4.29.19 Your morning briefing

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Mobile globe
Visa has relied on partnerships with firms like OXXO and Banamex to extend financial services to emerging markets, a strategy that has extended to Pakistan and Africa.

In Pakistan, Visa has launched a QR-code mobile payment system in partnership with HBL, one of Pakistan's largest banks, reports The News, a site in Pakistan. The service follows a national initiative in Pakistan to boost financial inclusion through mobile payments.

In Africa, Visa is partnering with fintech PalmPay to support a mobile wallet in Ghana, Tanzania and Nigeria, reports Telecompaper. Users attach their Visa card details to their PalmPay profile, or use a virtual card.

India is moving closer to an outright ban on all cryptocurrencies, joining China in taking a hard line.

A draft of a bill has been sent to the pertinent government agencies, reports the Economic Times in India, following the formation of a panel to develop regulations for cryptocurrency in 2018. The Indian government considers cryptocurrency risky and untraceable, taking much the same stance that it did when removing large sums of cash from circulation in 2016.

The bill also follows an Indian court decision that made it harder for cryptocurrency companies to operate in India. The country has taken a more favorable view toward blockchain, which has helped boost cross-border payments to and from India.

Sinemia shut down
A little over a month after altering its model to remove a subscription requirement, movie payment company Sinemia is halting operations.

The company positioned itself as a rival to MoviePass, which also made adjustments to its business model amid a challenging market for movie payment apps.

Sinemia faced legal battles, including a patent fight with MoviePass and a class action suit from consumers over fees. The company said these contributed to its shutdown, reports Gizmodo.

AML team
Swedbank has formed a team to respond to a series of money laundering investigations in the U.S., Sweden and the Baltics.

Anders Ekedahl, the bank's head of group IT, will lead the unit, which will focus on AML, counterterrorism, fraud, payments crime and other risks, reports Finextra.

The bank has admitted some anti-money laundering failures, and is being investigated in connection with billions of dollars in suspect transactions, mostly involving parties in Russia, according to Finextra and wire reports.

From the Web

How The Restaurant Industry Is Moving Toward Cashless Payments For Employees
Forbes | Sat April 27, 2019 - Today, most restaurant transactions either involve a credit card or debit card. Although consumers are used to instant and cashless payments, the majority or restaurant employees still get paid with a check. However, the industry is slowly moving toward cashless payments for employees.

EU accepts Visa, Mastercard offer to cut non-EU card fees to end antitrust probe
Reuters | Mon April 29, 2019 - The European Union said that it has accepted an offer by Visa and Mastercard to cut fees on payments made by tourists using cards issued outside the bloc to stave off fines and end an EU antitrust investigation. The commitments will cut such multilateral interchange fees by 40 percent on average.

Samsung Joins Corporate Giants Reportedly Eyeing Bespoke Crypto
Yahoo Finance | Sun April 28, 2019 - Samsung is another big-name company to consider issuing its own cryptocurrency. Similar stories have already emanated from the likes of Facebook and JPMorgan Chase, with analysts speculating on various use cases for these cryptocurrency tokens.

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