Today In Payments: Affirm Raises $500M; US Offices At 50 Pct Capacity In August

Today in Payments

In today’s top news, Affirm raised $500 million, and U.S. offices were reportedly at only half capacity in August. Plus, the European Union could pass new laws that would force Apple to share its payments tech.

Affirm Raises $500M, Adds Bi-Weekly Plan

Affirm, a San Francisco-based point-of-sale (POS) buy now, pay later (BNPL) lender, announced a $500 million series G round of funding Thursday (Sept. 17), bringing its total funding raised to more than $1.3 billion.

US Offices Only At 50 Pct Capacity In August

Most office buildings are still dark in the U.S., six months and counting since the pandemic started. Brivo, which provides access control systems for workplaces, reported data that showed that the “unlocks” at offices — meaning when someone enters a workplace via their credentials — were down 51 percent in August as compared to February.

EU Could Force Apple To Share Payments Tech With Competitors

The European Union (EU) could pass new laws that would make it mandatory for Apple to share the payments technology in its iPhones. The new laws would prevent developers from restricting access to their near-field communication (NFC) technology embedded in the phones or other devices, like smartwatches.

Walmart, Oracle Stake Could Push TikTok Into Majority US Ownership

Backers of a new group vying to buy the U.S. operations for TikTok want to craft an agreement giving U.S. interests a majority stake in an attempt to appease the Trump administration’s fears of foreign surveillance. Under that plan, which would see Oracle and Walmart with a large stake of the video-sharing app, TikTok would file for an IPO in the U.S. in around a year.

Report: Helping QSRs Fight Food Fraud

Many quick-service restaurants (QSRs) are turning to promotions to boost mobile ordering, but must also prevent dishonest consumers from redeeming single-use offers more than one time. In this month’s Mobile Order-Ahead Tracker, Mandy Shaw, CEO of fast casual chain Blaze Pizza, explains how combining scenario planning with fraud risk engines can help QSRs tailor offers for legitimate customers while keeping those who’ve already used the promos from going back for seconds.

Visa: Real-Time Settlement, Online Marketplaces Help Put SMBs Back On The Road To Recovery

Main Street businesses may be surviving with the help of digital storefronts, but real-time settlements can help them thrive. Mike West, head of global commercialization for Visa Direct, tells Karen Webster that getting funds settled more quickly can give merchants the cash cushions they need to expand, weather economic shocks and even get their suppliers paid quickly. He says that will have positive ripple effects for the U.S. economy.

Why Small Coffee Shops Are Thinking Big About Digital

Small independent coffee shops have suddenly found themselves needing to go digital, but don’t have huge IT departments to help out, according to Tim Griffin, founder of small-business payments platform Cloosiv and chief product officer of its new parent company Odeko. Here’s how Griffin’s platform aims to cater to your local coffee spot.