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A. Lyle Elias
ATMIA Founding Director
Growth of mobile payments poses challenges for payments industry according to IR; Interview with Steve Gilde, IR Global Payments Alliance Director
Mobile payments had a banner year, with Apple Pay seeing widespread adoption and companies like Samsung, Google and dozens of other companies expanding their solution in the market. As the number of these solutions increases in 2016, payments providers and financial institutions may have an even harder time achieving full visibility of the increasingly complex payment network. I recently interviewed Steve Gilde, IR Global Payments Alliance Director. Steve has been involved in all aspects of the retail payments business, including sales and marketing, customer service, delivery and support, as well as partner and distributor relations. Prior to joining IR, Steve held positions with IBM, ACI, Bank One, Harris Bank, Envoy Corporation and McDonnell Douglas Information Systems.
IR is the corporate brand name of Integrated Research Limited (ASX:IRI), a leading global provider of proactive performance management software for critical IT infrastructure, payments and communications ecosystems, with more than 1,000 organizations in over 60 countries—including some of the world’s largest banks, airlines and telecommunications companies rely on IR Prognosis to provide business critical insights and ensure continuity-critical systems deliver high availability and performance for millions of their customers across the globe.
I asked Steve to elaborate on how IR sees the growth of mobile payments as posing a challenge for the payments industry. Steve said, “Adding multiple mobile payments solutions is a challenge for a lot of organizations. There is a desire to provide customers with every possible payment option, but not all of the new payment types can be easily integrated into existing systems. This means that additional servers and software keeps getting bolted on around the big payment engines, continually raising the overall level of complexity. Both small and large companies feel the need to support these technologies to stay relevant, but it raises the level of complexity due to all the different software variations that need to be supported.” Steve went on the say, “The IR Prognosis monitoring and management solution helps keep payment processors up and running by providing real-time analysis on the performance of these different systems. Prognosis gives our clients customizable dashboards so that operational staff can see what’s going on across their payments processing environment at any point in time. Prognosis can also generate automated alerts and send these to IT staff for action, even if the resources are working in multiple geographic locations. In addition to providing detailed information on system level performance, Prognosis can interrogate the individual payment transactions and provide valuable insight that helps clients make better business decisions. ”
I asked Steve about his view of centralized versus decentralized payment systems and Steve said, “IR is driven by what our clients want, but the industry is evolving rapidly. Most payment transactions, even for mobile, still ride the credit and debit card rails that were laid down many years ago. This scenario works well for consumers, but favors banks and credit card companies financially. Retailers and other new non bank entrants in the payment space continue to look for ways to tip the scales back in their direction. Cryptocurrencies, like Bitcoin with its distributed ledger Blockchain offer interesting and exciting possibilites. At the same time, big payment system players like VISA and MasterCard have been very smart about investing in these new technologies to help ensure that they remain relevant in the future. ”Steve makes a strong case for the value multichannel multivendor monitoring and management solutions as the complexity of support multiple payment forms, be they centralized or decentralized payments systems, and with mobile payments transaction volume expected to grow to $721.4 billion by next year, this issue will only become more critical for organizations managing global payments systems