Interview with:Peter Mollins, VP Marketing, Spreedly
What has happened in the Payments industry over the past year to drive growth?
At Spreedly, we’re seeing increasing levels of innovation in the payments space — particularly among high-growth companies. Businesses now recognize that payments are a key part of the customer experience. As a result, e-commerce services are investing in building applications that match their specific business needs and customer expectations.
Yet, too often, inflexible payments stacks are just not good matches to build in the flexibility these companies need. That means we’re seeing more high growth companies look at how they can build flexibility and innovation into their payments stack. That means connecting to multiple payment gateways, storing cards securely and independently, and connecting to third-party partners for transactions.
Do you see changes in the breakdown of the companies participating in fintech events in recent years? E wallets? PSPs? Cryptocurrency? Mobile?
There have definitely been waves of groups of businesses attending events. Mobile has become deeply embedded in every company’s model. Security and cryptocurrency remain major players at events. But the overarching meta-trend remains: how can e-commerce services deliver the best possible customer experience every day.
What are the hottest business fields this year with regards to payments?
The root of most payments innovation is the need to deliver a great customer experience. As a result, when we survey the market, we look for fields that directly address that experience. And in many ways, that comes back to the drive toward innovation and flexibility that companies are building themselves into their e-commerce services.
These include connecting into multiple payment gateways and with multiple partners to transact. The reasons for this could be many: international expansion compels a merchant to look for additional payment coverage. It could be to reduce risk and dependency on a particular third-party payment provider. It could even be because of the very nature of the business model of the e-commerce service itself.
I’ve spoken about the critical requirement of building a great customer experience at every stage of a purchase — including the payments step. Converging with these need for convenience is the need for security and privacy. Optimizing for a frictionless transaction can be diametrically opposed to optimizing for security.
As a result, we’re seeing interesting developments around topics like 3DS 2.0 and network tokenization as ways to address both “polarities”.
Do you plan any surprises or new things to the conference this year?
The Spreedly team launched the PAYMENTSfn conference because we saw a gap in the events market. We felt that fintech and payments events weren’t geared specifically to payments engineers and technologists. Our first edition of the event in May 2018 was a tremendous success. We had great content, attendees, networking, and sponsors.
Now we’re looking to build on that momentum with the second edition. Because of the positive responses, we’ve doubled-down on technical sessions. As a result, we’ve added a second day to the event and are inviting technical presenters to submit presentations.
What are your best 3 tips for companies that participate expos in generating leads and eventually sales?
We love to attend fintech, payments, and also industry events. The networking and learning at a live event just can’t be beat. After all, that’s why we launched PAYMENTSfn. Our three tips for a great expo are:
- Know the Event: Success starts with choosing the right event to attend. Look at the sponsors to get a sense for who is putting their money behind this. Review the sponsorship brochures to understand the make-up of attendees. And look at past and current speakers to get a sense for editorial focus.
- Pre-Book Meetings: It’s great to randomly bump into interesting people, but that’s icing on the cake. Use sponsorships and event apps to identify who your team should speak to ahead of time, and book those meetings.
- Follow-Up: The win doesn’t come from a stack of business cards. It comes from the next steps that are taken after the glow of the event fades.
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