Acculynk Inc. says it has hit "an absolute home run" in completing an acquisition that brings its online PIN-debit technology to small and midsize merchants.

Acculynk has generally served larger online retailers, including airlines, but now moves into the small-merchant market with its acquisition of PayLeap, an e-commerce payment gateway provider, the Atlanta-based technology provider announced Sept. 5.

The acquisition allows the companies to form Acculynk Direct, which will operate as a new division of Acculynk.

Acculynk Direct will target smaller online merchants with a complete service, including Acculynk's PaySecure online PIN pad, credit and debit card processing and fraud-prevention tools, says Ashish Bahl, CEO of Acculynk.

"We are now addressing all segments of the market," Bahl says. "We felt there was an entire small- to midsize-business market out there, with larger margins for the company, that we were not addressing."

Acculynk Direct is beneficial to "online merchants because it protects their business and customers in a far better way" than what those merchants are accustomed to, says Deborah Baxley, principal at Capgemini Financial Services.

Online merchants are often "left to their own devices" when it comes to security measures because if fraud occurs, they are liable, Baxley says.

Acculynk currently serves about 2,000 larger retailers, including American Airlines, which the company landed last month as its first major carrier to use PaySecure for its online customers. 

PaySecure, which utilizes a PIN-pad graphic for secure entry of a consumer's PIN online, currently operates on more than 3,200 merchant websites.

PaySecure's technology encrypts the data so the information is never transmitted as an actual, numerical PIN. Acculynk sends the PIN directly to the electronic funds transfer network, which in turn sends it to the bank for approval. Neither Acculynk nor the merchant stores the PIN data.

Warsaw, Ind.-based PayLeap currently serves 4,000 small to midsize online merchants.

"We get those small merchants immediately and our projection is to double that merchant base within a year," Bahl says.

Bahl did not share financial details of the PayLeap acquisition nor the fee structure for Acculynk Direct clients. The company will use its own sales force when working with smaller merchants, and will continue to use acquirers to focus on the larger retailers, Bahl says.

Acculynk spent three and a half months working to complete the PayLeap deal, he adds.

"We looked at the payments landscape and found PayLeap to be a strong technology-based company, but lacking a big sales force," Bahl says. "The talent of the individuals at PayLeap matched what was needed at Acculynk."

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