Western Union introduces 'Digital Location' for money transfers from home

Western Union has introduced 'Digital Location', a service which enables users to send and receive money from the comfort of their own home. The money transfer operator is running a pilot of the combined telephone and video service, which connects customers to an agent to assist with the transfer, in Austria, Belgium, Italy, Portugal and Oman. The move away from the traditional hands-on exchange at physical locations comes as more countries implement Covid-19 lockdowns. Western Union President and CEO Hikmet Ersek, says: “Due to limited services via retail locations in some areas impacted by restricted movement guidelines, we are seeing increased demand for our online services. We are happy to now offer another way for our customers to reach out to their loved ones with care and support. “It is more critical than ever to enable our customers to send money to family and loved ones or help importers and exporters to pay their suppliers. Money flows are a vital source of income for many of our customers, including our business clients and partners. Amid all the current uncertainty, we are doing everything we can to keep money moving to where it is needed most.”

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Payments

Plooto Launches Enhanced All-In-One Payment Automation Solution for Scaling Businesses

Plooto | January 16, 2024

Plooto, a leading payment automation solution for small-to-midsized businesses (SMBs), has launched a payment orchestration offering that is custom-designed to support the complex workflows and security requirements of rapidly scaling businesses. As the size and operational complexity of businesses increase, the risk of fraud and human error grows. This leads businesses to implement more rigorous security and control policies to keep the management of cash flow secure and reliable, placing additional burdens on finance teams including time, effort, and resources spent upgrading or building in-house solutions. Similar challenges extend to accounting and bookkeeping firms, as their robust compliance processes and corresponding reputation are critical drivers of growth. Firms' ability to retain and expand client accounts hinges not only on strong relationships but also on their adherence to rigorous compliance standards, especially when it comes to financial data protection. With this launch, Plooto brings to market the first solution in Canada to address these unique cash management challenges faced by midsize enterprises. This offering is priced at a competitive rate as organizations often cite cost as a barrier to adoption of cash management solutions. As volume and complexity of operations increase, businesses can trust Plooto to scale their needs seamlessly without straining their resources. Coupling end-to-end payment automation with stringent security controls and seamless connection to enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions, Plooto is now capable of helping even more businesses scale efficiently within their ecosystem. Building upon Plooto’s core offering of simplified, all-in-one payables and receivables automation, new capabilities include Dual Controls: Limits human error and protects against fraud through comprehensive approvals on changes to sensitive financial information Single Sign-On: Enterprise-level safeguards that enable security personnel to manage both user access to sensitive data and removal from a centralized hub as teams scale Integration with Oracle Netsuite: Seamless two-way sync automates reconciliation protecting against costly human error, reducing billable hours, and helping finance teams save time "Our new offering enables finance teams to easily scale their workflows and gain the visibility they crucially need into their cash flow,” says Hamed Abbasi, Co-Founder and CEO of Plooto. “I’m thrilled that Plooto is expanding how we support growing SMBs, and that we are the first company to fill this critical gap for Canadian businesses.” Having recently been awarded with Deloitte’s Technology Fast 500™ and Technology Fast 50™ designations for a staggering 3-year 433% growth rate, Plooto continues to provide industry-leading support for SMBs with a platform that enhances cash management through its all-in-one payment automation. Plooto has also recently expanded its leadership team, bringing extensive experience from major financial services companies such as Varo Bank, Xero, and PayPal. About Plooto Plooto partners with growing small-to-midsize businesses to give them complete control over their cash management. The all-in-one payment automation platform securely automates all payable and receivable workflows, offers extensive payment capabilities, and seamless integration with accounting software to automatically reconcile invoices. Founded in 2015 and headquartered in Toronto, Plooto serves over 10,000 North American businesses, and integrates with top accounting software platforms Quickbooks, Xero, and NetSuite. Simplifying complex processes at scale, Plooto is the financial engine businesses rely on to achieve their growth potential.

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Fintech

VoPay Unveils Instant Micro-Transaction Service for Bank Account Verification, Marking a First in Canada and the US

VoPay | January 11, 2024

VoPay, a leading provider of embedded financial technology solutions, has launched VoPay Verify, an Instant Bank Account Verification solution via microtransactions - pioneering the first-of-its-kind service in Canada and the United States. Recognizing the escalating adoption of bank account payments as a credit card and paper cheque alternative, the demand for a steadfast bank account verification method has become imperative for businesses. VoPay’s innovative solution empowers enterprises to rapidly authenticate and confirm any US or Canadian bank account, eliminating the protracted waiting times of up to 24 hours or more for micro-transactions to finalize. Micro-transactions, a stalwart tool for confirming bank account ownership over the years, entail crediting or debiting a nominal amount into the account. They offer several advantages for businesses, encompassing heightened security, improved user experience, regulatory compliance, and reduced chargebacks. However, the current process is notoriously slow and disruptive to users' experience, with transactions typically spanning at least a day to complete. By leveraging VoPay's real-time transaction capabilities, companies will reduce the risk of reversals, NSFs, and transaction failures, ultimately improving their bottom line. VoPay Verify offers a fully managed account verification experience by providing a pre-built user experience and intellectual logic that determines the transaction amount considering many different risk criteria. “This initiative gives our clients an out-of-the-box method for account verification. It means that they don't have to stitch together a solution and can utilize an optimized set of endpoints for micro-transaction verification,” says Hamed Arbabi, VoPay Founder & CEO. “Fast and easy account validation has become a crucial component in customer onboarding, and enterprises are struggling to find a fast, reliable, and cost-effective way to validate new accounts. VoPay's new Instant Micro-Transaction Verification tool does just that.” VoPay's latest offering further strengthens the company's position as the leading provider of Fintech-as-a-Service tools and a go-to provider for businesses looking to integrate embedded financial services into their offerings. VoPay Verify will be available to new and existing customers from February 1st. Sign up here for early access. About VoPay At the core of VoPay's offering is a multi-tenancy architecture, seamlessly integrated with a comprehensive payment engine and financial services solutions, epitomizing the concept of Fintech-as-a-Service. For software enterprises seeking to accelerate growth, expedite time to market, reduce operational costs, and enhance efficiency within their core platform, VoPay provides an embedded payment solution.

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Investments

Green Home Loans from PrimeLending Finance Energy Efficient Upgrades for Homeowners

PrimeLending | December 07, 2023

National residential mortgage lender PrimeLending, a PlainsCapital Company (PrimeLending), proudly offers Green Home Loans, a range of mortgage solutions for homeowners who want to finance environmentally beneficial upgrades to homes they are purchasing or already own. Energy efficient upgrades not only reduce a home’s carbon footprint, they also can increase property values and save money over time. Energy efficiency is a growing concern for American homeowners according to a 2023 study by Thumbtack1 that found 71% of homeowners said sustainability is absolutely a priority for this year’s home projects, yet nearly one-third (32%) still consider sustainable, energy efficient home upgrades too expensive. “Green Home Loans are a huge win for PrimeLending customers by helping to remove financial obstacles to making energy efficient upgrades,” said Tim Elkins, Chief Production Officer at PrimeLending. “We are committed to offering mortgage solutions that align with our customers' goals, such as saving money, increasing property value, and protecting the planet.” PrimeLending’s Green Home Loans are mortgage solutions that allow borrowers to finance certain green improvements, such as: Energy-efficient windows and doors Solar panels or solar-powered appliances Roof, floor, or wall insulation Energy-saving HVAC systems and appliances PrimeLending’s Green Home Loans include FHA, VA, USDA, conventional and renovation loan options and may offer favorable interest rates, repayment terms, and other benefits for the borrower. Consumers can connect with a PrimeLending home loan expert for more information. About PrimeLending PrimeLending is a national home lender combining personal guidance and local expertise with fast service, more choices and the flexibility to meet homeowners’ unique needs. PrimeLending is focused on empowering its customers to pursue their homeownership goals, whether they’re looking to buy, refinance, renovate or build a home. The PrimeLending team works alongside our customers in all 50 states, helping them make home financing decisions and have a rewarding experience along the way. PrimeLending is a wholly owned subsidiary of PlainsCapital Bank, which in turn is a wholly owned subsidiary of Hilltop Holdings Inc. (NYSE: HTH). More information at www.PrimeLending.com. Equal Housing Lender. All loans subject to credit approval. Rates and fees subject to change.

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Financial Management

Priority Announces Strategic Technology Partnership with Treasure Financial

Priority | December 11, 2023

Priority Technology Holdings, Inc. a leading provider of unified commerce solutions to businesses that accelerate cash flow and optimize working capital, has announced a strategic partnership with Treasure Financial Inc., a leading financial technology innovator in treasury management technology. Priority’s integration with Treasure Financial’s cutting-edge embedded yield API will enable Priority’s customers to allocate their excess working capital to an investment account across a diversified portfolio comprising premiere, secure vehicles such as Treasuries, Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities (TIPS), Government-backed money market funds, and professionally managed fixed-income instruments. This innovative partnership with Treasure provides Priority’s customers with a truly unified commerce platform that allows them to manage the point of sale or receivables payments in their Passport financial account in more ways. The integration offers Treasure’s higher-yielding investment capabilities and leverages the modern payables tools of Passport to optimize working capital on a single platform. “We are on a mission to change the way businesses, large and small, think about their payment solution providers by providing technology and services as revenue accelerators to grow their businesses and drive efficiency in their operations, and not as another cost center,” noted Thomas Priore, Chairman and CEO of Priority. At a time when operational efficiency and capital management optimization for businesses of all sizes remains paramount, the combination of Priority’s payments and banking capabilities and Treasure’s investment platform are disruptors to traditional business banking and cash management strategies. Each portfolio is actively managed by Treasure’s expert in-house investment team. Advanced algorithms help guide a thoughtful investment approach to cash management and yield generation. “The inclusion of Treasure’s capabilities into our unified commerce engine and treasury service offering brings us to the next level with cutting-edge cash management solutions,” states Al Acevedo, Senior Vice President of Treasury Services at Priority. “We are excited to launch this investment offering into our SMB, B2B and Enterprise channels so that our 800+ thousand customers may access a variety of investment and treasury management options from our trusted partner directly from their Passport account,” added Acevedo. “We are proud to partner with Priority to leverage the Treasure API and embed our corporate-grade cash management offering directly on the Priority Passport platform. This partnership is a testament to Treasure’s capabilities and will enable Priority’s customers to constantly maximize the yield on their idle cash without leaving the platform. This first-of-its-kind embedded finance partnership between Treasure and Priority is a huge step forward for the payments industry,” said Ben Verschuere, Co-Founder and Chief Investment Officer of Treasure Financial. ISOs, ISVs, finance professionals, and businesses interested in learning more about the Treasure and Priority partnership should contact their Priority representative or visit PriorityCommerce.com. About Priority Technology Holdings, Inc Priority is a solutions provider in Payments and Banking as a Service (BaaS) operating at scale with 820K active customers across its SMB, B2B and Enterprise channels. Priority processes $118B in annual transaction volume and provides administration for $850M in average daily deposits. Priority’s purpose-built technology enables clients to collect, store, borrow and send while providing customers acceptance of AP payment applications and Passport financial tools that best optimize their cash flow and maximize working capital.

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Tax groups have a meaningful opportunity to enhance the value of their organization’s digital transformation effort. This priority, which involves migrating tax automation to the cloud in tandem with larger enterprise resource planning (ERP) cloud migrations is becoming even more time sensitive. This white paper examines leading

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