FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Aschheim (Munich)/Newcastle. Wirecard Card Solutions Ltd., a subsidiary of Wirecard AG, is now dealing with GPS (Global Processing Services) and Bottomline Technologies to support ”U” – a digital agency banking solution designed by UK Programme Manager FFF Ltd. The U Account offers its users improved current account functionality but without the hassle and cost of using a bank. Its focus on personalisation, easy digital access and transparent pricing for bolt-on account services are unique in the UK market.
With this, Wirecard Card Solutions (WDCS), the leading prepaid card provider in Europe, is introducing agency-banking services in the UK via existing banking relationships. The U account is WDCS’s and GPS’s first foray into agency banking whereby cardholders can make use of additional payment functionality including Direct Debit, Faster Payments and Bacs Credits along with standard prepaid account features.
The U Account targets people, who feel underserved and overcharged by the banks with a new type of highly personalisable prepaid current account that lets people budget better, pay their bills on time and avoid unnecessary bank charges. This includes an integrated solution to the Faster Payments Service and Direct Debits.
Tom Jennings, Managing Director at Wirecard Card Solutions, said: “The FinTech sector in UK is evolving rapidly as new products and services are being unveiled and the number of start ups entering the payments industry grows. This type of innovative and market-leading collaboration not only develops the products and services that Wirecard can offer but also supports FinTechs in disrupting the financial services sector.”
Alex Letts, Founder of U, adds “A scientific segmentation strategy underpins the U Account, driven by a model that aims to be 100% transparent. Bundled pricing options and a single user interface to extra accounts, combined with an easy money manager to help budgeting, make the U Account and its programme unique.”
“We are extremely pleased with the partnership we have built with Wirecard and Bottomline to introduce such an innovative product to the market“, said Suresh Vaghjiani, Managing Director (EMEA) at GPS. “The U Account demonstrates our platform’s capabilities allowing account holders to manage multiple Bacs enabled accounts each with their own unique account number, unlike other solutions in the market that use virtual accounts or virtual IBANS.“
WDCS, a UK-based company is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and operates under its Electronic Money license with permissions to issue cards throughout the SEPA region. As network owner of ICA and BIN range and principle member of MasterCard and Visa, WDCS has passporting permissions into all 27 European countries.
Built from the ground up, the GPS processing platform offers reliability and flexibility to support the Agency Banking solution. GPS integrated with market-leading payments provider Bottomline Technologies to incorporate a new set of payment rails and enhance the prepaid card proposition.
Sales & Marketing Manager
Global Processing Services (GPS) was founded in 2007 by the owners of Flex-e-Vouchers Limited (FEV). FEV was one of the pioneers of prepaid Programme management in the UK, having launched their first open-loop prepaid product in 2005. This was the first open-loop prepaid mall gift card in Europe and was the first prepaid card scheme of any kind for both the processor, Nomad Software, (now FIS in the UK) and the issuing bank, Newcastle Building Society (now Wirecard Solutions in the UK).
The founders of FEV decided to launch a second business, GPS. This decision arose principally from the limitations and weaknesses that FEV had experienced in using the Nomad Software processing platform to manage a prepaid business that was issuing in excess of 1 million cards per annum. FEV had branched into other areas of prepaid such as payroll and sub-prime banking solutions, and believed strongly that the processing platform was constraining growth for the programme management business, both in terms of its flexibility and general platform robustness. Using the experience gained from owning and operating one of the UK’s successful prepaid pioneers, GPS set about the task of building a processing platform from the ground up, focused solely on the particular needs of the prepaid business segment.
GPS built and accredited its processing platform between 2007 and 2009. The platform was initially MasterCard only (specifically Maestro) with products being added over the course of the following 2 years, i.e. MasterCard, Visa, contactless, virtual, etc. Recent additions include Visa credit certification, Visa payWave, fraud monitoring, real time data feeds, MasterCard RePower and multi-currency functionality. In 2009, FEV migrated its prepaid portfolio from FIS to GPS. From 2010 onwards, GPS began to market its processing platform to third party programme managers through Europe; and in 2013 the decision was made to break into the US market that began with rebranding the company and having the official launch in early 2014 at the APEX conference in Las Vegas.
At the core of the GPS transaction processing platform is an industry-leading, flexible and robust payment-processing application. Within the primary centre all key servers operate with hot backups making it highly resilient. We also operate a second disaster recovery datacentre which runs on an Active/Active basis with the primary datacentre so that in the event of a catastrophic failure of the primary centre (fire, flood, etc.), the secondary centre would automatically take over all processing.
The platform is virtualised and fully scalable with capacity being effectively unlimited. At the current time the platform runs at approximately 20% of capacity with the existing hardware configuration. By using an open architecture and the Cloud, the core application can support seamless integration with other GPS modules and third-party systems, giving clients real-time access to a range of channels and interfaces. This approach also facilitates the rapid deployment of technology and updates, whilst maintaining PCI DSS level-1 security standards.
The key distinguishing feature of the GPS platform is the configurability and flexibility that is passed to the programme manager. GPS recognises that prepaid programmes focussing on different sectors or demographic groups, or operated with multiple partners, will all have different needs. The flexibility to meet these needs is delivered via a hierarchy that provides for multi-level parameter-based configuration and control over all elements of the programme construct including: load sources; spend transaction types; value, velocity and volume limits; fees; transaction padding by MCC and for FX; and selective authorisation. This hierarchy and the multi-level control enable programmes for reporting and financial control to be organised efficiently. The platform delivers the flexibility needed for quickly and simply building or modifying programmes and products to meet business demands.
GPS’s programme managers are using one of the most robust processing platforms globally, which ensures their programmes are always online and functioning correctly. Since 2012 the platform has achieving 100% uptime for web services and authorisations. Ensuring our clients are able to stay competitive in the market place the development of the platform needs to stay current and we are currently working on MasterCard credit certification, Host Card Emulation, 3D Secure, Visa Fastpay and enhanced multi-currency.
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