Checkout Features, Visa Interchange Rates, Gaana's Music Service Top This Week's News

The Weekender

It’s the end of the workweek, and the PYMNTS Weekender is here to make sure you didn’t miss anything with the latest in payments and commerce news. We have deep dives into eCommerce checkout features, as well as a report on Visa interchange rates and Gaana’s music service in India.

Top News

Report: Visa Eyes Biggest Interchange Fee Revamp In A Decade

Visa is proposing to change its interchange rates in ways that would differ according to transactions and merchant classification. The changes were outlined in a document sent to banks by the payments firm and would be the most sweeping structural change in a decade. The rates refer to the rates that United States-based merchants pay to accept Visa cards.

Mastercard CEO Pushes Back Against National Payments Systems

Mastercard CEO Ajay Banga is very much against attempts to split the Global Payments Systems into national domains. He said per reports, “The economic cost of building siloed systems in a world where citizens travel globally is really stupid, and where crime travels globally is even more stupid, and where technology is completely global is even three times more stupid.”

India’s Gaana Streaming Service Far Surpasses Apple, Spotify

India has access to Apple Music and Spotify, but it’s the country’s homegrown Gaana that is getting the largest share of listeners. Gaana — Hindi for “song” — tapped into grassroots strategy and budget prices to take on rivals. It now counts 152 million monthly subscribers — 50 percent of the worldwide customer base of Spotify.

Mastercard, Pine Labs And The Global Buy Now, Pay Later Explosion

A genuine sea of change is rising in terms of how merchants want to interact with their shoppers and how consumers want to manage their transactions. And it is something one can observe all over the world in a variety of forms. Most recently, one can see it in India where Mastercard announced an investment and new partnership with Pine Labs.

Stripe Powers Digital, In-Store Payments For Lightspeed Retail, Restaurant Customers

Lightspeed, the Canadian global point-of-sale (POS) and eCommerce company, is teaming up with Silicon Valley payments platform Stripe to advance in-store and online payments for retailers and restaurants in the U.S. and Canada. Lightspeed incorporated Stripe Connect — the platform payment product of Stripe — and Stripe Terminal, the firm’s programmable POS.

Why Consumers Are Firing Traditional Retailers

“Jobs to be done” — a theory popularized by the late Harvard Business School Professor Clayton Christensen — is the idea that shoppers don’t buy items, but they hire them to perform a task they need done. Extending that analogy to retail, one could look at the data on the decline of mall and retail store foot traffic, among other factors, and conclude that consumers aren’t hiring brick-and-mortar retailers to get their shopping jobs done the way they did at one time. But it’s more than that. Consumers are firing physical retailers from the jobs they held years and decades before.

Trackers and Reports

NEW REPORT: Merchants Up Their Digital Checkout Game In The Age Of Amazon                     

Consumer spending hit a high of $880 billion in Q4 2019, with online sales comprising 15 percent of total expenditure — higher than ever recorded — and smooth eCommerce checkouts. Retailers that sell products and services online have been slowly, but steadily, removing payment frictions and improving user experience to boost conversion rates. They have done so primarily by adding checkout features like refund policies or free shipping.

Breaking Batch (Payments): BNP Paribas On APIs And Making B2B Payments Faster 

Financial institutions are using application programming interfaces (APIs) to offer services to their business clients that can help them stay competitive, including access to rich transactional data and real-time payment rails. Banks are also opening their APIs to FinTech firms, enabling the latter to create a flurry of new solutions for business customers.

In a feature story, Charlotte Hausemer, vice president of innovation and product development for trade and treasury solutions Americas at BNP Paribas, explains how banks can use APIs to offer functions to their corporate clients that enable rapid payments and more precise cash-position management. 

Delta Galil On Why Buy Now, Pay Later Is Changing The Fashion Industry 

The multibillion-dollar fashion industry moves fast, and those retailers that do not or cannot adapt are quickly left behind. The advent of worldwide online commerce has only made competition in this space more challenging, and for that reason, brands have to employ creative tactics to ensnare customers with their choice of brands.

The use of alternative payment tools, like buy now, pay later (BNPL), could be one method for fashion retailers to entice customers, said Geoff Staff, vice president of retail and eCommerce for Delta Galil Industries, in a recent PYMNTS interview. These solutions could also inspire customers to make pricier or aspirational purchases that they may have otherwise passed by.

Fun, Cool and Otherwise Interesting

Cybercrime’s New Stomping Grounds: Smart Cities

Futurists and smart technology boosters have been touting the inevitable rise of the smart city for the past five years. And, as former Google CEO Larry Page noted after Alphabet-owned Sidewalk Labs finally made an agreement with Toronto for a smart city pilot program — the city of tomorrow will change how consumers live in ways predictable and not.

While much is still under development and thus unknown about exactly how the smart city will work, there is sadly an unfortunate possibility that cybercriminals are waiting in the wings to begin laying virtual siege to infrastructure that the high-tech, highly responsive urban areas envision for the future.

Why the Goldman-Amazon Bet On SMB Loans Is No Sure Thing

Alphabet, Google’s parent, reported fourth-quarter results that displayed sustained gains in YouTube as well the as core search businesses, while cloud outpaced the growth rate of those core operations. Net revenues arrived at $46 billion, which missed the Street by roughly $790 million. And Google Search revenues gained 16.7 percent to $27.2 billion. 

Coronavirus Threatens To Disrupt eCommerce Supply Chain

Could eCommerce — in China, yes, but also well beyond that country’s borders — be among the casualties of the coronavirus? Over a month into what is a spreading health concern, the consumer, on a global stage, has proved resilient — at least into the conclusion of January. Caution, however, is beginning to show, and pockets of weakness may spread.

Google Launches Mobile Plan Browse, Recharge Feature In India

For Google — and Google Pay, especially — India’s continued push into digital payments offers a significant greenfield opportunity as well as a possible roadmap to help shape go-to-market efforts in other parts of the globe. And, after multiple months of new service and product rollouts, Google said earlier in the week that it has introduced a new search feature that lets users in India browse mobile device plans and recharge prepaid plans via Google Search. 

The Digital Evolution Of The Online Gaming Ecosystem

In 2018, the Supreme Court struck down legislation passed by Congress in 1992 that made it illegal for most states to legalize sports betting within their borders. The decision opened the floodgates to legalized sports betting — both online as well as in-person — in the United States.

Why eBay’s Trials And Tribulations May Have Melted ICE’s Bid — For Now

Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), which owns the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), had made an offer to buy eBay as has been broadly reported per reports earlier in the week. At a reputed $30 billion, the bid price was reportedly approximately 10 percent over eBay’s closing price coming into The Wall Street Journal report that shed some light on the offer.



The September 2020 Leveraging The Digital Banking Shift Study, PYMNTS examines consumers’ growing use of online and mobile tools to open and manage accounts as well as the factors that are paramount in building and maintaining trust in the current economic environment. The report is based on a survey of nearly 2,200 account-holding U.S. consumers.