4.23.19 Your morning briefing
The information you need to start your day, from PaymentsSource and around the Web:
Ride share workaround
Sony's payment services division is working with licensed taxi companies to launch a ride sharing app in Tokyo. The service will support QR code and Uber-style stored-credential payments.
The partnerships are necessary because it's illegal to operate ride sharing services in Japan with private automobiles, reports TechCrunch, adding Sony's service, called s.Ride, covers about 10,000 taxis.
Rivals include Uber, which has made side deals of its own with taxi services; and JapanTaxi, a joint venture between taxi companies and Toyota.
Bitcoin on the card
Using credit cards to buy cryptocurrency has gotten gradually more difficult as the market has gotten more volatile, though London fintech Cashaa will support debit and credit card bitcoin, ethereum and CAS purchases.
Cashaa, which also just launched business banking, will support card-based cryptocurrency purchases in all markets except the U.S. Processing fees will be 4% for EU cards, and 5% for non-EU cards.
Several large banks, including Lloyds, Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase, halted support for credit card bitcoin purchases as the market for bitcoin collapsed in late 2018.
Consumers can use the Lightning network to make bitcoin payments at retailers including Amazon, which does not accept cryptocurrencies.
Crypto payments startup Moon is providing a browser extension that connects to cryptocurrency exchanges such as Coinbase and produces a QR code to execute the transaction, reports Coindesk, adding Amazon does not touch cryptocurrency during the transaction.
The Lightning feature, which uses third parties to convert bitcoin to traditional currency, should be workable on any e-commerce site by 2020.
eBay is discussing a possible investment in PaytmMall, which is expanding its online-to-offline business.
The investment would be up to $170 million, reports Economic Times in India, which adds eBay's online portal in India would remain separate from PaytmMall.
Paytm has been seeking a new strategic investor since December, according to the Economic Times, adding eBay sold its $1.1 billion stake in Flipkart after Walmart acquired Flipkart in 2018.
Alipay often signs agreements with merchants to serve travelers from China, a strategy that's extending to hockey via a deal with the Washington Capitals to support ticketing and concessions at Capital One Arena in Washington, D.C.
Alipay estimates more than 300,000 travelers from China visit the Washington area yearly, spending more than $600 million.
The company also hopes to raise its profile for the upcoming 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing, which will host the hockey event.
From the Web
Brazil's antitrust watchdog probing banks over competition hurdles to fintech
Reuters | Tue April 23, 2019 - Brazil’s antitrust watchdog Cade is investigating four banks in the country for allegedly creating competition hurdles to digital banking newcomer Nubank. Cade said Banco do Brasil SA, Caixa Economica Federal, Banco Santander Brasil SA and Banco Bradesco SA were denying requests to schedule automatic payments from Nubank clients that also were account holders at those banks.
New York takes down dark web ring linked to crypto-related laundering
CoinGeek | Mon April 22, 2019 - The Manhattan District Attorney has indicted three individuals who were found to have been selling counterfeit drugs on the dark web. The three sold and shipped the drugs to 43 states in the U.S., using Bitcoin Core (BTC) to launder over $2.3 million.
It’s not ‘unreasonable’ for businesses to create and use their own cryptocurrencies, expert says
CNBC | Tue April 23, 2019 - The possibility that multinational businesses may create and transact in their own cryptocurrencies is not “unreasonable” in the medium term, according to Blockchain Capital’s Gavin Brown. The notion that multinationals may issue their own currencies and request that their customers purchase with them is “not that outlandish.”
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