Kazem Aminaee, Spire Payments: "Transaction. Interaction. Convergence – our core philosophy"

Wednesday 10 December 2014 10:48 CET | Editor: Melisande Mual | Interview

By applying this three-stage philosophy, Spire Payments has leveraged its expertise to bring to market an entire family of POS solutions

Could you elaborate on the company’s profile regarding the solutions it develops and to whom they are addressed?

Spire Payments’ strapline is “Transaction. Interaction. Convergence”. This core philosophy is fundamental to our strategy.

Transaction: we enable payment transactions over any type of network (WiFi, GPRS, 3G, IP, dial-up) to any end-point (smartphone, iPad, countertop PoS, wireless PoS, mPOS, unattended kiosk etc.) in any segment (retail, banking, hospitality, transportation, healthcare, eccommerce, micromerchant etc)

Interaction: we can develop any type of interactive application (loyalty, couponing, vouchers, email receipt, social media etc) and we have a best-in-class TMS to manage interactively an installed PoS base.

Convergence: we promote not only the convergence of non-payment specific technologies to payment (NFC, contactless cards, QR code), payment capability in non-traditional payment segments (telcos), but also the convergence of traditional payment infrastructures towards cloud-based solutions and promote convergence from thick-client to thin-client payment solutions.

By applying this three-stage philosophy, Spire Payments has leveraged its expertise to bring to market an entire family of POS solutions that enable payment transactions to be performed in any environment, over any type of network: unattended, countertop, portable, mobile and mPOS. These devices are supported by Spire Payment’s state-of-the-art TMS, allowing applications to be remotely loaded and managed across entire estates. We see mPOS as a perfect example of the convergence of technologies and this fits the third stage of our philosophy. As such, we have invested heavily in this market sector and launched two new mPOS devices at Cartes 2014.

According to Forrester Market Overview, an overwhelming majority of retailers plans to implement mobile point of service in 2015. Against this backdrop, what are the key challenges merchants are facing when they choose and implement an mPos solution?

Spire Payments is one of the world’s leading mPOS providers. This has been built on the unprecedented success of the PosMateSmart and further strengthened by the launch of the SPm20 and SPm2. mPOS is the most significant and innovative development in card payments and presents a challenge for merchants because the business model and the value chain are still in flux. Spire Payments is embracing this challenge head-on by associating itself with partners who provide key elements of the value chain and by providing a complete range of mPOS solutions. The PosMateSmart, the world’s first fully approved Chip and PIN mPOS device, is currently deployed in multiple international ecosystems in micro-merchant environments. The new SPm20 is a versatile mobile payment platform which can be used by the micro merchant and environments demanding higher throughput (SME and Tier 1 and 2 retailers). Incorporating contactless and NFC capability (payWave, PayPass and ExpressPay certified) and a full docking option. The SPm20 also supports Spire Payments’ comprehensive Linux-based inSPire development environment. Its ‘little brother’, the SPm2, specifically meets the needs of the micro merchant providing a device that is compact, simple to use, robust and competitively priced, yet with excellent battery life.

How would you describe your philosophical stance concerning digital/online security?

In the payments world, security is paramount and Spire Payments has a family of terminals sharing the same strong security design principles (for both hardware and software) certified PCI-PTS 3.x, 4.x and UKCARDS CC. The extensive use of open source software, at all levels (e.g. Linux, OpenSSL), provides a secure by-transparency platform that is a fundamental building block for security in the payments industry. Moreover, Spire Payments has implemented its own Certification Authority (CA), which is using a Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) for system and application software authentication /signature and, in which domain separation exists not only between systems (firmware) and applications, but also between application developers /providers, for even stronger protection and accountability. Finally, we have implemented SRED, which is using a highly innovative and flexible approach and one of the key ingredients for the implementation of P2PE. Spire Payments’ approach to security is highly efficient in that it is designed for cost-effective terminal and application deployment through a “write-once-run-anywhere” approach. These same security principles protect applications and data across all Spire Payments terminals.

Is Spire Payments considering nailing an omni-channel payments solution to its development roadmap, bearing in mind that omni-channel is the macro trend in e-retail?

It is the transaction and convergence aspect of our core philosophy that perfectly aligns with the omni-channel principle. Spire can manage payment through any channel and to any device by offering a complete range of interoperable transaction devices. Convergence is the ultimate conclusion of the “omni-channel” principle and we promote convergence from thick-client to thin-client payment solutions.

As of now, Spire Payments has implemented a customer base in Europe, the Middle East, India and Australia. What is the next region where you will be implementing the following customer base?

Since its creation in August 2011, Spire Payments has expanded its presence worldwide through direct investments and channel partnerships to become a true global partner. We have expanded our original two country coverage to 22 countries in Northern Europe, Central Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Asia, all in less than 36 months.

In March 2013, we announced the acquisition of Thyron Payments, a world leading mobile payment technology provider and, in March 2014, Altius Plus, a Russia-based payment software development house known for its expertise and 15+ years of payment application development. By the end of November, we will have announced yet another acquisition in the Middle East that will further solidify our position in that region.

Our Thyron Payments mPOS acquisition allowed us to deploy India’s first chip and PIN mPOS solution in the Chennai area, promoted by Bijlipay for the Indian Overseas Bank, while in France it allows us to deploy with one of the country’s largest banks, Credit Agricole, for their national mPOS project. In fact, our PosMate Smart mPOS device was the first mPOS device ever to be certified by France’s GIE Cartes Bancaire.

In September 2014, we also announced our latest partner, Avatek, in Argentina as well as our first deal to supply Avatek with several thousand SP line products.

After Europe, the Middle East, India and Australia, Latin America is the next natural step for us as we continue to grow, evolve and innovate.

About the author

This strong culture and set of values is carried by the Spire Payments CEO, Kazem Aminaee who has more than 20 years experience in electronic payment and smart card industries. Kazem was formerly President of Hypercom Europe, Middle East and Africa from 2007 to 2011. He previously held multiple executive positions in the Electronic Payment sector including Chief Marketing Officer and Head of Product Development of Ingenico Group and Senior Vice President, Financial Services EMEA of Gemalto. Kazem is assisted by a team of professionals who bring together a wealth of knowledge and expertise from the payments and various other industries.

About the company

In a world of converging technologies in which ecommerce, mobile commerce, and social networks cross over into traditional electronic payment, Spire Payments applies its thirty years of expertise to bring to market innovative, highly secure and future proof devices and solutions that promote seamless payment transactions to all end-points around a user experience that is both interactive and rewarding. Spire Payments, the fastest growing European POS solutions provider, is one of the original pioneers to develop world-class secure electronic payment solutions - from fixed, portable and mobile payment solutions to PIN pads and unattended terminals for integration with cash register systems and self-service kiosks.

Free Headlines in your E-mail

Every day we send out a free e-mail with the most important headlines of the last 24 hours.

Subscribe now

Keywords: payment transactions, ecommerce, mobile commerce, online payments, NFC, contactless cards, QR code, Spire Payments
Countries: World

Industry Events