OpenWay and Oracle to Redefine Digital Payment Processing in the Cloud

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Brussels, 11 June 2019  

·       OpenWay, a global leader in payment processing software and a Gold level member of Oracle PartnerNetwork (OPN), is announcing the successful testing of its award-winning digital payments platform WAY4 in Oracle Cloud. Financial institutions can use this solution to drive payment innovations of any scale and to optimize their operating and maintenance costs.  

·       Performance testing proved that WAY4 supports small, mid-size and large payment processing volumes in Oracle Cloud. The solution is highly scalable for a broad range of issuers and acquirers: those managing small startup volumes, right up to issuers handling over 10 million card or wallet accounts, or acquirers managing hundreds of thousands of merchants.

Although payment services can open many opportunities for entering the global market, new players have to overcome significant barriers. They must first invest in a secure infrastructure and in an IT team to maintain it. This infrastructure should also be scalable enough to accommodate changing payment processing volumes and allow the launching of new offers.

For some payments players in this situation, running digital payments in the cloud can speed up time-to-market for products and services. This option is especially good for:

  • Companies that prefer to operate their own payment platform without investing in infrastructure ownership in an Infrastructure–as-a-Service (IaaS) model.

  • Startups who are still unable to predict processing volumes and who prefer to outsource their technical infrastructure in a Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) model. For the quickest start possible, they can opt for one of the WAY4 Start cloud solutions with pre-defined products and workflows.

  • Companies that plan to extend their on-premises solution with WAY4 instances in the cloud for testing purposes (ad-hoc resources). 

A WAY4 installation in Oracle Cloud covers the same payment domains as its on-premises equivalent, including card and account management, merchant acquiring, payment gateway, digital wallets, and transaction switching.  

George Bordei, ISV/OEM Account Manager, Oracle: “The test results of the award-winning digital payments platform WAY4 in Oracle Cloud expand the partnership that OpenWay and Oracle have. Companies from the payment services industry can use Oracle Cloud for faster GTM, optimize the TCO and lower the significant barriers that a new company faces without dropping the performance and security standard.

Oracle and OpenWay efforts help companies from the payment services industry to be more competitive and answer faster at the challenging and changing demands of the financial industry.”

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About Oracle PartnerNetwork

Oracle PartnerNetwork (OPN) is Oracle's partner program that provides partners with a differentiated advantage to develop, sell and implement Oracle solutions. OPN offers resources to train and support specialized knowledge of Oracle’s products and solutions and has evolved to recognize Oracle’s growing product portfolio, partner base and business opportunity. Key to the latest enhancements to OPN is the ability for partners to be recognized and rewarded for their investment in Oracle Cloud. Partners engaging with Oracle will be able to differentiate their Oracle Cloud expertise and success with customers through the OPN Cloud program – an innovative program that complements existing OPN program levels with tiers of recognition and progressive benefits for partners working with Oracle Cloud.

OpenWay Club 2019: Adapt, Adopt, and Become an Adept!

OpenWay’s biggest annual event for clients and partners, OpenWay Club, took place in Spain last week. It brought together 94 participants from 30 countries of Europe, Asia, the Middle East, Africa, and Latin America.

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This year we shared best practices and know-hows for adaptive organization, new payment revenue streams, multi-currency cards, cloud processing, financial inclusion and more. The agenda featured not only OpenWay speakers, but also our client companies – Enfuce, SmartNet, Areeba; our partner Oracle; and European experts in digital banking and domain-driven design.

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Thank you all who participated in OpenWay Club 2019! Our team appreciated every minute of having you as our guest in Girona!

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Meeting everyone’s expectations is a tough goal but we keep trying enthusiastically.  

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The event photos, videos and interviews will appear on our Facebook page shortly. Some great portraits are published already, so follow the page and stay tuned!

Best wishes,

OpenWay Team

OW Club



Get a Two-in-One Deal: 3-D Secure v2 Compliance and an In-House Acquiring Platform

Now financial institutions can hit two major milestones at the same time: become compliant with 3DS v2 and launch their own acquiring engine. This is made possible byWAY4, a top-ranked digital payments platform by OpenWay.

There is no doubt about it: 3DS v2 is here to stay. All merchants and issuers have their own regional deadlines to support 3DS v2 specification by 2019 and 2020. For some companies, the new security mandate for online payments may be a good reason to overhaul their current business model and reconsider their position in the payment processing value chain. A new strategy can be to expand into a full-fledged acquiring business or to bring critical business technologies in-house.All the above can be achieved on WAY4, a top-ranked digital payments platform by OpenWay.

By using WAY4 3-D Secure MPI (3DS Server), acquirers can become compliant with 3DS v2. At the moment, OpenWay is among 5% of vendors on the EMVCo list that have 3DS v2 certification. WAY4 3-D Secure MPI (3DS Server) is a stand-alone solution for seamless online authentication on the acquiring domain*. It gives acquirers all the benefits of 3DS v2 compliance, which are numerous. Just a few: a wider range of shared data makes risk identification more accurate, increases authorization rates, and enables new authentication methods like biometrics. Cardholders see annoying pop-up windows far less often due to the seamless authentication process. With the improved customer experience, merchants get higher conversion rates, reduced false declines and a decreased cart abandonment rate by up to 70% (according to the report “Frictionless Experience with Verified by Visa”). 

Beyond delivering 3DS compliance, WAY4 allows financial institutions to launch an in-house payment gateway and acquiring on the same technological platform. Companies can develop various payment and merchant acquiring services, including POS/mPOS acquiring, e-commerce, DCC/MCP, and merchant wallets.  

Acquirers and PSP saround the world are already using the WAY4 platform to onboard merchants digitally, offer dynamic pricing and online settlement, launch new payment methods, expand geographies, start digital wallets and loyalty programmes, and much more. Running a payment business on a single WAY4 platform helps financial companies optimize their costs and scale up their merchant portfolio by offering customized services for different merchant segments.

“Many of our clients have used WAY4 as a basis for digital transformation of their business. For instance, a traditional DCC provider expanded into a full-fledge merchant acquiring and POS switching in six months on WAY4 and now serves lucrative brands such as Burberry, Calvin Klein, Furla, etc. Another example is how a startup that migrated to WAY4 became a global cross-border acquirer and today processes payments in 188 countries.” Dmitry Yatskaer, CTO at OpenWay.

* For issuers who use WAY4,OpenWay offers WAY4 3-D Secure ACS that complies with 3DS v2.

Leading Bank in Uzbekistan Builds a Full-fledged Payment Processing Center on WAY4

Uzpromstroybank, one of the largest banks in Uzbekistan, is partnering with OpenWay to modernize its IT infrastructure.

Uzpromstroybank is implementing OpenWay solutions to invigorate its existing card business and to develop new products.  This project significantly improves customer service, cuts operational costs and helps the bank reach out towards new business opportunities.

OpenWay and Uzpromstroybank are modernizing the bank’s in-house IT infrastructure for issuing and acquiring plastic cards (Mastercard, Visa, UnionPay International, JCB) and deferred debit cards, including virtual ones. The project will also update the IT infrastructure behind the bank’s 3D Secure e-commerce services and contactless payments.

"Partnership with OpenWay allows us to increase the reliability, security, speed and performance of the IT platform that processes the bank’s plastic cards. In doing so, the bank can expand the range of services offered to customers at any time and in any place," said Bakhram Sultanov, Director of the department for retail service development at Uzpromstroybank.

”Working in OpenWay allows me to see things happening which you do not believe” - interview with Serge Robyns, Head of Pre-sales, OpenWay

Watch the interview with Serge Robyns – Head of Pre-sales, OpenWay. 

In the video Serge shares his experience of working in OpenWay and gives advice to people seeking to build career in Fintech.

Serge Robyns, Head of Pre-Sales and Maria Vinogradova, Director of Strategy and Market Intelligence at OpenWay

Serge Robyns, Head of Pre-Sales and Maria Vinogradova, Director of Strategy and Market Intelligence at OpenWay

Is your fuel card system future-proofed? A checklist for CEOs and CIOs

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Everyone loves changes, nobody wants to be changed. Payments are one of the most dynamic areas in the fuel retail business, encompassing how customers pay at fuel stations, how fleet companies control their fuel expenses, and how merchants motivate customers to pay faster and buy more. At some point, to meet the ever-changing customer expectations, you have to look at your current fuel payment system and ask yourself: ‘Is it still fit-for-purpose? Do we need to change?’         

Your system probably fits the needs of your business now and for a couple of years into the future. But will this still be the case in 2022? We encourage you to challenge yourself. Is your current system for managing fleet card payments ready for your “next big thing”? 

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This checklist was designed by Walter Van Huyck, an expert in fleet card systems who has led the development and marketing of international fleet card systems for major fuel retailers, such as Lukoil and ConocoPhillips. Now Walter works as Business Relationship Manager at OpenWay, a software provider of fleet card issuing and acceptance solutions. 

CEO checklist
  1. Does your system support business growth? 

This is the most important question. When you expand cross-border, your fuel card system should support multi-currency payments and be compliant with local accounting regulations. If you acquire or merge with another fuel company, the system should be able to handle multiple entities, with streamlined card payments operations across all business units. Furthermore, if you have a successful year and double your customer base, your system should be able to process increased volumes without issues. Modern systems provide scalability and do not limit your growth opportunities. 

2. Are you flexible enough to provide the best experience for your customers? 

As a fuel retailer, you want the best service experience at your petrol stations for corporate drivers and individual customers alike. They deserve the latest payment innovations you can offer. But if your card system or service provider is lagging behind, you lose control over how and when you roll out new features.

For example, real-time payments have become a game changer for corporates. Your system should be able to check the limits, assess risks, calculate the best price, and apply discounts – all online and in real-time. Fleet managers expect to see the updated balance just moments after the top-up.

For individuals, mobile and wearable payments can be a good differentiator. If drivers prefer to pay without leaving their car, then petrol stations should be able to accept this type of payment – whether it is QR-code, NFC, or in-app based. Sometimes, such innovations bring even more value to the business. One of our customers now delivers a fuel card directly to the driver’s mobile app. Users pay at stations by scanning a barcode. No plastic card is needed. They can check the balance and amount available on their account, limits on petrol types and car services in real-time. For the fuel company, it has brought significant savings on plastic card issuance and eased the pressure on customer support staff.  

3. Is your business compliant? 

If you operate in Europe, your system supports the IFSF standards as a matter of course. But recently there have been a few regulation changes that do not apply to the fuel business directly but mandate changes in business processes around customer data and the security of payments, e.g. GDPR and PSD2. Can your system adopt theses new requirements easily?     

4. How does card management fit in your business ecosystem?

B2B customers expect to be onboarded just in hours or days, not months. Also, they want to perform most fuel card operations via online portals and mobile apps. At the same time, fleet managers prefer to receive reports on fuel expenses in near real-time. This means that the whole business should work as a well-oiled machine, without interruptions and bottlenecks. This can be achieved if the core payment platform is truly online and integrates with other business-crucial components through standard, open APIs. This delivers business automation and enhances customer service. 

5. Do you have enough control over business development and service quality? 

Want to set up a new rule for price calculation for VIPs or launch a new card for tourists? How long will it take for the IT team to satisfy your request? Also, controlling service quality can be a pain point for companies that rely on third-parties to run their card business. For some types of fleet companies guaranteeing 100% service stability is a must. As an IT director of a major fuel network that uses our platform puts it: “It is not the end of the world, if a person can’t pay at the supermarket because of system downtime. But ambulances can’t be kept waiting at our stations. It may cost a life and it will definitely cause fines and reputational damage for us”.    

CIO checklist
  1. How quickly can you support requests from business?  

 Normally, a new product feature should be a matter of configuration, not a heavy customization exercise. And your team should be able to do this without vendor involvement. Sometimes new functionality can be a challenge if the current system was tailor-made for your company. You cannot always benefit from developments made for other users. So, a standardized off-the-shelf solution could be the answer.   

2. Calculate how much money you spend on payment systems integration 

Maybe it is high time to optimize the architecture to remove redundancy and complexity. For example, some of our customers manage card issuing, acquiring, and transaction switching for several countries on a single platform. This centralization delivers maintenance and vendor management savings. If you migrate data from legacy systems, the new system should be able to accommodate customer data, so that unification does not cause a loss of valuable information. 

3. Do you have enough control over your system? 

In-house vs. outsourced operations? There is no right answer here. An in-house system means agility and full control over your business, which comes together with significant investment in the team and infrastructure. On the other hand, outsourcing card operations means almost no levers of influence on the product roadmap and service stability. A good alternative can be to run your system in the cloud, thus cutting infrastructure costs while still retaining control over the product.  

Summary 

Assessing your card payment systems is not an exercise to be undertaken daily or even monthly. But some factors, such as a business expansion strategy targeting new geographies or customer segments can trigger the change and open new doors.  

Our experts will be glad to share with you how fuel companies can drive a better customer experience on WAY4, the leading digital payments platform.

Leading Chilean Processor and OpenWay To Power Banco Consorcio’s Credit Card Business

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Santiago, April, 2019

Banco Consorcio has successfully launched a credit card business with Nexus, the major processor in Chile. The Nexus platform is built on WAY4, a top-ranked digital payments software provided by OpenWay. 

Banco Consorcio, founded in 2009, specializes in consumer and commercial loans, mortgages, deposits, real estate financing and other services. It is a member of the Chilean financial conglomerate Consorcio Financiero.

To support the conglomerate’s strategy of financial development and expansion, Banco Consorciodecided to launch consumer card issuing. The bank received issuer accreditation for credit and debit Visa cards at the end of 2017 and carefully reviewed possible processing partners to kick-off its new business line. Banco Consorcio chose Nexus thanks to its market leadership, innovative approach to product development and highly flexible card management platform.

Nexus serves more than 60% of the credit card market in Chile. Among its customers are 15 issuers, including banks, local and international financial institutions and private label retail schemes. The company is gradually migrating its card portfolios to the WAY4 system, which helps it to compete more strongly in the Chilean payments market and meet constantly changing customer needs. Nexus can maintain high volumes and customize products in a fast and cost-efficient way on the new system.WAY4 also efficiently processes data to personalize services and ensure a better payment experience for Nexus clients. 

About Nexus

  • Nexus is the leading credit card processing company in Chile and has been in the market since 1997, offering services to almost all banks and retail institutions in the country. 

  • The company´s main core business areas are: transaction authorization, card management processing, online channels, card personalization, payment security (including fraud prevention) and business intelligence to support issuers’ strategies. 

  • During 2018 Nexus processed more than 9 million accounts and 4 billion online transactions. 

  • At Nexus we are driven by our purpose: provide great payment experiences every single second of the day – immediate, easy, smart and safe.

Transform your card business: meet OpenWay at the 11th Global Banking Innovation Forum

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Ready to transform your card issuing and merchant acquiring business? 

OpenWay, a top-ranked digital payment software vendor, invites you to visit its stand at the 11th Global Banking Innovation Forum & Expo. Come watch our demos and learn about how WAY4 solutions can kick-start the digitalization of your card business. 

Visit us and get exclusive insights from our experts on:

  • Omni-channel merchant acquiring 

  • New card issuing services

  • Digital wallets 

  • PSD2 compliance

  • Cross-border payments 

 Come to the panel discussion!

  • On April 11 at 11.20am OpenWay will lead the discussion on Technological Disruption & Innovation in Banking among the experts of the European payments industry

We are looking forward to seeing you there!

Your Digital Payment Strategy in the Middle East Deserves a Great Platform. Meet us at #SeamlessME2019!

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10-11 April 2019

Seamless Middle East, Dubai International Convention & Exhibition Centre, Sheikh Saeed Hall 2, stand #E60

OpenWay, a top-ranked digital payment software vendor, invites you to visit its stand (#E60) at Seamless Middle East, the biggest event in the region focusing on payments. 

Watch demos of our solutions and gain valuable insights on where the payment world is heading. What kind of technology should be backing up your digital payment strategy? How can you tell if it is agile enough to support future growth?

We present WAY4, an open payment processing platform, that leading financial institutions in the Middle East and across the globe use to run their processing business. 

Come meet our OpenWay experts if:

  • Your company is running an RFI / RFP process for card and merchant management system, transaction switch, e-commerce gateway, or wallet 

  • You are searching for new ways to keep consumers and merchants engaged though targeted products and services delivered on time, with flexible pricing based on transaction context

  • Your want to find solutions to increase revenue streams in card issuing, acquiring, and payment processing. 

We looking forward to seeing you there!

OpenWay and Gemalto Accelerate the Security of Digital Payments

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  •  OpenWay, a global leader in digital payment processing software, today announced the successful integration and compatibility of its WAY4 payment processing platform with the Gemalto SafeNet Payment Hardware Security Module (Luna EFT 2). This means that processors, card issuers and merchant acquirers that are already using this HSM do not need to invest in additional cryptographic infrastructure when migrating to WAY4.

  • The Gemalto SafeNet Payment Hardware Security Module’s broad payment security functionality, flexibility and high-end physical and logical security architecture, along with PCI-HSM certification, makes it one of the most comprehensive encryption solutions on the market. It can be used for both in-house and cloud deployments of the WAY4 processing system. 

Gemalto’s SafeNet Payment HSM also helps to ensure the security of payment processing environments for credit and debit cards, e-wallets, as well as online and mobile payment applications. To protect contactless mobile payments, it manages the entire cryptographic process from card enrollment and provisioning to tokenization and transaction processing. The solution specifically helps payment providers adhere to EMV security standards on both issuing and acquiring sides. 

“As the growth of digital payments, specifically mobile payments, continues to accelerate, solutions that provide security, flexibility and cost savings will be in high demand. We believe that the SafeNet Luna EFT Payment HSM will provide WAY4 users with the scalability and flexibility they require when operating in the fast-moving digital payments market,” said Todd Moore, SVP Encryption Products at Gemalto

“Seamless security of transactions is on top of mind for our customers. For many years OpenWay has been relying on the skills and expertise of the Gemalto’s payment security team, and now we’ve extended the range of compatible HSM devices with the SafeNet Luna Payment HSM. Our collaboration with Gemalto enables our customers to explore new business opportunities, such as online and mobile payments, in a more secure and cost-efficient way,” said Dmitry Yatskaer, CTO at OpenWay

WAY4 is an open, omni-channel digital payment and card processing platform. It supports digital wallets, private label and branded card issuing, as well as merchant acquiring, financial switching and channel management. WAY4 is deployed by tier-1 banks and payment processors across the globe. OpenWay has a reputation for innovation, being one of the first in the world to support OEM-wallets, payment schemes tokenization, and the 3-D Secure 2.x protocol.  

Gemalto and OpenWay solutions undergo regular audits to meet the requirements of PCI Security Standards Council (PCI-HSM and PA-DSS certificates respectively) and are certified by major international payment schemes.

Payment trends in Italy from OpenWay: how to transform and grow your payment business

Il Salone dei Pagamenti Payvolution 2018 

From your point of view, what are the trends you are observing in the Italian payments sector? What value can OpenWay create for it?

I see two co-existing trends. Italy is known for large payment players who achieved scale through consolidation. It is not finished yet, as true giants are being created now. At the same time, new start-ups are appearing on the market. They are small but keep on challenging the status quo.

OpenWay can offer solutions to both very large players and start-ups. 

For big players, we have more than ten years’ experience of successfully migrating huge organizations in Europe from legacy systems. Our track record includes projects with equensWorldline, SIX Payment Services, Nets, Raiffeisen and others. 

For start-ups, we bring value as an experienced partner. Rather than developing things themselves, they can rely on our WAY4 solutions and create unique business cases. An example is Credorax, who migrated from a third party processor to our WAY4 platform – and has grown 10 times within three years.

For the large-scale projects what are the most important factors to consider?

Choosing the right platform is important, for large and small players alike. To move the company’s capabilities to a different level, ensure that you do not replace “like for like”. And think about consolidating the different parts of the infrastructure. Simple, online, holistic – keep your solution like that.

Huge projects bring huge risks. You need to decide early if you go alone or with an integrator. OpenWay has experience working with integrators on huge projects, even for state-owned financial institutions. Recently, National Bank of Greece has received an award as the best IT project for digital transformation on WAY4. This project was implemented by OpenWay and Accenture together.

“Big bang” data migration can be harmful for large institutions. You have to minimize the impact on your end customers. We apply the rollback strategies, parallel runs and all these instruments that help.

Regarding payment revenues, what are the strategies to grow?

Indeed, it is very important to find new revenue streams, particularly for issuers as card interchange fees are declining.

One potential area for new business models is around data. Collecting data is hard because of GDPR. We utilize data that runs alongside a payment transaction. If you want to help merchants personalize their promotions, WAY4 can process transaction data up to level III and track the customer payment history. Using this data, it calculates bonus points, applies discounts and targeted offers.

You can create more of a closed-loop and semi-closed-loop schemes to add value to your merchants, while become more independent of the large payment schemes and retaining more of the interchange. 

 Consider new strategies such as offering consumer loans at the Point of Sale. This could actually help you bypass constraints of the schemes, while still working together with retailers and helping them to grow their business.

Dmitry Yatskaer, Chief Technology Officer, OpenWay at Il Salone Dei Pagamenti - Payvolution

Dmitry Yatskaer, Chief Technology Officer, OpenWay at Il Salone Dei Pagamenti - Payvolution

Open Banking Today: 4 Case Studies from European and Global Leaders

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How have Netflix and Amazon thrown a challenge to banking services worldwide? How can your business expand during the era of Open Banking? What makes up a successful Open Banking platform?

Julian Farley, Business Development Manager at OpenWay, answers these and other questions during his presentation at MoneyLive Summit in London. Learn what kind of Open Banking transformations with WAY4 are taking place and how this is giving our clients the competitive edge in a new era.

Clik to Launch in Cambodia in 2019

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  • Cambodian startup Clik raised more than $2 million before its 2019 launch

  • Observers say that Clik is a good addition to Cambodia’s fintech scene

  • While Clik is primarily an analytics app, its CEO says that the company respects the privacy of would-be clients  

 A new payments app is about to enter the Cambodian market and it raised over $2 million before its scheduled launch. Clik is poised to launch a new payment gateway and aggregator and many are said to be excited about the event.

The only downside about the report, according to fintech observers in Phnom Penh, is the fact that there is no mention of overseas transfer rates or that users can transfer money internationally through the app.

The good news is, the app will make transferring payments between consumers and businesses more seamless. According to the fintech, Clik users can use the app to pay for goods and all they need to do is to input their credit cards or e-wallets into the app.

“Our app will be very easy to use, much easier than a payment terminal with 25 buttons on it”, explained Clik CEO and founder Matthew Tippetts while talking to Southeast Asia Globe. “The consumer will have a wide array of payment capabilities in one place – simple, seamless and safe to use”, he added.

The company notes that the app is a useful addition to the set of tools that businesses have. Tippetts said that merchants can use the app to grow their business. Clik is described by Tippetts as: “a new data company” driven by analytics. Its main purpose is to “enable offline businesses to have the same data as online businesses so that they can grow”.

According to Clik executives, the app will be aggregating user transactions and will provide merchant partners with basic data analytics. The latter will provide businesses with better insights on marketing techniques. Merchants will have the capability to offer a better and a more personalised experience to their target market as well.

The app attracted the attention of Limestone Technology, an international business headed by SeedIn’s founder Eddie Lee. It also caught the attention of Openway, a software vendor. Investments from these companies, along with money put in by a number of Cambodia’s angel investors, made it possible for Clik to raise over $2 million. The capital was raised long before the business’ scheduled launch. The company is reportedly planning to raise another million by early 2019.

Clik is primarily a data analytics app, but Tippetts made it clear that the company respects the privacy of its would-be clients. He noted that companies like Clik “need to be ethical” when collecting data, adding that he will make sure that the app is compliant with all of the data collection laws in Cambodia.

In an interview, Tippetts said: “We definitely aren’t giving out individuals’ personal data, and we’re not selling or giving any information to third parties.”

Find out more about the payment and remittance industry here.

Source: FXcompared Magazine

Equity Bank Gets Top Award for Pushing Highest Visa Card Volumes in 2018

PolyCarp Igathe, Managing Director, Equity Bank

PolyCarp Igathe, Managing Director, Equity Bank

For the second year running, Equity Bank has scooped the Visa Top Acquirer Award at the 2018 edition of the Visa Awards. The award was issued to the Bank for pushingthe highest Visa card volumes in 2018.

Over the last year, Equity Bank has made significant investments in its merchant acquiring infrastructure, which resulted in a 34% growth in the volumes being transacted by the Bank’s merchants, from Ksh. 40.3 billion in Q3 2017 to Ksh.54 billion, according to the Q3 2018 financial results.

Equity currently has 14,642 merchants with some of the most notable being Naivas, Tuskys, Oil Libya, Total Service Stations, the Intercontinental Hotel, Quickmart Supermarkets, Simba Corporation Limited, Kenya Airways, KWS, the Nairobi Hospital, Chandarana Supermarkets, Furniture Palace, Tamarind Hotel , Text Book Centre, among others. 

Commenting on the award, Equity Bank’s Managing Director, Polycarp Igathe noted that the award was a result of the Bank’s contribution to a cashless economy. 

“We are elated to receive the award, because it is evidence of our efforts towards the facilitation of cashless transactions, giving customers convenience and frictionless experience across the region by enhancing our card and payments processing services,” he said. 

In addition to Visa, Equity Bank acquires American Express, MasterCard, China Union Pay, JCB Diners Club and  & Discover.

Source: Equity Bank Kenya

Would-Be Unicorn Seeks to Undercut Banks With Secure Cloud

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As startups and investors gather in the most innovative country in the world, a financial newcomer wants to become a unicorn by providing faster and cheaper ways of processing credit card transactions.

There’s just one catch: it needs to persuade security-conscious clients to let their financial data be handled by a cloud service managed by an American retail giant.

“Our biggest challenge is the customer mindset,” said Monika Liikamaa, the 43-year-old chairman of Enfuce Financial Services Oy, a Finnish payment services provider based just a 20-minute drive from the headquarters of Nokia.

On Tuesday, she’ll be speaking at a popular startup meetup in Helsinki called Slush, which is expected to attract a crowd of more than 20,000 entrepreneurs, investors and nerds.

Banks are generally reluctant to let industry entrants run their infrastructure, and few fintechs dare try. Enfuce, which was founded by local industry veterans, bucks the trend.

In its first full year in business, in 2017, it made 3.3 million euros ($3.7 million) in sales, generating a profit of just under 300,000 euros. One of its first major clients was Finnish gas station chain ST1, which wanted a fully fledged credit card system, including support for Apple Pay. Enfuce is now targeting global sales of 600 million euros and a valuation exceeding $1 billion by 2025.

Amazon Cloud

Its basic business idea is to run a credit card system without owning expensive computer servers, which can quickly become obsolete. Instead, transactions and card data are hosted in commercially available servers owned by Amazon Web Services and located inside the European Union. That allows the system to instantly and easily adapt to demand spikes, such as on payday, while keeping costs in check.

The data is backed up every second, so when things go wrong, the customers’ cards stop working for just that second -- meaning most would never notice an outage. The services are secure and fully compliant with regulatory requirements, Liikamaa said.

The company acknowledges it faces a tough job convincing potential customers that third-party servers can be as safe as computers owned by the banks. Still, Enfuce has found that while banks are often intrigued, their compliance departments tend to put on the brakes.

“To some extent, the fear of cyber crime may be an issue” when it comes to the acceptance of new technologies, said Nina Rudanko, co-founder of industry organization Fintech Finland.

Liikamaa insists that some form of outsourcing makes sense.

Banks are so busy turning themselves into IT companies these days that they haven’t stopped to properly think about whether that infrastructure could be provided more cost-effectively and quickly by someone else, she said.

New World

“I wish Nordic banks dared to co-operate more,” Liikamaa said. “The banks’ business shouldn’t be about running IT. Banks should worry about supporting their customers in figuring out how to save and invest, buy a home and make payments. We can take care of the infrastructure.”

Enfuce’s wishes may soon be granted.

Although traditional banks tend to be “monolithic,” as Aleksi Grym, an adviser on digitization at the Bank of Finland, put it, the biggest lender in the Nordic region welcomes competition in the banking infrastructure space.

“My hope is that some of those technology companies that try to go into the core banking space" are successful, said Paul Bari, chief information officer and head of technology at Nordea Bank Abp. “Competition is healthy.”

Source: Bloomberg

Warm Season’s Greetings from OpenWay!

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It looks like everyone is making wishes for the next year, and so is OpenWay. Continuing the valuable, inspiring partnership with you is on top of our wishlist.

Together we can discover new ways of reshaping the payments world. AI, QR, NFC, Wallet, API, Cloud – let’s play with all those trendy letters and turn them into our own powerful statements in 2019!
 
Season’s Greetings and Happy Holidays!

Enfuce Financial Services - A Reflection on 2018

Enfuce is a Finland based forerunner in cloud-based financial services, with focus on the future of payment solutions and a global mindset.

Enfuce is a Finland based forerunner in cloud-based financial services, with focus on the future of payment solutions and a global mindset.

OpenWay is proud to have Enfuce Financial Services as a partner!

Denise Koskinen, CEO - Enfuce Financial Services:

I believe in reflecting on achievements, to be able to set new and greater goals for Enfuce. Therefore, I will end this year by reflecting on our achievements during 2018. Our mission for the year was to prepare the company for future growth. To enable that growth, we decided on a few objectives to guide us and to push us further.

These objectives were the following:

  • Explore the idea of an Open Banking platform further, for a more comprehensive offering for the payment industry.

  • Further development of our Digital Payment Platform

  • Brand awareness – who are we and what do we do?

Further development of our Digital Payment Platform

In the beginning of 2018 as we were focusing our ambitions to go beyond the Nordic countries, we also saw the need to prepare our own digital payment platform. This work has taken most of our time and efforts this year, but it has all been worth it! Today we are proud to say that we have partnered up with OpenWay, who will enable a global growth for us with their Way4 solution. 

The two most important things in running a Digital Payment Platform are hygiene factors such as high availability and PCI DSS compliance. When we go beyond hygiene, then it’s all about supporting customers in the rapid pace of change in the financial services industry – a change that is mostly due to the digital disruption we are facing.

Today, we have both hygiene and business advantage in place to support both existing and future customers of ours. Something I feel very proud and confident in!

Read more: Enfuce Official Website

Watch New Video: Innovation Through Collaboration at OpenWay Club Venice 2018

OpenWay Club is a perfect platform for exchanging ideas about how to grow and profit in financial services. We started 5 years ago as a small community of OpenWay team and WAY4 users, yet have grown into a international network of industry experts. Club members meet to discuss new business models and digital payment strategies. 

In 2018, the leading banks and processors from all over the world networked with each other during the interactive design thinking workshops and discussed how to leverage the latest WAY4 solutions for business growth. The innovation sessions were facilitated by our special guest, Eugene Shteyn, an expert in scalable innovations from Stanford University.  

How To Join The OpenWay Club?

If you have ideas and insights into how to significantly improve the customer experience or generate new revenue streams in payments, please contact us. Participation in the OpenWay Club is generally by invitation-only or on a member-nominate-member basis, however we are open to welcoming new faces. 

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OpenWay Met Fuel Card Leaders at IFSF 2018

IFSF conference

OpenWay took part in the IFSF annual conference, one of the most important global events for the retail fuel sector. Key fuel industry players met to discuss top business and technology trends impacting retail fuel and convenience store operations. The conference in Hamburg, Germany on November 6-7 attracted over 100 delegates. The hot topics this year were enhanced customer experience, open payment infrastructure, and fleet business digitalization.

IFSF (International Forecourt Standards Forum) is a community dedicated to enabling technology standards to benefit automotive fuel and energy retailers. OpenWay, a developer of the end-to-end digital payments software for fleet card issuing and acquiring, holds a technical associate membership of the IFSF. This allows us to collaborate with the IFSF working parties on developing and incorporating the standards into our solutions.

“We believe that the IFSF organization will make the fuel industry implementations easier thanks to its ambition for a single standard. For OpenWay, this conference is another good opportunity to interact with different actors across the industry to get valuable insights and streamline our technical communications. The IFSF membership helps to position our company as a technological leader in the fuel payment industry,”- comments Frederic Richel, consultant at OpenWay.

The conference is a good opportunity for representatives of global fuel companies, technical suppliers, card acquiring processors, and consulting companies to network. The following industry bodies also met during the conference: 

  • Conexxus: a non-profit, member-driven technology organization dedicated to the development and implementation of standards, technologies innovation and advocacy for the convenience store and petroleum market.

  • NEXO: an open, global association dedicated to removing the barriers present in today’s fragmented global card payment acceptance ecosystem.

  • OMG: one of the largest and long-standing non-for-profit, open-membership consortia developing and maintaining computer industry specifications.

  • NACS: the National Association of Convenience Stores & Fuel Retailing, serves the convenience and fuel retailing industry by providing industry knowledge, connections and advocacy to ensure the competitive viability of its members' businesses. 

The main discussions focused on the technologies that can help to create a superior customer experience in fleet payments:

  • Frictionless payments such as “1-click” button, recurring, payment method alternative available, mobile checkout

  • Invisible security: moving from PIN capture to biometrics

  • Value-added services through new technologies such as voice assistance, cashier-less stores, AI for service personalization and fraud prevention. 

During the conference the targeted workgroups elaborated on the readiness of the current infrastructure for open payments and digitalization. Now IFSF is working on the standard for APIs for fuel stock management on the OAS 3.0 framework, EMV fleet tags, an acceptance protocol for tokenization and wallets, and a MIG (Message Implementation Guide) similar to the NEXO standard of the ISO 20022 protocol. Security workgroups discussed the new approaches to handling customer data. With GDPR now in force more data is classified as sensitive, which is moving the industry to a new security level, such as AES 256 encryption.


WAY4 Fleet Cards is an integrated software solution developed by OpenWay for end-to-end fleet cards issuing and acquiring. It is designed for fleet card operators that are willing to transform their card platform and grow business locally and globally. The WAY4 Fleet Cards comprises:

  • One modular platform for end-to-end fleet card lifecycle management: issuing, acquiring, transaction switching, authorizing, invoicing, settlement, reporting and digital channels;

  • Support of various types cards: fleet, payment, loyalty, cobranded and combined, both open loop and private label; 

  • Embedded value-added services for fleet cardholders based on customer data analysis, loyalty programs, tokenization and mobile payments, wallets and other alternative payment methods.