4.5.19 Your morning briefing
The information you need to start your day, from PaymentsSource and around the Web:
Western Union is collaborating with the Manila-based fintech Coins to expand operations in the Philippines, one of the world's busiest remittance markets.
The ride hailing app Go-Jek recently acquired Coins, an e-wallet provider, giving the collaboration plenty of room to add transfers to mobile car sharing and digital payments.
Western Union has been aggressively adding digital services to compete with fintechs and blockchain initiatives that are targeting its traditional transfer business. It has added a digital service with Dollar General and has been piling on mobile technology to augment its traditional brick and mortar network.
The Apple train
Apple Pay's foray into mass transit is accelerating, with deployments underway in the U.S. and a full debut in Singapore's mass transit system.
In Singapore, Apple Pay will work on any mode that accepts Mastercard, with Visa support expected later this year, reports Apple Insider.
Singapore is a tech-friendly city with numerous digital projects, such as Alipay's effort to support a full trip to Singapore via digital payments.
The Securities and Exchange Commission has issued guidance on determining if startups should be regulated as securities, a potential step toward regulating Initial Coin Offerings and other blockchain initiatives.
The securities guidance "may" apply to entities that are involved in selling, offering, marketing, promoting, buying, trading, holding, storing and offering financial services. The SEC stressed it's not a rule, but guidance, so there's still some room for interpretation.
The battle over whether cryptocurrency startups should be regulated as securities has been fierce, with companies such as Ripple contending their cryptocurrencies are separate from the company, and thus should not be regulated as securities. The SEC has nudged toward such regulation, though it has not taken a final stance.
Smart contract bridge
API platform Sila has launched a beta program that provides a link between the smart contracts that support the Ethereum blockchain and payment systems such as ACH.
The company hopes the bridge will provide greater access to digital payment rails for developers and startups, thus reducing time to market.
Sila's CEO, Shamir Karkal, was a co-founder of Simple, a financial services marketing company that was later acquired by BBVA. Karkal also was head of open APIs at BBVA.
From the Web
Now There’s a Canadian Dollar-Pegged Stablecoin on the Way
CoinDesk | Fri April 5, 2019 - Cryptocurrency exchange Coinsquare is launching a stablecoin pegged 1:1 to the Canadian dollar (CAD). The exchange plans potential roles for its new “eCAD” token in cross-border payments and remittance, peer-to-peer lending, merchant payment solutions, as well as trade settlements and forex conversions.
Digital Payments: Exclusive Or Inclusive?
Forbes | Thu April 4, 2019 - The recent $35 billion sale of Worldpay, a leading digital payments processor, is the sector’s largest ever. The purchase, made by fintech group Fidelity National Information Services (FIS), shows just how rapidly the digital payments landscape continues to change.
Financial Institutions Sued in U.S. Over Downed Malaysia Airlines Flight
The Wall Street Journal | Thu April 4, 2019 - The family of an American killed in the crash of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 filed an antiterrorism lawsuit Thursday alleging that two prominent U.S. money transfer companies and two Russian banks were responsible for providing financial support to the pro-Russian separatists involved in the destruction of the plane.
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