02.23.18 Your morning briefing

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

In transit: Transportation has become an important gateway for payments innovation, leading Visa to open a dedicated innovation hub in London. Called the Transportation Center of Excellence, it will combine the Visa Developer Platform, Visa Token Service, Visa Ready for Transit and Visa Global Transit Solutions. Developers from global companies will have access to APIs and other open development tools to work on automation for air, rail and automotive payments and ticketing technology.
Not afraid: The fear of contactless payments fraud in Europe is abating, feeding an interest in "wearable" payments via watches, bracelets, rings and other accessories, reports Mastercard. The card brand said contactless spending on Mastercard and Maestro products expanded 145% in the past year, totalling 38% of all in-store transactions. That's leading Europeans to seek other ways to pay, as 25% of Europeans expect to try wearable payments. Fraud concerns have dropped 41% in the Netherlands, 33% in Spain, 31% in the U.K. and 24% across all of Europe.

Phone bitcoin: Shakepay has launched a cryptocurrency wallet that enables Canadians to buy and sell bitcoin and other currencies directly through a mobile phone with a single click. The Shakepay wallet also supports Canadian-dollar P-to-P transfers through the Interac network and cashing out cryptocurrencies to Canadian dollars. The Montreal-based Shakepay's founders, Jean Amiouny, a lecturer at McGill University; and Roy Breindi, who worked as a technology associate at Morgan Stanley, envision the wallet as part of an improved bridge between alternative currencies and government-backed money.

Taxing in Canada: Companies such as Paytm are already trying to automate Canadian taxes, a market that's getting more crowded as Canadian digital prepaid company Payment Source [no relation to this publication] has expanded its relationship with the Canada Revenue Agency. The collaboration allows Canadians to pay taxes at post offices, using a QR code embedded in CRA forms. These codes can make payments in person or via debit at more than 6,000 locations.

From the Web

Teampay raises $4m so you don’t have to steal your CEO’s credit card anymore
TechCrunch | Thu Feb 22, 2018 - Few problems are as much of a headache for the modern corporate worker as buying things on the company’s dime. Companies are loathe to hand out credit cards to everyone in the building, but they also want their employees to do your job without having to fill out six forms in triplicate to requisition a pencil. Andrew Hoag, the founder and CEO of New York City-based Teampay, says that companies do crazy things to handle these problems. “We run across customers that cancel a corporate card every three months to reset it,” he explained. That’s where Teampay comes in. The product allows companies to provide virtual credit cards to every employee, and then follows that up with a suite of approval workflow and analytics features that will make every CFO swoon and employees rejoice at the ease of buying services. The company announced today that it has raised $4 million in venture capital led by Rick Smith at Crosscut Ventures.

Five reasons 2018 could be the best year yet for cryptocurrencies
CNBC | Fri Feb 23, 2018 - Hosp has explained before why a potential cryptocurrency bubble could burst in 2018, but there are several factors that make him see upside potential in the space. For bitcoin, the most important cryptocurrency by his estimation, he sees a 150 percent potential upside for 2018. Taking into account several factors, the cryptocurrency market's upside potential could rise to up to seven or eight times present levels, he says.

The Safety of U.S. Data Could Rest in Georgia
U.S. News & World Report | Fri Feb 23, 2018 - At one point or another, much of the U.S.’s data passes through Georgia. The state is a financial technology capital, with 70 percent of all payment transactions handled in Atlanta. And Georgia is a major internet access point for not only the Southeast but also the Caribbean and part of South America, says Stanton Gatewood, the state’s chief information security officer. “We have a tremendous amount of information flowing through the state of Georgia,” he says.

More from PaymentsSource

Amazon's a competitor, but also a teacher
There are practical lessons from Amazon's service model that can be applied elsewhere, writes Derek Corcoran, chief experience officer at Avoka.

Alipay keeps spreading in U.S. as it targets China's travelers
Ant Financial, which operates China's popular Alipay wallet, has a plan for the U.S. that goes beyond its abandoned purchase of MoneyGram.

Wirecard, SES deploy in-store mobile checkout for Alipay, WeChat
Wirecard has partnered with SES-imagotag, which makes electronic shelf-labeling systems, for a new technology enabling consumers to buy products directly from store shelves with their smartphones.

Transpay expands B-to-B services to fuel tourism, cross-border payments
Eyeing sectors with increased independent work forces and growing tourism, cross-border payments provider Transpay says it is making its business-to-business mass payout platform available in Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.

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