A report that Square Inc. is near a deal to put its credit-card reader in more New York City taxis isn’t true, according to a statement from New York City’s Taxi and Limousine Commission.
“There is no truth whatsoever to PrivCo’s reported statements regarding a deal in the works between Square and the TLC,” Allan Fromberg, a spokesman for the commission, said in an e-mailed statement.
Shares of VeriFone Systems Inc., a rival provider of card readers in city cabs, traded down less than 1% to $30.62 at 3:17 p.m. Oct. 9, recovering from an earlier decline of as much as 8.5% after the New York Post reported that a deal was near completion to outfit 1,000 city taxis with Square’s readers, citing researcher PrivCo. Most of the 13,000 city cabs have VeriFone’s readers, said John Williams, an analyst at UBS Securities LLC.
“Any larger-scale rollout would be a negative for VeriFone, but we think a 7-8 percent share loss is manageable given VeriFone’s $20 million quarterly taxi revenue run rate,” Williams said in a research report Oct. 9.
Victoria Brown, a spokeswoman for San Jose, Calif.-based VeriFone, didn’t respond to a request for comment. Aaron Zamost, a spokesman for San Francisco-based Square, said in an e-mailed statement that PrivCo’s statements on a Square deal “have no basis in fact.”
VeriFone and Creative Mobile Technologies LLC have city contracts to install readers in cabs, and they split share evenly, Fromberg said. Those contracts expire in February, and regulations will be issued by the end of the year with requirements companies must meet to be considered for the contract in the future, he said.
Square has a pilot program with the city to outfit 12 taxis with Apple Inc.’s iPads and technology that enables the devices to read cards, Fromberg said. There is no pending contract for this, he said. The taxi commission has issued a request for proposals for an application that would let riders pay using a smartphone, Fromberg said.