Who is Driving the “Speed up Payment” Initiative in the U.S.?

Sep 21, 2015

The U.S. Federal Reserve Bank has been working hard in the recent past to speed up payment processing. Earlier in August, a Fed task force on the matter elected a committee that will spearhead the multi-year process. The 19 member committee represents various parts of the diverse payment ecosystem, bringing together corporations such as Wal-Mart and payment innovators such as Ripple Labs and Dwolla. Here is a quick summary of all the 13 members;

  1. Wanda Chambers, Suncoast Credit Union – the Vice President of payments at the Suncoast Credit Union, Wanda has been involved in the Fed task force since 2013.
  2. Mitch Christensen, Wells Fargo – Mitch is the VP of payments at Wells Fargo, one of the earliest adopters of the enterprise approach.
  3. John Drechny, Wal-Mart – Drechny is responsible for acquiring relationships and building customer networks and also plays a big role in processing of electronic payments at Wal-Mart.
  4. Janet Estep, NACHA – Estep is the President and CEO at the Washington based trade group – NACHA.
  5. Peter Gordon, FIS – Gordon is Senior VP of payment network solutions at FIS – a payment technology company.
  6. Mark Keeling, The Bankers Bank – Keeling is currently Chief Operating Officer at Bankers Bank. He has vast experience having worked at several different organizations.
  7. Jordan Lampe, Dwolla – Communications Director at Dwolla, Lampe works mainly around mobile and online payments.
  8. Steve Ledford, The Clearing House – Ledford is the current CEO at The Clearing House. He has more than 30 years experience in the payment industry.
  9. Bob Steen, Bridge Community Bank – known as one of the very first proponents of speeding up bank transfers, Steen is the CEO of Bridge Community Bank.
  10. Christina Tetreault, Consumers Union – Christina Tetreault works at Consumers Union as a staff attorney of the Financial Services Program. She takes particular interest in emerging payment solutions such as high risk merchant accounts and BitCoin.
  11. Thomas Rea, U.S. Bank – Rea is executive VP and Manager of U.S. Bancorp’s transactions processing division. He has extensive experience in the payments industry.
  12. Susan Weinstock – Weinstock is the director of consumer banking at Pew Charitable Trusts. She has also previously held positions at the Consumer Federation of America and AARP.
  13. Ryan Zagone, Ripple Labs – Last but not least, Zagone is head of research at Ripple Labs and the key figure behind Ripple protocol. He brings extensive tech knowledge to the team.

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Having a merchant account allows an account holder to take advantage of merchant cash advances. When a merchant is approved for an advance, the business agrees to receive a lump sum of cash in exchange for an agreed-upon percentage of future credit card sales.

Pricing varies depending on the merchant’s industry, past credit card processing history, the type of business seeking the account, average ticket sales, and average transaction volumes.

Yes, EMB works with merchants who are building their credit, as well as those who have poor credit. EMB also approves merchants that have no credit card processing history and businesses that have lost their merchant accounts due to high chargebacks.

Several factors influence a merchant’s risk level. Though only one factor likely will not get a merchant classified as high risk, a combination of these may: business size, location, and industry, credit score, credit card processing history, a industry’s reputation for excessive chargebacks, a prior history of high chargeback ratios, and whether a merchant exclusively sells online.

Virtual terminals are stationed on a merchant’s website, making it easy for customers to make a payment or purchase online. Merchants or a payment processor can easily set up virtual terminals, so online businesses can accept credit and debit card and e-check transactions.

A merchant account is a business account with an acquiring bank. Without this business account, which actually works more like a line of credit, a merchant cannot accept and process credit and debit card transactions. Businesses need a merchant account to accept major credit cards via a static point-of-sale terminal, mobile card reader, or through a virtual payment gateway.

After filling out EMB’s simple online application and submitting any necessary, requested documents, many merchants get approved within 24 and 48 hours.

EMB specializes in working with high-risk merchants. EMB works with many merchants, including but not limited to businesses in these industries: gambling and gaming, adult entertainment, nutraceuticals, vaping and e-cigarettes, electronics, tech support, travel, high-end furniture, weight loss programs, calling cards, e-books and software, and telecommunications.

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