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Companies new to payments, such as Groupon, want to control every aspect of commerce, including card transactions, noted panelist Greg Cohen, VeriFone Commerce Solutions senior vice president and general manager. In response, ISOs should defend their relationships with merchants by making themselves more valuable, he asserted.

Dongles that fit into smartphones represent the tip of the iceberg of change, according to panelist Todd Ablowitz, president of Double Diamond Group. ISOs should defend their position with merchants by offering something special, he urged.

To find that something special, ISOs might consider cloud technology, Ablowitz suggested. The cloud is enabling ISOs to offer merchants technological innovations, such as email and text alerts, for as little as $50 a month, he noted.

Silicon Valley tech companies that are experimenting with payments, not as a profit center but merely as a way to collect data, are filled with Millennials, young adults unafraid of taking a chance, Ford said. Such companies experiment with dozens of approaches and reject the ones that don’t work, he noted.

Where 10,000 opportunities are brewing, large organizations can “biet off” 100, suggested panelist Eric Barth, TSYS senior director, product and strategy.

Payments Source, October 1, 2012