -controlled EFT networks and processors in the industry. SHAZAM offers ATM processing, debit and ATM card processing, card authorization services, merchant processing, Automated Clearing House (ACH) services, core processing, and information security solutions. SHAZAM serves 1,500 community financial institutions in 31 states.

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ElectraCard Services (ECS) Announces New U.S. Operations

American operations to set regional presence while strengthening global footprint
OMAHA, Neb.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--ElectraCard Services (ECS), a leading provider of software solutions for electronic payment systems, announced the start of its Americas operations in Omaha, NE. This is a first of the three International operations planned for ECS during the year.
“ECS has a unique and valuable service offering, and I'm very excited to introduce these offerings to the Americas market. The response from the marketplace thus far has been nothing short of extraordinary as we offer a fresh, yet tried, tested and trusted alternative for Electronic Payments.”
ECS is a subsidiary of Opus Software Solutions, a company with a formidable presence in the U.S. market. Opus has provided customized software services to blue-chip customers in the financial domain for over a decade.
By leveraging the experience and service capabilities of the parent company Opus, ECS is uniquely positioned to meet the dynamic needs of a highly competitive market through its ‘electra’ suite of payment products. ECS’ American offices will encompass end-to-end operations, most specifically all client facing activities such as Sales, Client Implementation, Post Sales and Services and Support.
The Americas operations will be led by Mr. Dale Van Stratten, whose previous experience includes leadership positions at ACI Worldwide and First Data Corporation. Mr. Van Stratten said, "ECS has a unique and valuable service offering, and I'm very excited to introduce these offerings to the Americas market. The response from the marketplace thus far has been nothing short of extraordinary as we offer a fresh, yet tried, tested and trusted alternative for Electronic Payments."
Mr. Ramesh Mengawade, CEO of Opus Software Solutions and ElectraCard Services said, “ECS has been catering to the needs of top-rung financial institutions through the ‘electra’ suite of products for over seven years. The needs and challenges of each market, especially matured markets are different. With our expertise to deliver customized products and services along with the experience of the Opus team, I am confident that we will soon build a strong foothold in the US and Americas market. Mr. Dale Van Stratten will lead our Americas operations and his leadership and expertise will further strengthen our foundation and commitment to this market.”
About ElectraCard Services
ElectraCard Services, a subsidiary of Opus Software Solutions, provides business critical applications and third party processing services for credit and payments management industry across the world. ECS is a PCI DSS certified Third Party Processor (TPP) for MasterCard® and VISA® across the issuing and acquiring spectrum of the electronic payments business. MasterCard Worldwide has a strategic investment of 12.5% in ElectraCard Services.
ElectraCard Services enables financial institutions, retailers, finance companies and corporations to electronically process, in real-time, any type of payment transaction, including credit, debit, pre-paid, smart cards, and ACH. ECS also offers ecommerce gateway and switching solutions. Its solutions support multiple institutions, multiple currencies, and varying processing requirements on a single platform. By providing comprehensive and flexible solutions that can be deployed to a market of one, ElectraCard Services offers unmatched services and solutions.


ElectraCard Services
Manju Nandwani, +919325686403
Shyamli Biswas, +919860710142
Abhijit Kalyani, 9730605850
Dale Van Stratten, 402-778-5208
Permalink: http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20110124005267/en/ElectraCard-Services-ECS-Announces-U.S.-Operations
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