The Briefing on Payments

The latest news, trends and data in Payments

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The Key Moments in
Payments This Month

 CommBank enters BNPL market with new pay in four feature

Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) has entered the buy now, pay later (BNPL) market, directly competing with the likes of Afterpay and Klarna.

Today, the bank unveiled its new BNPL feature, which can be used anywhere debit and credit card payments are accepted.

Set to launch in mid-2021, the feature will be available to eligible CBA customers, linking to customer bank accounts, with no ongoing fees and at no additional cost to businesses.

Source: Verdict

 Tide to launch new Payment Acceptance service

UK business financial platform Tide has announced it will expand its platform further, introducing Tide Payment Acceptance later in 2021.

The product will initially be available in the UK and later rolled out to Tide’s new Indian arm.

Tide Payment Acceptance enables Tide members to accept payments from customers online, on the go or at their business premises, via card terminals.

 Starling launches debit cards made from recycled plastic

UK challenger Starling Bank has launched debit cards cards made from recycled plastic in a bid to become more eco-friendly.

The new card is the first UK Mastercard debit card to be made from recycled plastic. In addition, the material, which is sourced from EU industrial waste from printing and packaging industries, makes up 75% of the card.

Starling argues that the new cards will reduce the demand for new plastic production.

Source: Verdict

 US small business revenue migrates online, Amex survey

An American Express survey has revealed that 57% of small business owners have said their businesses are fully open as shutdowns ease, with reopen rates aided by companies shifting operations online.

One-third of businesses stated they now either exclusively sell online or expanded to a hybrid business, conducting sales both online and in-person.

The shift to online has reset revenue expectations across small businesses.

Source: Verdict

 Poland’s Nest Bank chooses Fiserv to manage card programmes

Poland’s Nest Bank has chosen Fiserv to power its debit and credit card programmes as part of the bank’s ongoing digital development.

Through the partnership, Fiserv will provide traditional and online card issuing, as well as fraud monitoring. This will enable Nest Bank to issue virtual payment cards quickly.

Nest Bank specialises in financial services for micro- and small enterprises. Currently, it offers a range of products for retail clients, including deposit accounts and investment products.

Source: Verdict

 Goldman Sachs in talks to buy credit card business of JetBlue

American investment giant Goldman Sachs is reportedly in discussions with JetBlue Airways to purchase its credit card business.

Citing people familiar with the development, the Wall Street Journal reported that Goldman is competing with Barclays, which currently issues JetBlue credit cards.

The sources said that the discussions are currently underway and JetBlue, whose contract with Barclays doesn’t end for almost another three years, may decide to stick with the British lender.

Source: Verdict

Automation in Action

The latest companies to use AI to streamline their workforce

Pandora Automates 5% of Workforce

Music streaming service and Spotify rival Pandora has announced that it is laying off about 5% of its workforce in a bid to save around $45m a year. Jobs across several departments are being automated, including advertising, marketing and investment, as part of a wider restructuring to the company in a bid to maintain its presence in the streaming market.

Source: TechCrunch

Amazon Restructuring Sees Key Tasks Automated

Online retail giant Amazon has cut hundreds of jobs at its Seattle headquarters as the company reorganises to remove older departments and shift a growing number of tasks onto AI-based software. The company, which is enjoying strong growth, is reportedly restructuring to support future ventures, cutting some operating costs in the process.

Source: Time

Driverless Trucks Replace Oil Sands Jobs

Canada-based Suncor Energy has announced the layoff of several hundred workers as the company introduces autonomous haul trucks into its Alberta-based oil sands operations. The layoffs, which have prompted strong reactions from unions, are likely to be only the start, with Suncor planning to build a fleet of over 150 driverless trucks over the next six years. 

Source: Global News

India Sees IT Layoffs in Tens of Thousands

Once one of the biggest employment sources in the country, India’s IT industry saw layoffs totalling over 56,000 in 2017, and is expecting to see further job cuts in the coming year. The layoffs have been largely due to digitisation and automation, which have dramatically reduced the number of workers required to maintain current operational levels.

Source: Quartz