ROAM: The Mobile Point of Sale “Invisible Engine”

What's Next In Payments®
5:29 PM EDT September 25th, 2012

When Ingenico appointed Ken Paull as ROAM Data’s new chief executive officer last week, it was making a clear statement: we take mobile seriously.

Market Platform Dynamics CEO Karen Webster spoke with Paull in his first interview as CEO to discuss the expanding mobile payments industry, ROAM’s role with Ingenico and what he plans to focus on in his first few months in charge.

“We see mobile commerce is going in a lot of different directions: it’s in the physical and virtual world, it’s going through small retailers and starting to move up market into large retailers, and it’s happening on POS acceptance side and on the consumer payments side,” Paull said. “Our focus is clearly on POS acceptance side.”

ROAM enters many partnerships as a “white label partner,” but in fact accounts for around 70 percent of the non-Square mobile acceptance industry. As such, Paull said his first priority as CEO is to deliver on the extensive commitments ROAM has made to existing customers.

“You don’t see ROAM’s brand so much out the in market, but for people who are tying to compete against Square and the likes of Square in the market, clearly we’re the largest behind-the-brand technology that’s out there.”

Where does ROAM’s new top executive see mobile payments and point-of-sale headed both now and in the future? Paull said he does not see in mobile and POS two segments that will eventually intersect, but rather the makings of a fully integrated future in which the two industries become one.

“This is not like in the past, where there have been new card types that have come into market, with debit and prepaid and loyalty. There have been new communication types with IP and wireless connectivity; there’s been movement in the past into the eCommerce space. Those were all additional areas of business and growth segments or areas of communication that the industry has gone through,” Paull notes.

“But this is truly a transformation where a lot of today’s business is just moving mobile, and so many merchants and merchants businesses are being impacted by that. … I would not say it’s coexistence, but really morphing the current businesses into a new mobile world.”

To hear Paull and Webster on ROAM’s integration with Ingenico, Paull’s next 100 days and more, listen to the full podcast below.


Ken Paull

Ken has over 20 years in senior management roles in the electronic payments industry including Senior Vice President at RBS Lynk (now WorldPay), Vice President at Triton Systems and General Manager at VeriFone. He was responsible for building and rapidly growing what is now WorldPay’s national account payments division while also directing the turnaround of what had been a declining ATM processing business. While at Triton, the company surpassed NCR as the second largest domestic ATM supplier and also became the global leader in retail ATM deployments. At VeriFone, Ken built their major account, retail division which has become one of the largest segments of their business. Most recently, Ken was ROAM Data’s Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing. Prior to joining ROAM, Ken served on the Board of Directors of Access to Money, as Director of Market Platform Dynamics and President of PAX US. A native of the Boston area, Ken holds a B.S. in Marketing and Communications from Babson College, as well as an MBA in Telecommunications Management from Golden Gate University.

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