Part 3 – Internet 2.5 – The Next “Wave” is Here

Happy After Thanksgiving! Hope everyone was able to enjoy a wonderful time with family and friends. Today is the 3rd installment of the series, a long blog. 
The next big network wave is here. Call it web 2.5 or 3.0, but the integration of payments into “everything” is a major event. Payments are the “trust layer” that TRANSFORM anonymous nodes providing uncertain service into known, defined and guaranteed service providers. Effective communities require value exchange and “trust”. The payment trust function enables networks to evolve from “cost free” discovery and information sharing, into transactional resource/service exchange: from read-write to read-write-execute. Sure we could call the wave “trust” but the only ubiquitous “trust network” is payments so I prefer to keep payment wave as the naming convention.

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Part 2 – The Power of Bank Networks

The Bull Case for V/MA (24 pages). 

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Part 1 – US Payments Environment covered the complexity of the US payment environment and the challenges faced by top banks in modernizing their systems (where all systems live forever). There are many types of payments: bill payments, A2A, P2P, wires.. Today the focus is on how banks intermediate commerce. Banks MUST have networks as every bank can’t connect to every consumer/merchant. Effective Bank networks (aka rails) are NOT a commodity service, but one that allows the banks to leverage their unique ability to assume risk.

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US Payments Environment – Something Big – 5 Part Series

Part 1 – Assessing the Environment and Setting the Focus  (part 2  – Power of Bank Networks)

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Must read FT article “How JPMC’s plan to kill credit cards split the bank”. The article discusses Jamie Dimon’s internal mandate to drive a new payment network. I was shocked with the level of internal org quotes here.  In my view, Jamie is the best bank CEOs in history (based on performance and talent coming out of JPMC). As a former banker, I know how hard it is to move the ship.  However, FT is wrong. Chase’s efforts ARE NOT about killing credit cards, but rather creating something much bigger.

This is a long blog..

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Apple – #1 Payment Innovator

As Apple is set to launch the iPhone 14 today, I was thinking about the significance of ApplePay’s innovations to V/MA and how these innovations benefit the entire network of merchants and consumers. Making payments easy is hard… Apple is the lead “innovator” within the V/MA networks at the consumer touchpoint (with Google, Samsung, PayPal and others in the mix). Their “wallet” and branded integration into both POS AND mCom is unrivaled and represents 93% of all mobile wallet payments in the US (2021).

This 2021 Pulse Network Debit Whitepaper provides the best public view on performance (US Only), with TPV CAGR over 50%. Quite frankly, when it comes to mobile payments, it’s silly to talk about anything else by ApplePay in the US

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Pay By Bank – Where does it work and why?

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Friday I was a tad “let down” in the Sionic/TCH/MX release of Pay-by-Bank. Per my blog on Google/TCH launch and Google P2P I was anticipating something much bigger. To be clear I firmly believe that TCH is working on an “ApplePay Competitor”, which will entail TCH tokens inside of Google’s phone, but this will be 3-6 months out.  Per the blogs above, I see neither pay-by-bank nor TCH Tokens in Google Pay as a threat to V/MA. 

Today I thought I would drill down into “pay by bank”, the dynamics of why it works in some markets, and why I see little threat to V/MA in replacing core cards in eCom or at POS.

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New MA Rate Tier for Installments (ApplePay Later)?

Quick 18 Aug update to Aug 1 blog below. This new rate tier was confirmed by Bloomberg this week. According to Bloomberg, Settlment product acceptance is optional for merchants (does not operate in Accept All Cards rule). Optional acceptance is quite surprising. I surveyed 3 top 10 merchants (non-grocers) and couldn’t find one that plans to sign up for the product (other than Apple).

Note that card based BNPL (consumer BNPL) has no proven market data showing increased conversions. My inclination is to believe Card based BNPL conversion will closely mirror a normal credit card. See the rationale in my blog Three Flavors of BNPL.


As I outlined in June, Apple Pay Later will be (est Oct)  is the first major launch customer of Mastercard Installments. A large retailer just related that Mastercard plans for a new rate tier to support this product. 

“Somewhere around 300 bps” – Top 5 US Merchant

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