Category Archives: Payment Systems

Will Wences Casares’s Lemon.com Replace Your Wallet? – Forbes

The day when the contents of your wallet or purse reside in your Smartphone is coming soon and if successful serial entrepreneur Wences Casares has anything to do with it his Lemon.com will be the platform on which it’s built. Casares’s Lemon.com is a Palo Alto-based start-up operation built around an App that allows consumers to collect and store paper receipts so that they can watch how much money they spend and where and how they spend it.  Instead of having receipts pile up in your inbox, or letting them become a jumble in your wallet, you can send them to Lemon.com where they’ll be instantly filed and organized. Pretty much anything consumers place in their wallets or purses can now be easily digitized by taking a photo of it using their Smartphone. Images are encrypted, stored in the cloud and automatically organized in an easy to use and access service. No more rummaging around your wallet or purse to fish out your gift cards or last week’s dinner receipt. Not only will the service help you spend smarter, but could be a god-send for anyone who loses their physical wallet or purse as the App will aggregate all of your credit card and payment services in one place.

Launched in October 2011 with backing from Howard Schultz’s Maveron VC fund, Lightspeed and Social Capital, Lemon.com now has two million users and is positioned to build a new market opportunity around the organization and management of consumer spending information. Casares sees his Lemon on its way to ten million users and the platform as a stepping stone to a set of new services that can help brands connect with consumers.  Only 38 years old, Casares is a successful and experienced entrepreneur and knows how to grow and build businesses.

via Will Wences Casares’s Lemon.com Replace Your Wallet? – Forbes.

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Bonderman, Stephens Invest in EBay Merchant-Lender Kabbage – Bloomberg

Merchant-lending startup Kabbage Inc., which advances as much as $12,000 to EBay Inc. sellers to buy inventory, raised $6.7 million in venture funding from investors including TPG Capital’s David Bonderman and Warren Stephens of Stephens Inc.

The round of capital, led by BlueRun Ventures with money from United Parcel Service Inc., will be used to expand Atlanta- based Kabbage into marketplaces such as Amazon.com Inc. and Overstock.com Inc., develop software and hire more people, founder and Chief Executive Officer Rob Frohwein said.

Kabbage, which takes its name from a slang expression for money, targets sellers with annual sales of $15,000 to $3 million who are overlooked or rejected by traditional lenders because of their credit scores or lack of collateral.

Stephens, the CEO and owner of Little Rock, Arkansas-based Stephens Inc., said he invested because retailers and merchants need more access to capital.

Kabbage “doesn’t have to dominate a big segment of the market to make the company really successful,” Stephens said in a telephone interview. “It’s very targeted and there’s tons of people in it and if they get just a meaningful share of the market, the company will do very well.”

Stephens was connected to Kabbage through co-founder and Chairman Marc Gorlin, whom he’s known for several years. Stephens also was an investor in a previous company Gorlin co- founded called VerticalOne.

Bonderman, the billionaire who runs Fort Worth, Texas-based TPG Capital, has known Gorlin for years through family connections and past business deals, Gorlin said. Kabbage approached him about a possible investment and he agreed, Gorlin said.

via Bonderman, Stephens Invest in EBay Merchant-Lender Kabbage – Bloomberg.

Innovation Fast and Furious in Payments

Innovation has come fast and furious from other corners of the payments industry, with emergence of new networks such as Bling Nation, and the purchase of Revolution Money by American Express. Analysts say MasterCard’s lab is likely not a direct response to these developments, or a play aimed at Visa-Bezard says MasterCard does not suffer from an innovation gap against Visa-but rather a strategy to get out in front of innovation, rather than waiting for development elsewhere.

Bezard says he doesn’t think the big card firms like Visa and MasterCard are “losing sleep” over ventures like Bling and Revolution Money. But he also says there’s a realization at the larger card firms that “they will need to be in the driver’s seat, not in the back seat” when developing new technology.

The lab will also work closely with Josh Peirez’s innovative products team at MasterCard. In an earlier interview, Peirez told BTN that MasterCard is interested in developing new payments technology in an environment in which banks may lack the IT funds for large scale payments tech projects.

Red Gillen, a senior analyst in Celent’s banking group, says MasterCard’s challenge beyond developing and testing will be distribution and building a case for adoption among consumers.

“How do you get the product out? Direct to merchant? Or a bank? Or a mobile carrier?” he says. “Also, I think that a quick development cycle isn’t necessarily a good thing. It’s better to do one thing right that will last over a multi-year cycle.”

via MasterCard Enlists R&D Talent for the Battle – Bank Technology News Article.

via MasterCard Enlists R&D Talent for the Battle – Bank Technology News Article.