Payment initiation: the new age of acquiring
The payments business is being transformed and it’s forcing players in the sector to rethink traditional acquiring structures, along with their value generation and monetization models.
A case in point is Spanish fintech Belvo, which specializes in data management. This week, it received a payment initiator license (ITP) in Brazil, with which it can start using the Pix instant payment system to process payments
This formula does away with traditional intermediaries — such as acquirers — and at the same time introduces a new business model for the industry.
“Account-to-account payments are going to change the mentality we had of charging a percentage of the transaction’s value,” Albert Morales, Belvo’s manager in Brazil, tells iupana. “The business models it creates are in addition to — above — payments,” he adds.
While initiating payments doesn’t generate a profit on its own, it allows Belvo to strengthen the data intelligence services it offers clients, which translates into additional income for
Institutions such as Banco do Brasil, Itaú Unibanco, Bradesco and the fintech Mercado Pago comprise the list of payment initiators in Brazil, which underscores the interest of industry giants in the segment.
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Brazil in numbers
The open finance model is already a reality in Brazil, with 350 million API calls per week, almost 10 million consents and 800 participating institutions, including some that are not obliged to take part. The figures were shared by Otávio Damaso, director of regulation at the Central Bank, at ABFintechs’ Fintouch event this week.
“Open finance is already happening and it is also having a concrete impact on clients. We know of use cases where information is being shared within the ecosystem. But there is still the challenge of making it clear to the client who has benefited from open finance, that it is a
According to Damaso, the fact that financial institutions that were not required to participate in the system joined it voluntarily is evidence that it works and shows there is an opportunity for offering value to customers.
Looking to the future, Damaso points out that open finance will play a fundamental role in the transformation of the payment industry, specifically Pix, as well as the entire agenda for tokenization, DeFi and Brazil’s CBDC, the digital real.
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