Morning Brief 6.15.20: Amex plans to clear payments in China by year-end
The information you need to start your day, from PaymentsSource and around the web:
License to clear
American Express says the People's Bank of China has given it a network clearing license for RMB transactions, one of the largest steps yet for one of the westnern companies wishing to process domestic payments in China.
Amex's joint venture, Express Hangzhou Technology Service Limited, expects to begin clearing transactions later this year, Amex said in a release. Chinese regulators gave earlier clearances to Amex that were less tangible, mostly acknowledging receipt of the payment company's application.
Visa, Mastercard, PayPal and other non-Chinese companies have for years attempted to build domestic payment processing in China, but have repeatedly run into roadblocks. China has long promised to open its financial system to outside companies, often under international pressure, but often shifts requirements quickly, making it hard for these companies to gain final approval.
Google is reportedly trying to broaden its ties to merchants by allowing stores to set up branded buttons inside the Google Pay app.
The buttons would reduce navigation between shopping and payments, reports The Information, adding Google has started approaching merchants to accept the features, pitching it as "one stop" navigation.
The move would partly be a pandemic response, as Google hopes to appeal to merchants adjusting to a spike in online shopping as stores are either closed or partially open.
Google is also working on account based products with Citigroup and Stanford Federal Credit Union, Like Samsung's debit card, this is designed to reach a broader audience without managing credit scores. Google did not provide a comment.
As political discussions focus on how a U.S. digital dollar will be distributed and the role of the Federal Reserve and the banking system, the U.S. government has started work on the underlying technology.
The National Science Foundation has awarded a $225,000 grant to blockchain company KRNC to design cryptocurrency elements for U.S. currency, reports Coindesk.
KRNC supports a protocol that could allocate cryptocurrencies to traditional money, which could then be distributed to users. This would allow people to interact with decentralized applications without having to purchase cryptocurrencies, thus supporting government-issued money.
Mastercard has extended a deal with EedenBull and will support the Edinburgh/Oslo-based payment company's digital transformation of its corporate spending platform.
EedenBull's QBusiness tracks and processes purchases staff make on behalf of their employer through a mix of cards, an app and integration with corporate accounting systems.
Mastercard will work with EedenBull to boost scale, digital capacity and attempt to add more markets. EedenBull works with 65 Norwegian banks that offer EedenBull to a few thousand small businesses.
Ban on bitcoin
India's government has long been opposed to cryptocurrency, but wants to tighten restrictions through a potential law that would be an outright ban.
Knoxville is the latest in a series of cities to suffer a ransomware attack severe enough to knock out parts of the municipal IT system.
The attack came fast enough to encrypt multiple systems, causing the public website and court network to shut down, reports ZDNet. Emergency services such as police, fire and 911 operate on a separate server and were not impacted.
From the Web
Fintech Startup Synapse Lays Off Nearly 50% Of Full-Time Staff
FORBES | Mon June 15, 2020
Fintech startup Synapse, which makes digital banking software for other fintechs, is laying off 63 people, or nearly 50% of its full-time staff because of the effects on business of the COVID-19 outbreak.
India’s Rumored Crypto Ban May Be Overblown, Say Industry Pros
YAHOO FINANCE | Mon June 15, 2020
Announced Monday, Ziglu allows users to exchange GBP for bitcoin, ether, litecoin, and bitcoin cash, with more fiat currencies to be added and a debit card coming in July or August.
JotForm partners PayPal to expand payment options
VERDICT | Mon June 15, 2020
The partnership will integrate the JotForm platform with PayPal to expedite payments for users purchasing through a payment form.
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