Cashless Payments Solutions with Carly Furman of Nayax
As the options to simplify our lives and digitize our wallets increase every day, the demand for unattended payment solutions technology grows as well. On this episode Carly Furman, the CEO of Nayax North America joins us to talk about the future of cashless payments, increased consumer data security in credit transactions, and the power of unattended transaction capability for business owners.
Payments & Fintech Insights In This Episode
- Why the utilization of cashless payment technology is so important for both operators and consumers.
- The benefits and challenges of adopting unattended cashless payments solutions.
- Democratizing the payment experience.
- How the increased security of EMV transactions is a necessity for consumers, as well as reducing fraud.
- And so much more!
Featured on the Show
- Connect with Carly Furman: LinkedIn
- Connect with Nayax: LinkedIn | Facebook | Twitter
- Connect with the Show: LinkedIn | Facebook | Twitter
- Subscribe to the Show: Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Google Podcasts | Show Hub
Heather: Welcome to “PayPod: The Payments and Fintech Podcast.” Listen along as we interview entrepreneurs and thought leaders from across the FinTech world, from merchant services, to micro-lending, from banking to Bitcoin, we cover it all. Hi, everyone. Welcome to another episode of “PayPod.” I’m your host, Heather Bodie. And today, we are going to be discussing the world of cashless payments. Joining me to help explore this topic is Carly Furman, the CEO of Nayax North America, a leading cashless solutions provider. Carly, welcome to the show.
Carly: Thank you so much for having me, Heather.
Heather: So, to get us started, tell us a little bit about yourself. How did you find your way into FinTech, and more specifically the payment side of things?
Carly: Sure. I went to school at the University of California, Santa Barbara. I’m a Southern California girl at heart and have an economics degree. And after school, became a CPA and went the public accounting route because just wasn’t sure exactly what I wanted to get into. And through that kind of public accounting experience got exposed to biotech and FinTech primarily. And I really just fell in love with the FinTech space. And was lucky enough through kind of how my career twisted and turned to be introduced to Nayax, who is a global payment solution provider and a leader in the cashless space. And that’s kind of how our life and our careers take us. So, it’s been a cool opportunity. And I really can’t imagine actually not being in payments now.
Heather: So, let’s talk about Nayax. We know retailers have seemingly endless options when it comes to different payment solutions. Why should retailers work with Nayax?
Carly: Sure. So, you know, really where our niche has been, historically, is in unattended cashless payments, which, you know, in light of, especially COVID and a need for social distancing and contactless, cashless payments has really kind of bolstered the visibility of what unattended payments is. But, you know, in a nutshell, what we do at Nayax is for about democratizing the payment experience and being a full end-to-end cashless solution provider. So, we develop and make our own hardware in-house and we do handle all the certifications, the entire PCI environment, as well as give a full reporting and cloud-based solution, and also act as the merchant on record or payment facilitator. So, you know, handle all the KYC and easy onboarding. So, our customers range from unattended operators. You could have one vending machine as a gig to large enterprise operators that are operating unattended kiosks, and massage chairs, and electric vehicle charging stations, and, you know, multibillion-dollar food and beverage operations. So, it’s a really cool space to be in, but that’s really, you know, where Nayax focus has been.
Heather: Since it’s something that’ll come up multiple times in our conversation, I wanna touch really quickly on the acronym, EMV. Can you tell us a little bit about the difference between the sort of traditional use of a card that sort of swipe and sign, versus what it means to have an EMV transaction?
Carly: Sure. Yeah. When we’re talking about EMV, that’s actually using the chip that is now on a lot of the credit cards that we all have. So, in the U.S., it’s really been accelerated over the past few years by the card brands, ensuring that the card issuers we’re getting out EMV enabled cards. EMV stands for Europay, MasterCard and Visa. What really all that means is using the chip in the card to make a contact, so inserting it in a payment terminal, or tapping the card, or being able to use it with Apple Pay or Google Pay. Versus the traditional way of MagSwipe, which is just using that static strip on the back of a card and swiping it, which, of course, is really not secure, since information is dynamic and, you know, really was opening up to a kind of counterfeit card fraud.
Heather: We’re gonna get to security and fraud, and those things a little bit later. But before we go there, I wanna talk a little bit about the consumer experience, but also adopting the cashless experience with the retailers. Consumers are craving efficient technology more and more. I mean, to be honest, I feel like the average person has come to expect it regardless of the size of the business that they’re engaging with. What has been the biggest challenge for the retailers in adopting a cashless payments technology?
Carly: I’d agree with you. I think that now it’s not, you know, do you have cashless payments, it’s how you’re accepting and making sure you’re taking the entire breadth of cashless payments. Because, I think, you know, we’ll touch on it probably later in our conversations, but cashless payments. EMV transactions is really a requirement now. Not accepting EMV and only accepting a MagSwipe card is not only is it not secure, but it’s also giving consumers the impression on that their security is not that important, as well as I think retailers are limiting their options for taking cashless payments. When we look at the unattended environment, starting in April of this year, contactless payments, which are the number one growing type of card transaction right now. You know, being able to TAP a card or pay with a mobile phone, that’s gonna be required to be run as an EMV transaction. So, using that terminal that’s certified to accept that dynamic to payment, versus there was kind of a legacy way. You could still take a contactless payment, but only utilizing the technology that was still in that legacy magnetic strip.
So, I think when you’re talking about, you know, almost the issues that retailers see, a lot of it has been with the perceived cost of adoption. I really think I would challenge that and say that the cost is actually not to adopt the technology. You know, you’re gonna be losing out on contactless payments. You’re losing out on people dealing with the campaign in a secure way. And, you know, let’s be honest, you know, a lot of us aren’t carrying cash. A lot of us aren’t even carrying our wallets anymore. To be losing out on that on a really huge growing amount of the consumer base, I think is definitely more costly than adopting the technology.
Heather: It is wild how we do have the option to no longer carry a wallet because of digital wallet adoption. And I feel like it happened to me a couple years ago, but I’m still… I can like feel it in my guts. I had gone to a store, stood in line for way too long, got to the register, and realized I didn’t have my wallet on me. And the sweepers behind the counter was like, “Well, don’t you have it on your phone”? And I was like, “Oh, I absolutely do.”
Carly: I do.
Heather: I absolutely do. Now, it’s the primary way that I transact. So, yeah, absolutely is the way of the future. So, payment solutions they’re paramount to the success of any business, but as a business owner, I mean, I know from personal experience, from my entrepreneurial days, that there are so many things going on in your mind at all times. Inevitably, you’re gonna have somebody who needs to troubleshoot an issue with the technology. How does Nayax approach providing quality customer support?
Carly: Look, I think, you know, you’re gonna always have, especially in the business of unattended that, you know, we really focus on. I mean, you’re gonna always have a subset of the population that’s gonna want the more traditional support infrastructure. And that’s very important that, you know, we have very important, and we’ve bolstered up as we’ve grown our tech support and ensure that, you know, it’s flexible hours that work with our retailers. But I think also so many of us want a more self-serve type of training and experience. So, we do a lot of webinars that, of course, are recorded. We have a university, so people can understand how to use our backend management system, as well as optimize some of the engagement functionalities that we also offer with our cashless payment solution on their own time, and be able to delve deeper into really fully utilizing our total solution, as well as helping a help bot and chatbots. So, I think it’s being able to ensure that whoever our customers are, we refer to our customers as operators. Our operators are they are using the Nayax solution, but they’re able to really get that kind of self-help and training that they need in a manner that is easily digestible for their learning style.
Heather: Now, as promised, let’s go back to something that we touched on a little bit earlier. Let’s talk security and privacy. Data breaches, when it comes to credit card payments seem to be more and more common. But I think that’s, particularly when we’re talking about the days before chip and pin transactions, what is Nayax’s approach and philosophy when it comes to security?
Carly: So, I mean, I think, first and foremost, when we’re talking about what our commitment is to our customers as a payment solution provider, before everything else, it’s to be able to accept any and all available payments in the most secure manner. Everything else is icing on the cake, right? When we’re talking about engagement, and loyalty programs, and all these other great soft features that we do offer. But first and foremost, the security is paramount. So, from our standpoint, we provide the entire infrastructure. So, we have a proprietary skipping server mechanism that relies on multiple redundant PCI-DSS level 1 servers. We handle all of the EMV. So, our devices are L1, L2, which is the contact list on the device and the contact certifications to accept EMV transactions, as well as the end certifications with our processing partners globally, and tons of other certifications. But to really ensure that optimal secure environment is really what is crucial to us.
Heather: Let’s shift to regulation and compliance. What does the legal framework look like around EMVs? And what are the benefits of maintaining a high compliance standard?
Carly: When we’re talking about EMV acceptance, it’s kind of been phased in in the U.S. by different protocols. So, actually fuel, and now unattended retailers were one of the last waves to have some kind of EMV requirement. So, while it’s still allowed to do the traditional swipe card, being able to use what we call the MagSwipe kernels, we’re gonna add static information. That’s how it’s in the back of a card. To do a contactless transaction is going to be disabled by the card brands. So, you know, when we’re talking about benefits, and one huge one is to actually be able to take, we see now 30%-plus of Nayax U.S. transactions coming through our contact list. So, if someone isn’t actually utilizing a fully compliant EMV solution, they’re gonna be losing this massively growing trend of transaction types. Additionally, chargebacks. So, who actually gets the chargeback? If a credit card transaction is fraudulent, that is passed from the issuers to the acquirer, and they’re to the retailer. So, there’s fees now associated, there’s blocking of the main type of growing transaction contact list, as well as we see that there’s less failures of the transactions when EMV transactions are enabled.
Heather: Right. Again, back to this memory of swiping at every terminal, I feel like, you know, one in five times they would ask you to go ahead and swipe again and go ahead and swipe again.
Heather: And I don’t have that experience at all with the sort of chip and tap technology.
Carly: A hundred percent.
Heather: It’s fascinating. So, what do you see for the future of cashless payments? I mean, if we’re looking long-term, and by long-term, I mean like 5, 10 years down the road.
Carly: Yeah. I think we’re gonna see an increase in omnichannel payments, right? You know, I think that’s, in some ways, shows a bit buzzy, you know, of a word now, but it really does make sense, right? So, world’s getting smaller, our retailers need multiple ways to be able to sell their products and services. So, an increase in omnichannel, and transparent, and efficient payment methods. I also think we’re gonna see a huge increase in alternative payment methods or APMs. So, social payments, of course, cryptocurrency, and even being able to ensure that a contact list, you know, whether it’s a wearable, your phone is not only backed by a credit card, but by any of these APMs. So, that ease it’s gonna be crucial.
Heather: What’s next for Nayax? Any exciting offerings, or projects, or partnerships, anything you can let us in on?
Carly: Oh, my gosh. There’s so much, just crazy in a good way, right?
Carly: But we’re looking at the U.S. specifically, is our rolling out of additional alternative payment methods through a universal QR code. So, being able to accept PayPal, and Alipay, and Venmo on the device with a universal QR code. So, having one easy user experience to be able to take any and all alternative payment methods, both social payments, Asian alternative payment methods. So, that’s something that I think is gonna really start taking off more and more.
Heather: I’m incredibly impressed by the resurgence of the QR code. Feel like it had its day, it disappeared. And then if there is any sort of silver lining from the pandemic, seeing it come back, and make so many interactions so much more efficient has been really surprising. I did not expect it. All right. We’re gonna close out with a segment we do on every show. Five questions, rapid-fire. Carly, are you ready?
Carly: I think so, Heather. Let’s do it.
Heather: Okay. Make a prediction about the changes in the immediate future of cashless payments. In general, what do you expect will happen in the next 12 to 24 months?
Carly: Huge increase in contactless payments, and need for and desire for alternative methods in the U.S.
Heather: What’s one cool piece of payment or finance-related technology you’ve come across recently that impresses you?
Carly: I think the ability to take TAP on phone payments is super cool without any hardware. And we’re gonna see a lot more of that.
Heather: In the next five years, most people will make a purchase with either Bitcoin, Apple Pay, or some other TAP product, which one, and why?
Carly: Both because they’re synonymous with each other. So Apple Pay in mobile wallet is a way to make the payment, which is gonna be funded by alternative payment methods like cryptocurrency and APMs.
Heather: What’s one piece of advice you have for someone considering the payments or financial technology industry as a career. And I would be remiss not to say we are recording the day after National Women’s Day. If it is specific to being a woman in FinTech, that would make it even better.
Carly: Do it. Get into this industry. At the end of the day, no matter how the world is changing, everyone’s gonna always need to pay for something. So, this is incredibly dynamic, tons of job stability. And I think women’s insights as the ones who traditionally are running households and have, you know, just our unique point of view. We need more women in FinTech.
Heather: Yes, yes, yes, yes. What’s the best business advice you’ve ever received, and from whom?
Carly: Don’t turn down an opportunity, just don’t say no.
Heather: Oh, my gosh. Can you say more about that?
Carly: Again, speaking about women, I think a lot of times too in technology roles, right, there’s that cliche of an imposter syndrome. But I was once given great advice by one of my first bosses, who was also a woman, who told me everyone has to do something the first time. So, you might as well just be the one to figure it out and take that plunge. And that’s always kind of been something that I’ve reminded myself. You have the confidence in yourself, you have a good support system and way to figure things out, just don’t say no and you’ll be able to figure it out.
Heather: I needed to hear that today too, so thank you. That does it for our show today. Thank you, Carly, so much for joining us. If folks wanna get in touch with you or learn more about Nayax, where can they find you?
Carly: Feel free to connect with me on LinkedIn, Carly Furman, and also nayax.com. You can go to our website, and that’s how you can get more information about Nayax and reach out to our entire Nayax family.
Heather: Great. Thank you so much for joining us, Carly.
Carly: Thank you, Heather, for having me. I appreciate it.
Heather: If you enjoyed this episode and wanna hear more, head on over to soarpay.com/podcast to subscribe on your podcast listening platform of choice, that’s soarpay.com/podcast.
Nayax is a leading cashless solutions provider offering a complete solution including localized cashless payment acceptance, management suite, and consumer engagement tools, enabling merchants to conduct commerce anywhere, at any time.