1.22.19 Your morning briefing

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The information you need to start your day, from PaymentsSource and around the Web:

Mastercard gets fined in Europe
The European Commission has fined Mastercard 570 million Euros, or about $648 million, over card network rules that prevented merchants from shopping for better terms at other banks in the EU.

The EU regulators that police competition said on Tuesday that Mastercard's rules before 2015 forced merchants to pay fees in their home country rather than looking for better rates in other countries. This artificially raised the cost of card payments, said Margrethe Vestager, EU Competition Commission, in a press release.

European regulators in 2015 set interchange fee caps that also standardized rates across the EU in an effort to increase transparency and "level" the competition.
Playing catch up
Apple Pay's global march has not always been smooth, with slow bank adoption in Canada and disputes over fee negotiations in Australia.

The app's had a similarly slow rollout in Spain, where it debuted three years ago with Banco Santander, and it took another year until CaixaBank joined. BBVA and Bankia did not add support until 2018.

One of the last major bank holdouts in Spain, ING Espana, is set to add Apple Pay, reports 9ot5mac, citing social media marketing from the bank. Apple Pay also recently shored up merchant holdouts in the U.S. and has diversified its products by adding brokerage funding.

Packing fintech for the trip
Grab's regional ride sharing rival Go-Jek has been gradually building payments into its app, and is adding wallet capabilities as the Indonesian company preps to enter the Philippines.

Go-Jek has taken a majority stake in Coins.ph, a former cryptocurrency company that has more recently moved into mobile payments, reports TechCrunch, adding the acquisition price is about $72 million.

Go-Jek already offers mobile payments in Indonesia, helping to drive usage of its ride-sharing app, a strategy it hopes to replicate in other markets.

Digital tourism
The Italian Federation of Public Establishments and Italian bank Intesa Sanpaolo have signed an agreement to improve payments, invoicing and lending for more than 100,000 companies in tourism, catering and entertainment.

As part of the deal, payment fees will be eliminated for all digital point of sale transactions below about $17 to encourage a move away from cash.

The collaboration additionally includes technology to analyze payments trends to inform marketing campaigns.

Streaming mad
Austrian privacy activist Max Schrems has accused content streaming companies of violating GDPR, the European data protection regulation.

The companies, YouTube, Netflix, Spotify, Apple and Amazon, either did not provide information to help consumers understand the usage of their data or did not provide enough, reports The Verge.

Schrems filed his complaint with the Austrian Data Protection Authority, which could fine the companies for any violations.

From the Web

Millions of Chinese tourists are spurring the growth of mobile pay overseas
CNBC | Sun January 20, 2019 - Three-fourths of supermarkets and convenience stores in Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand now accept Chinese mobile payment, according to a Nielsen survey released Monday in cooperation with Alipay. The adoption rate has increased rapidly in the last two years, and last year more Chinese tourists used mobile pay abroad than cash, the report said.

Zwipe tops up with $14M to bring biometric payment cards to market this year
TechCrunch | Mon January 21, 2019 - Biometric payment card startup Zwipe has swiped $14M to add to an earlier Series B round as it continues to work towards commercializing technology that embeds a fingerprint reader in payment plastic for an added layer of security.

Disneyland Paris Rolls Out Wireless Payment System
Forbes | Sun January 20, 2019 - Theme park operator Disneyland Paris has launched a wireless system which allows guests to open hotel doors and pay for everything from park tickets to restaurants. It is a whole new world for the French resort which has been using paper park tickets and meal vouchers since its ornate iron gates opened in 1992.

More from PaymentsSource

Amex pushes into China, but 'ever-changing' politics push back
Even though American Express received pre-approval to provide transaction settlement services in China more than a year ago, it is playing the waiting game to get those wheels in motion amid a fiery political climate.

Square's many flirtations with banking
The mobile point of sale pioneer Square has done much to expand its product range to stay competitive, and a few of those efforts have made the company more of a direct threat to banks.

Mastercard's subscription-billing misstep risks consumer backlash
Mastercard is cracking down on merchants who bill consumers for unwanted subscriptions when a free trial offer ends — but by limiting the rule to physical goods, it's leaving a lot of potential consumer goodwill on the table.

Billers need to handle lots more text(s), and much less paper
In sectors such as health care and B2B, digital communication is rapidly shoving paper processes to the side, according to David Yohe, vice president of marketing at BillingTree.

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