Payments round-up: 18 May 2017
Words cut. Time saved. A round-up of key events in the payments enclave. Featuring Australian Settlements Limited, IBM, Mastercard, UnionPay International, Visa and Wirecard.
Financial services provider Australian Settlements Limited (ASL) has adopted IBM Cloud for its new payments platform (NPP) implementation. ASL provides members, including building societies, credit unions and mutual banks, with settlement and transaction processing services. NPP is an initiative to develop a new national infrastructure for real-time payments in the country.
The IBM hybrid cloud team designed the NPP accelerator to deliver “pre-requisite” IBM middleware, third party packaged payments application and Swift’s supplied software componentry for financial messaging. Through the new system, ASL members will be able to connect to the basic infrastructure as well as access to forums that provide guidance on when activities should progress.
Almost every firm seems keen to cash in on talk of a cashless society, and Mastercard, UnionPay International and Visa have teamed up to launch a standardised Quick Response (QR) Code for payments, which they say helps “Thailand’s transition to a cashless society”.
This development means that consumers don’t need to scan different QR codes to make payments with those three companies. Merchants will only need to display one QR code at the storefront or through the acquiring bank’s mobile app.
In its financial results for Q1 2017, Germany-based Wirecard has reported some healthy stats. Transaction volumes processed through its platform grew in the first quarter by 34.4% to €17.2 billion (Q1/2016: €12.8 billion). Consolidated revenues increased by 31% to €274.9 million (Q1/2016: €210.5 million). Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) rose by 31.1% to €81.3 million (Q1/2016: €62.0 million), while earnings after tax went up by 32.5% to €48.5 million (Q1/2016: €36.6 million).
In March, Wirecard finalised its acquisition of Citi Prepaid Services, which expands its prepaid payment processing business in North America and brings more than 120 former Citi Prepaid employees under the Wirecard umbrella.