For Jennifer Miles, 2013 was quite a year to become president of VeriFone Americas, as the terminal maker embarked on aggressive pursuit of new payments technology to improve its performance.
"During the past year, we have been focused on managing the transition to mobile retail and payment services technologies, while at the same time reinforcing commitments to existing clients to ensure we are fulfilling their current requirements," says Miles, who was previously the company's executive vice president of North America.
VeriFone announced Miles' promotion a week after longtime CEO Doug Bergeron resigned. Miles' role was one of many changes VeriFone made to shake up its leadership. In September, VeriFone hired Paul Galant, a former Citigroup payments executive, as its permanent CEO.
During the company's transformation, VeriFone remained active in product development and deployment. It launched new payments technology for taxi cab payments and is offering bundled payments services based on the previous year's acquisition of Point, a Swedish company.
"Retailers are eager to find more meaningful and profitable ways to enable commerce and engage customers in-store and online. Weve been delivering new products and services to fulfill those needs and provide consumers with entertaining and interactive experiences where they shop," Miles says. "VeriFone has a unique position at the point of consumer and merchant interaction and we are working with retailers and channel partners to enable contextual marketing, digital advertising, couponing, loyalty and social media at the point of payment."
Miles joined VeriFone in 2001, and has spent the past 13 years working on the company's strategy to move away from paper checks to electronic transactions.
"During that time I had the benefit of managing key aspects of the company, working with clients and partners to understand what the market needs today and where it can go tomorrow," says Miles.
The role women play in the payments industry has also expanded and diversified.
"There has always been opportunity for women in payments, but in recent years we've certainly seen a lot more progress in terms of women assuming executive responsibilities," she says. "I see this every day in my dealings with company partners and clients, as well as competitors, and I expect this to continue."
See the full list of honorees for this year's Most Influential Women in Payments.