Podcasts

Wirecard’s Deirdre Ives: ‘Our customers are driving innovation’

  • Deirdre Ives lead Citi's prepaid card business through an acquisition by Wirecard.
  • Wirecard's Managing Director of North America joins us on the podcast to discuss innovation, Chinese payments, and mobile wallets.
close

Email a Friend

Wirecard is a global technology group that enables companies to accept payments from all sales channels. The German company operates in 35 countries and in over 100 transaction currencies with connections to more than 200 international payment networks, including American Express, Alipay, WeChat Pay, Apple Pay and China UnionPay, among others.

With its acquisition of Citicard’s prepaid business in 2016, the firm is expanding its presence in the U.S. Deirdre Ives lead Citicard’s prepaid business and now is the managing director for Wirecard North America.

Deirdre Ives is our guest today for the Tearsheet Podcast.

SubscribeiTunes I SoundCloud

Below are highlights of the episode, edited for clarity.

The driver of payment innovation
Ultimately, I see customers driving innovation. It’s their preferences and comfort level with things like convenience and security that we need to meet. In the end, that’s what drives all our technical innovation. It’s not tech for tech sake or trying to convince consumers to use what’s best for us but the needs and preferences of real people.

Security in payments
I see two major themes when it comes to innovation: security and increasingly flexible, personalized mobile payments. If you look at the rise of Europay, Mastercard and Visa and contactless terminals have been a boon to U.S. retailers, especially for brick and mortar shops trying to stay competitive in a ecommerce-focused environment. It’s helped merchants stay competitive and ease consumer concerns about the safety of their personal information. As part of that, there’s been a tremendous advances in tokenization. It’s quite possible that credit cards are the most secure form of transaction out there especially when integrated with a mobile wallet.

Biometric identifiers have improved security significantly. Things like thumbprints have become standard practice. We’re looking at biometrics like facial recognition and retinal IDs. As sci-fi as these sound, at the end, it’s all about reducing risk and adding value for the customer.

Payments, personalization, and social tools
When I look at the world today, much of the innovation we’re seeing in the industry is coming from the rise of mobile payments in the context of social tools. The most famous examples come from China. Statistics on wireless payments there are staggering. WeChat Pay, the mobile wallet function of the WeChat app, is actively used by 600 million consumers each month. 44.5 percent of people use the app to avoid carrying cash. Alipay has 520 million worldwide consumers. Both are Wirecard consumers and the one thing we’re looking to do is how to introduce these and similar platforms to the U.S. market in order to serve that global consumer base in North America.

Slow mobile wallet adoption in the U.S.
These things always take time. Historically, consumers take a while to come around to new payment methods. It’s generally been the banks, merchants, and payment facilitators helping consumers adopt new payment methods. If you think about it, checks were first used in the 1680s to help farmers and businessmen, but they weren’t widely adopted until centuries later. The earliest credit cards were introduced in the 1950s and now they’re a central part of our lives. But that was a decades long process and what got them there was banks and merchants offering perks to drive adoption. The same applies to mobile wallets. They’ll mature as retailers roll out better reward and loyalty frameworks for them and make them easy to use. So, when we reflect back on how Wirecard can help, it’s up to us to drive adoption, both in how we go to market and in the technology we develop.

0 comments on “Wirecard’s Deirdre Ives: ‘Our customers are driving innovation’”

Podcasts

‘We see more and more nonprofits adopt the fintech model’: Prudential Financial’s Sarah Keh

  • Large financial organizations are increasing their work in their communities and with inclusivity.
  • Prudential's Sarah Keh joins us on the podcast to talk about her work with nonprofits and the city of Newark, New Jersey.
Zachary Miller | October 14, 2021
Podcasts

Embedding communications into financial services with Twilio’s Bijon Mehta

  • Twilio's embedded communications tools work behind the scenes in many of today's top fintechs and FIs.
  • Bijon Mehta, who leads the firm's work in financial services, joins us on the podcast to shed some light on where the firm grows from here.
Zachary Miller | September 21, 2021
Data, Podcasts

‘Data aggregation is used today in ways we wouldn’t have thought about five years ago’: Fiserv’s Kevin Hughes

  • Fiserv enables banks, credit unions, and fintechs to aggregate data seamlessly and securely.
  • Kevin Hughes, who manages the AllData products, talks to Tearsheet about changes in the aggregation field and where it's heading.
Fiserv | September 09, 2021
Podcasts

Behind the launch of the Dayforce Wallet: Ceridian’s Seth Ross

  • As a payroll provider, Ceridian moves $300 billion in wages yearly.
  • Seth Ross, who runs the firm's embedded finance group, joins the podcast to talk about Ceridian's move into banking and early wage access.
Zachary Miller | September 08, 2021
Podcasts

‘We bring the instant gratification from the lottery to help incentivize people to save’: Adam Moelis, Yotta

Zachary Miller | September 01, 2021
More Articles