6.7.17: Your morning briefing
Welcome to the PaymentsSource Morning Briefing, delivered daily. The information you need to start your day, including top headlines from PaymentsSource and around the Web:
Walmart's grocery machine: Walmart is stepping up its grocery game. In addition to a previously announced system that allows store employees to deliver groceries on their drive home, the retail giant is testing a system for using unmanned kiosks to deliver grocery orders, according to The Verge. Unlike Amazon or Shipt (see below), the system doesn't restrict the window of pickup. The kiosk is available 24 hours a day, and customers retrieve their order by punching in a five-digit PIN, according to the article. The kiosks are still in testing, and the service is free but requires a $30 minimum purchase, The Verge notes.
Amazon with benefits: Amazon is offering discounted Prime subscriptions to anyone with a valid Electronic Benefits Transfer card, lowering the barrier to buying groceries via AmazonFresh, which requires a Prime subscription, Engadget reports. Amazon has been aggressively expanding its presence in the brick-and-mortar space, with a focus on disrupting grocery purchasing and delivery. AmazonFresh Pickup allows customers to pick up groceries ordered online, and Amazon Go allows consumers to take items from a store without stopping at a checkout. The EBT discount lowers Amazon Prime's cost to $6 a month and includes all other Prime perks such as two-day shipping, video and music streaming; Amazon may expand the discount to other assistance programs at a later date, Engadget reports.
Shipt ahoy: The online grocery contender Shipt is expanding. The Birmingham, Ala.-based company raised an additional $40 million in funding from previous backers Greycroft Partners, e.ventures and Harbert Venture Partners, TechCrunch reports. Unlike the AmazonFresh Pickup model, which lets customers set a time of their choosing to get their groceries from an Amazon location, Shipt suggests delivery windows and works with local grocery chains, according to the article, which notes Shipt and AmazonFresh are about the same size. Shipt has an annual membership fee but does not charge a per-order fee.
Face off: Biometric facial recognition is being adopted in the payments industry for use cases such as Mastercard's "selfie pay" authentication system and other mobile commerce projects, and it can also be used effectively in law enforcement. South Wales Police used facial recognition for the first time to arrest a suspect, Ars Technica UK reports. The article has few details about the alleged crime, but notes there was an existing warrant for the suspect's arrest and the man's face was likely part of a database of 500,000 images.
From the Web
Danish fashion tycoon invests in Swedish payments firm Klarna
Reuters | Wed Jun 7, 2017 - Anders Holch Povlsen, owner of Danish fashion retailer Bestseller, is buying a stake in payments firm Klarna, one of Europe's most highly valued tech startups, the firm said on Wednesday.
Payments in UAE Banking System Normal, Central Bank Says After Qatar Rift
The New York Times | Wed Jun 7, 2017 - Payment and remittance transactions in the United Arab Emirates financial system are operating as normal, the central bank said on Wednesday after the UAE's diplomatic rift with Qatar caused uncertainty over some banking deals. The UAE financial system is positioned to support normal transactions and the central bank will continue to closely monitor the situation and any developments, taking any necessary steps to maintain stability, the central bank said in a statement carried by official state news agency WAM.
Millennials are driving the future fintech trends – and big banks will fail if they don't keep up
Wired | Tue Jun 6, 2017 - The pace-setters for the coming waves of fintech are the millennials. Now entering their 30s, they’ll be the dominant demographic in the workforce in just a few years. To meet their expectations, fintech companies will have to prioritize transparency, digital first, and personalized services, which were the common themes discussed during the fireside chats at WIRED Money 2017.
More from PaymentsSource
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Markets, not governments, should drive cash's replacement
Regulatory moves to reduce paper money often have confusing, and even dangerous results, writes Eric Grover, a principal at Intrepid Ventures.
Apple's latest move could deepen its rift with banks
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As 'gig' companies consolidate, Tipalti sees a way to untangle their tech
As the gig economy expands, at least some consolidation is inevitable. As a result, companies that already have complex webs of payments, billing cycles and workflows will need a way to merge their systems with those of their acquisition targets.
Canada's Interac gives Android Pay broad support
Android Pay achieved a broad and rather sudden rollout in Canada this week when the nation’s domestic debit network, Interac, announced its support for the mobile payment service days after Google officially launched Android Pay there.
ThreatMetrix, Gemalto partner on combined security offering
In a partnership designed to protect online customers from attacks, digital security providers ThreatMetrix and Gemalto will provide holistic authentication options to an array of financial services providers.