Payments Industry Predictions for 2019

January 07, 2019 Payments
By Owen Linderholm, Senior Content Strategist
By Owen Linderholm, Senior Content Strategist

2019 crystal ball

2018 was a busy year in the world of payments as fintechs have continued to disrupt and force reactions from other financial institutions. Some of the things we saw during the year were the rise of omnichannel payments, consolidation in the market as some technologies matured, and an expected increase in sophistication in fraud and money laundering.

As we head into 2019 and what looks currently like a potentially rocky year for financial markets, it’s time to gaze into a crystal ball and provide a few predictions for the year ahead. We asked some of the payments industry experts at WePay to give us thoughts on what they see coming. Common predictions arose such as continued consolidation in the fintech and payments space, rapid growth in adoption and use of faster payments solutions and a fintech getting granted a chartered bank license in the US. The devil can be in the details though, so here are the unadulterated predictions.

Zen Banerjee – Director, Global Payments

  • Payment facilitators begin to outgrow many traditional acquirers in volume.
  • The growth of mobile wallet payments at POS systems – PayPal, Venmo, ApplePay, Amazon, ChasePay
  • A tech company will get a chartered bank license in the US – Amazon, Square, PayPal, SoFi to name a few of possible candidates.
  • Faster payments sees acceleration in B2B payments.

Rich Aberman – Chief Strategy Officer

  • Accelerated adoption of Machine Learning and AI among major financial institutions to fight fraud, increase automation, drive insights/offers, etc.
  • Financial Institutions continuing to adopt open banking and API-first strategies.
  • More and more software platforms and marketplaces offering financial services beyond payments (e.g. lending, insurance, issuing).
  • The last few years have been about data breaches. I’m predicting similar announcements around fraud attacks (similar to the recent Venmo announcement).

Aditi Gupta – Director of Product Management

  • 2019 will be the year of Faster Payments as instant bank transfers pick up steam worldwide.
  • Paper checks will see an accelerated decline.
  • Payments will become increasingly invisible. Innovation (open APIs, frictionless checkout, improvements in payment security) and standardization in the form of PSD2, 3DS2.0, Secure Remote Commerce (SRC) will drive technology adoption and continue to push payments to the background.

Matt Schrey – Head of Strategic Sales

  • The growth of consumer spend on reward cards slows and perhaps even drops, with resulting Interchange relief to merchants, who will continue to pursue legal action against the Card Networks regardless.
  • A leading fintech will successfully apply for and be granted OCC’s Special Purpose National Bank Charter.

Sireesh Potireddy – Senior Director of Product Management

  • We saw considerable acquisitions/consolidation in 2018 (PayPal acquiring HyperWallet, iZettle and earmarking $3B in acquisitions, Vantiv / WorldPay merger) which will continue in 2019. Consolidation will increase significantly if the market heads toward a recession.
  • Continued focus on providing “instant” and “always on” experiences to consumers and merchants – Push 2 Debit, RTP, refund authorization (so consumers can get instant notification when a refund is issued), instant onboarding
  • A movement to open standards – Open Banking driven by PSD 2.0, W3C’s PaymentRequest API (Visa SRC will supposedly work with W3C), ISO 20022 for faster payments.

Catherine Jing – Payments Manager, Global Core Payments

  • More players/solutions tackling the identity verification/security area.
  • Open banking to continue getting adoptions in the industry.
  • Real-time / instant payments start to grow significantly and become the basic requirement from consumers.

About the author


Owen Linderholm, Senior Content Strategist

Owen Linderholm is Senior Content Strategist at WePay. He has previously held content and editorial roles at Yahoo, Microsoft, IDG and the BBC.

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