IBM recently announced that Visa has won IBM’s annual Information on Demand 2010 Innovation Award. The award is given in recognition of Visa’s leadership in using cutting-edge information technology and real-time data analytics. This mastery of data lets Visa offer an incredible array of products and services that improve the consumer payment experience and drive growth for our clients.
Visa has spent decades investing in the creation of one of the most robust, secure and reliable electronic payments networks in the world: VisaNet. Until now, however, the ability to connect to the network has been limited. We recognize that innovative ideas come from many people and places, and that independent developers have transformed many other industries.
This is why we’re excited to announce today that Visa is accelerating innovation in electronic payments by opening its leading payments network to independent developers with a significant enhancement to the Authorize.Net Developer Center.
Following the announcement today of our new partnership with Kiva.org, we wanted to share with you a great video of Premal Shah, President of Kiva. In the video, Premal explains what Kiva is, how it works, why it is different from traditional loans and how Kiva and Visa are teaming up to expand opportunities for U.S. small businesses through the power of microloans.
You will hear Premal speak about how small businesses, which represent 87 percent of business here in the U.S., are key to economic growth and job generation. He explains how these microloans are making tangible differences in the lives of small business owners and entrepreneurs every day. These are just some of the many reasons we are so excited to be working with Kiva. Please take a moment to view the video and visit kiva.org/visa to see how you can help a U.S. small business and make a difference.
Bill came to Visa from GSMA, a telecom trade association, where he was Chief Commercial Officer. At Visa, Bill’s charge is to further advance Visa’s mobile strategy, working in collaboration with the wireless and financial services industries to bring mobile payments and related services to consumers around the globe.
Mobile payments are still a nascent development, but with more than 4.8 billion mobile phones worldwide, the opportunity is tremendous. And as Bill notes, it’s a big part of Visa’s future. The company is currently testing contactless payments methods in over 20 markets located in both developed and developing countries. Our collaboration with DeviceFidelity— transforming a phone into a payment device—has already been introduced at high volume retailers, such as fast food, taxis, drug stores throughout New York and other metropolitan areas, where speed matters. Outside of the U.S., mobile phones are accessible in ways that a traditional payment infrastructure can’t reach. Visa is moving on all fronts—creating new mobile services, acquiring technologies and platforms, and working with leaders in wireless —to ensure that Visa’s network plays a vital role in bringing secure, reliable and globally interoperable mobile payments to consumers everywhere.
Learn more about Visa’s plans in the video below, and you’ll see that your cell phone may soon become your mobile wallet.
Visa has a longstanding commitment to culturally tailored financial education, so we’re particularly excited about our latest initiative in Mexico: “Professor Q: Discover the Magic Behind Your Financial Power.” The theatre performance takes a popular form of entertainment in Mexico and turns it into a chance to teach young people how to be smart with their money.
In the educational show, Professor Q, who is Merlin the Magician’s financial analyst, explains how to handle personal finances responsibly through the use of fun magic and illusions. The series focuses on saving, budgeting and how to use credit responsibly, providing youth from kindergarten through college with a better chance of leading a financially responsible life.
The video clip from the debut performance shows why Visa believes this type of education program creates an impact: the audience is engaged, laughing and learning. From South Africa and Mexico to the U.S. and Brazil, Visa will continue to lead by example with innovative, effective financial education theatre programs that directly reach audiences in a dynamic and compelling way.
New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees wrote a compelling op-ed about financial literacy running in today’s Politico. In the piece, Brees speaks personally about the missteps he made in college and why he feels so passionately about helping Americans improve their money management skills.
The importance of financial literacy is truly bipartisan, as evidenced by the diverse line up of Members in the House Financial Literacy Caucus. President Bush created the President’s Advisory Council on Financial Literacy, and President Obama continues to elevate the issue with Education Secretary Duncan and Treasury Secretary Geithner taking the lead for the Administration. You can see Michelle Greene, Obama’s former Deputy Assistant Secretary for Financial Education and Financial Access, at the Financial Literacy and Education Summit we held with the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago earlier this year.
Brees’ op-ed reminds us of the need for financial literacy and why both Democrats and Republicans see it as an important component in improving our collective economic health.
October is National Cyber Security Awareness month, dedicated to educating consumers and small business owners about how to protect themselves from hazards ranging from phishing scams to deceptive marketing practices.
Cyber security should be top of mind all year long. We know that a growing number of consumers want to play an active role in protecting their payment information online; and small business owners are looking for assistance in keeping their customers’ information safe as well.
To help, Visa is launching a new website full of practical tips for consumers on protecting account information, avoiding payment card scams, and resolving unauthorized card use. Check it out at www.visasecuritysense.com – we have information there in English and Spanish.