First data Corp has combined its MoneyZap person-to-person payments service with recently-acquired technology from Achex to meet an anticipated demand for e-mail-based consumer-to-business payments.
Elaine Bolle, president of Achex, comments: "By providing the MoneyZap service on the Achex platform, First Data businesses will be well positioned to meet the future online payment processing needs of both businesses and consumers."
The emerging e-mail payments market is expected to grow exponentially over the next five years, rivalling the growth of credit cards and ATMs. TowerGroup estimates that the volume of e-mail payment transactions will grow from 42 million transactions in 2000 to more than 4 billion in 2005.
While the current market is dominated by person-to-person, or P2P, transactions, greater revenue potential is expected from online consumer-to-business and business-to-business transactions. According to TowerGroup, consumer-to-business payment volume is expected to top 31 billion transactions annually by 2005, creating a market worth an estimated $443 billion.
The Achex service, based on a patent-pending infrastructure and business process, uses the Internet and existing payment networks to transfer funds online from existing bank accounts. Founded in 1999, Achex was acquired by First Data in July 2001.