Morning Brief 10.9.20: Ripple gets into the merchant credit game

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

Building block

Ripple is attempting to address the small-business liquidity crunch by allowing its affiliated digital asset XRP and On-Demand Liquidy service to support short-term credit.

Through a product called Line of Credit, businesses can purchase XRP from Ripple, and are charged a fee based on the amount borrowed. Ripple is piloting Line of Credit with RippleNet clients, who focus on cross-border money transfers. The company contends the service allows businesses to more quickly invest funds from pre-funded accounts.

Small businesses have been particularly hard hit during the financial crisis that accompanied the coronavirus. Digitally-focused payment companies such as PayPal, Kabbageand Square have pushed credit products as a way to speed more funds to merchants facing cash flow issues.

Checking out

Checkout-free technology firm Standard Cognition has signed Chartwells, a unit of Compass Group, which operates thousands of stores on college and corporate campuses.

The initial deployment will be at Chartwells on the University of Houston campus, which will be retrofitted to support touchless shopping and payments. Other stores will open shortly in North Carolina and Ontario.

Standard is among the firms offering checkout-free technology to retailers wishing to add the technology to counter Amazon Go and to reduce the amount of contact between consumer, checkout stations and staff.

Startup fund

Paytm plans a developer fund of about $2 million for equity investments in startups that want to list their apps on Paytm's new app store.

The Indian payment giant is trying to lure developers to the app store, which it set up partly due to the feud between Paytm and Google, reports Economic Times in India.

Google is requiring app store developers who take payments to use Google's billing system, which charges a 30% fee. During the squabble, Google briefly shut off Paytm, contending the company had violated Google's policy against processing gambling payments.

Carbon footprint

Amazon's environmental strategy has prompted the company to add electric vans, which are slated to deploy in 2022.

The vans were built through a partnership between the e-commerce firm and Rivian Automotive, which is scheduled to deliver 10,000 vans to support delivery initially, reports CNBC. Amazon hopes to have 100,000 electric vehicles deployed by 2030.

Amazon has set a goal to use all renewable energy by 2030 and be carbon neutral by 2040. In August Amazon signed a separate deal with Daimler's Mercedes-Benz, which will sell 1,800 electric vans to Amazon.

From the web

Affirm files confidentially to go public
TECHCRUNCH | Thursday, October 8, 2020
This afternoon Affirm, a startup focused on providing point-of-sale credit to consumers making online purchases, announced that it has filed to go public.

Amazon India's payments unit gets $95.5 mln from parent ahead of festive season
REUTERS | Thursday, October 8, 2020 Inc has invested 7 billion rupees ($95.51 million) in its Indian payments unit, ahead of the festive season, data from business intelligence firm Tofler showed.

Apple made ProtonMail add in-app purchases, even though it had been free for years
THE VERGE | Thursday, October 8, 2020
On Tuesday, Congress revealed whether it thinks Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google are sitting on monopolies. In some cases, the answer was yes. But also, one app developer revealed to Congress that it — just like WordPress — had been forced to monetize a largely free app.

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