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Passport, the technology business for city transit systems, raises $43 million


Passport, company that’s managing much of the technical aspects of how people pay to use public transportation resources in cities like London, Miami and Los Angeles, has just raised $43 million. The money, from Bain Capital Ventures, will go to help the company expand its payment and transaction services nationally and internationally. Read More.


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NEW REPORT: Can Western Union Leverage Its Heritage To Build A Better X-Border API?


There was a time when the telegraph was as important to keeping people connected as the smartphone is today. And while the telegraph’s heyday may well be over, the network it once rested upon can still be put to good use, especially with an assist from API solutions. As more merchants and smaller businesses seek to engage in global commerce, several companies are stepping up their efforts to help merchants address the complexities presented by international trade.

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Blockchain Starts 2017 With A Bang


Whether you believe the hype or not, blockchain technology is attracting massive investments, exploration and competition across the globe. In the last week alone, top players in the distributed ledger space have made progress in their own initiatives, from membership growth within blockchain consortia to the pursuit of distributed ledger-related patents by top banks. PYMNTS examines the data surrounding the latest developments of blockchain, already off to a speedy start in 2017.

Live Demo: Supercharge Your Month-End Close

Speaker: Nancy Wu, Head of Sales and Customer Success at SkyStem

Automation generally supercharges any process and brings its value to the forefront. See how infusing automation like ART (a unique month-end close solution) into your close can get you to the next level of closing. We will share a live demo of SkyStem's solution, ART, and share the key elements of month-end close automation.

Big Data For Big Returns At Retailers Big And Small?


“Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is, I don’t know which half.”. That’s a quote from department store maven John Wanamaker, illustrating a conundrum for retailers (and merchants in general): Namely, you’ve got to reach out to consumers if you are going to convince them to buy your wares. But reaching out involves time and money — both precious commodities. Neither is good to waste. Thus, in the age of Big Data, how to ensure that time and money are well-spent?

The Wonder Of Wegmans


Supermarkets aren’t generally the sorts of things that generate massive, dedicated fan bases. Certainly most shopper have a preferred grocery store (or at least one they tend to frequent more often than others) — but in general, it is not something most people talk all that often about since on the whole shopping for groceries doesn’t register all that highly on the excitement meter.

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Jet.com Tests Try Before You Buy


In eCommerce news: The tug-of-war game just got a bit tighter, and Amazon may be in the crosshairs. Walmart’s Jet.com is helping to push the envelope with its new “ try before you buy ” approach. Approximately 300,000 online product samplings and exclusive offers will be included in monthly eCommerce packages. Through this new promotional effort, Jet.com is hoping to enhance its customer engagement process and is likely to continue to increase its status as a tier one eCommerce company.

Chase Acquires WePay Payments Platform


Can big banks be nimble of foot when it comes to FinTech? One giant — JPMorgan Chase & Co. — is taking some definitive steps on that stage. JPMorgan announced today (Oct. 17) it is acquiring payments platform WePay. The combination will create an ecosystem of platform developers and small businesses, powered by WePay’s ability to integrate payments functionality into software and fueled by Chase’s global reach, small business product portfolio and network of 4 million small businesses.

UPS Hits Retailers With Holiday Shipping Fee Surprise


With the holiday shopping season in full swing, retailers are facing a new challenge: extra shipping fees during the busiest weeks. The Wall Street Journal reports that United Parcel Service (UPS) is adding on a surcharge to packages shipped to homes around Black Friday and the week before Christmas in a move to compel retailers to send their orders outside those peak periods. The surcharge has prompted eCommerce retailers to consider other delivery options, such as FedEx or the U.S.

Building A Faster, Safer Network On The Blockchain


When it comes to business, it’s no secret the competition is fierce. But in an increasingly interconnected world, even competing companies need to collaborate. Rival banks and financial institutions (FIs) need to work together to serve customers and transfer money between banks. Car dealers need parts from competing suppliers and manufacturers to keep repair shops and vehicles running without a hitch.

Virtual Cards — Everything You Need to Know

Speaker: Eoin Hession, Controller at Recharge

Even though virtual cards have been part of the payments system for over ten years, there remains a lack of clarity around how they work and their value to companies large and small. In this webinar, Eoin Hession, Controller at Recharge, talks about how his company uses virtual cards in their operations. Sign up today!

Girl Scouts Will Get The Chance To Earn Badges In Cyber Security


Girl Scouts will soon get the chance to earn their first ever cyber security badges. The Huffington Post reports that Girl Scouts can earn the first of 18 cyber security Girl Scout badges beginning in September 2018. The program will reach as many as 1.8 million Girl Scouts in kindergarten through sixth grade and is being developed in a partnership between the Girl Scouts and Palo Alto Networks, a security company.

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Mozilla Patches Critical Bug in Thunderbird


Mozilla has patched one critical vulnerability in its Thunderbird email client along with two bugs rated high. Hacks Vulnerabilities email client Mozilla news reader overflow bug rss RSS feed Thunderbird Thunderbird 52.5.2 Windows XPCOM APIs XUL


Hive Project Taps Into Cryptocurrency For Invoice Finance


The Hive Project, a company that uses cryptocurrency and Ethereum blockchain for trade financing , has launched its platform. The company announced Friday (June 30) that its portal is up and running to link SMEs to trade financing by turning unpaid invoices into tradable assets. Every invoice is assigned a unique fingerprint, the firm said, by tokenizing each bill and linking them onto the blockchain.

Learning About Machine Learning  


And now, the rise of the machines — or, at least, machine learning. This movement has been a long time coming, as artificial intelligence (AI) is moving ever-farther into real-world business applications where once it was too expensive (or too conceptual) to embrace. Through improving technology and decreasing costs, AI and Big Data are now combining to help firms in the financial sector prevent payments fraud.

How to Write OKRs: 45 Effective Examples

Many companies are embracing objectives and key results (OKRs) as the best practice for committing to goals and following through. Objectives are outcomes that reflect current company priorities. Each employee should write OKRs that roll up to larger company goals.

AI/BOTS: AI’s Impact on The Digital Retail Revolution


The digital retail revolution is well underway. Fusing technology into in-store experiences has officially gone mainstream, and retailers are looking for ways to go beyond the traditional mobile app. As we’ve reported in the past, places like Sephora have installed various tablets with embedded augmented reality (AR) features to help customers pick and choose what makeup shades look best on their skin tone.

Why savvy investors should focus on Kazakhstan (and other frontier markets)


If I told you that you could travel back in time, to the end of the nineteenth century, and invest in a country that was recently war-torn, and in great transition, would you do it? You’d need to know that the government was primarily one ethnic group, but immigrants with different languages, customs, and religions were arriving in that country, at unprecedented levels, crowding the cities and looking for jobs.

Mastercard Begins Offering B2B Blockchain Tech


On Friday (Oct. 20), Mastercard announced news that it will be opening up access to its blockchain technology through its developer’s API. Initially, the technology will be made available for B2B transactions, specifically to address the demands of cross-border payments. Mastercard is not the only firm delving into blockchain. The company joins Google, Overstock, Citi and Goldman Sachs in embracing the distributed ledger technology.

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Using AI And Machine Learning To Make Payments Faster, Safer


What do track and field stars, NASCAR drivers and millions of businesses owners around the United States have in common? They all have an appreciation for speed. While more speed may mean more endorsement money for athletes, it means faster settlements and more efficient business for commercial banking customers. With a growth in demand, banks and FinTechs are working to give business owners the speed they need.

Management Techniques for Offshore Employees

This whitepaper looks at the changes and challenges that stem from remote hiring and current HR trends that address them. Download this comprehensive guide to learn more!

Mastercard Taps APIs With An Eye Beyond Plastic


In a classic scene from the 1967 Mike Nichols film The Graduate , protagonist Benjamin Braddock is pulled aside and given advice for his future that can be condensed to a single word: “Plastics.” If the film were remade today, it’s not hard to imagine that one-word piece of advice would be “APIs” instead. To address customers’ needs as commerce goes digital, financial services giant Mastercard is weighing the benefits of APIs over plastic after several decades of heavy investment in the latter.

Belk Works On Building Its New Legacy


In some ways, Belk department store is the last of a dying breed — and not just because it is a department store in the United States in the year 2017. Small and regional — outside of the Southeastern United States, most people haven’t heard of it. But Belk may have something to teach its more nationalized equivalents, because it is doing something that its counterparts nationwide, by and large, are not. It’s growing.

Mobile Commerce To Break $250B By 2020


After something of a slow start, mobile eCommerce is set to make up half of all online sales by the year 2020 — worth nearly $250 billion annually. That forecast comes care of “A Mobile Mindset,” the second volume in the five-part series, “The 2017 UPS Pulse of the Online Shopper.” The UPS-backed report is derived from the input of over 5,189 comScore panelists who made at least two online purchases in a typical three-month period.

2017: The Year Of Digital Disruption For Payments


A lot can happen in a year. What makes one stand out from another? How shall 2017 go down in the history books? Search Google for “2017: the year of…” and it becomes clear that many have seen this as a year of “death” and “disaster.” Others were not so quick to characterize it negatively, trawling the search engine instead for “the year of change.” Still others decided not to get philosophical about it at all, searching merely for “2017: the year of the rooster” or “the year of our Lord.”.

Building Smart with Distributed Teams

Speaker: Sam Ross, General Counsel at Remote; Jenny Bloom, former CFO at Zapier & Darren Murph, Head of Remote at GitLab

It’s clear that distributed teams are here to stay in some form or another. Adapting to this reality means finding the right systems and processes that support remote workers — including international ones — while controlling for risks and communication challenges. Watch to find out more!

Why Regulation Won’t Fix Credit Reporting Agencies


Some of the most memorable television commercials of the 1970s and 1980s were those promoting E. Hutton’s brokerage services. When its tagline, “When E. Hutton talks, people listen,” was spoken in those commercials, everyone in the room stopped, turned to look and listened with rapt attention to the person who uttered those words. The person speaking never revealed what E.

At The POS Of The Future, Consumers Will Pay With Sound


Sound travels at 767 miles per hour, so if you want a faster contactless payment, audio waves aren’t a bad vehicle for it. But harnessing audio waves for payments purposes is easier said than done, because it’s not like developing an app. It represents the development of a whole new technology, and reliability and security are just as important as speed — otherwise, this alternative payment method would be no better than the electronic payment methods that came before it.

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How APIs Are Fostering Collaboration Between FinTechs And Banks


Banks and FinTech companies have a complicated history. To put it mildly, the two sides have not always worked harmoniously together. Why the tension? Both types of institutions contend for the same business in the competitive financial services world.

EY To Use Blockchain For Auto Industry, Ride-Hailing Services


Blockchain, the technology that makes cryptocurrency like bitcoin possible, is moving into the auto and ridesharing markets. According to a news report in Reuters , EY, the consulting unit of Ernst & Young Global, announced Wednesday (Aug. 30) it is launching a blockchain system that will let companies and/or individuals share vehicle ownership more easily. EY said the system, dubbed Tesseract, will launch in the next quarter with a partner the firm did not disclose. .

Telling a Great Story with Data

Speaker: Jeff Epstein, Operating Partner at Bessemer Venture Partners, & Aneal Vallurupalli, CFO at Airbase

Data can create and even change a story — this is a key theme in an enlightening discussion between Jeff Epstein, Operating Partner at Bessemer Venture Partners, and Aneal Vallurupalli, CFO at Airbase. Watch the video to discover how!

The Secret World Of APIs


From an acronym known mostly by programmers in the early 2000s to something thousands of innovators have embraced to ignite numerous innovative solutions, it’s been an electric journey for the application program interface (API).

MasterCard Brings Tap-To-Pay To Public Transit In 80+ Cities


Just in time for the summer travel season, Mastercard has announced a series of partnerships in over 80 cities worldwide, which will enable card carriers to tap to pay for public transit. With a Mastercard in their wallet, more and more people have a go-to transit pass for the city they’re in,” said Ian Slater, senior vice president, enterprise partnerships at Mastercard. “In

Chatbot Tracker: Helping Productivity


Chatbots have moved into a unique position over the past few years. Rather than using chatbots to resolve customer service issues solely on company websites or for inside use at organizations, businesses have begun branching out to help optimize both internal and external organizational needs. While chatbots may be traditionally thought of as the standard instant message chat windows, they have evolved to meet the needs of today’s fast-paced consumer.

How A Bank And A FinTechs Are Jointly Cracking The Code On Financial Inclusion


The favored narrative about banks and FinTech startups is generally not a love story. Usually, it is more of an all-out war story. Banks represent the old way of handling financial services – and in fairness, they carry a lot of responsibilities that deposit-taking institutions don’t necessarily have. Of course, banks have to be run with safety and soundness to protect those deposits, but they also have myriad public mandates, like fair lending, anti-money laundering and customer privacy.

Making A Bigger Impact with Automation

Speaker: Nadia Asoyan, VP of Finance at Trusted Health, and Amer Ali, VP of Finance at Netlify

Learn about the automation mindset behind some of the most efficient companies. Discover how to evaluate accounting software to ensure that your tech stack works for your company’s needs today, and that it will scale into the future. Download today!