US-based payments outfit Hypercom is setting up an application service provider (ASP) division to serve European banks and Internet merchants. The new unit aims to offer onscreen advertising and Internet banking services at the retail point-of-sale.
The Hypercom ePic Service Centre will be based at the vendor's UK headquarters in Woking and will aim to provide a framework for delivering Internet-based applications and hosting services to the merchant countertop. In addition to offering electronic receipt capture, e-mail and advertising capabilities, the ASP intends to work with acquiring banks to make on-line merchant billing and Web-based direct banking available at the point-of-sale.
Jairo Gonzalez, president, Hypercom transaction systems group says: "In a recent survey of UK merchants, 70% of respondents expressed a desire to use their POS terminal for more than just processing credit and debit card transactions."
Hypercom's ePic product combines a touch screen-based payment terminal with an Internet-enabled retail POS appliance.
George Wallner, chairman, Hypercom Corporation says one of the first services to be launched by the new ASP division will be an electronic receipt capture and retrieval service. "From our survey of UK merchants 82% expressed an interest in receiving a service whereby they no longer had to keep copies of all transaction receipts in case they were ever disputed."
A further service that will be offered will be an email capability. Says Wallner: "This will allow banks, suppliers and customers to improve their communications with retail merchants. Emails will arrive cost effectively, directly at the point-of-sale, without the need for a PC. Only 22% of UK merchants surveyed currently have a business email address."
Hypercom says it will work with acquiring banks to make on-line merchant statementing and Web-based direct banking available at the point of sale, so that account balances can be checked, enquiries made, statements printed, and account administration carried out electronically from the retailer copuntertop.
Hypercom says it will also explore the potential for beaming local and national advertising messages direct to the LED display of the retailer terminal.