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Interviews

AsiaPay: Adopting latest technologies in Market-Led Innovation to Become an APAC’s Leading digital Payment Service Provider

AsiaPay: Adopting latest technologies in Market-Led Innovation to Become an APAC's Leading digital Payment Service Provider 1

AsiaPay was founded in 2000 and is known as one of the leading digital payment processing service and solution houses in the Asia Pacific region. Their integrated payment services support the acceptance of credit and debit cards, netbanking, digital wallets, BNPL (buy-now-pay-later), crypto payment and many other local payment methods in Asia Pacific.

Wanda Rich, editor of Global Banking & Finance Review, interviewed Joseph Chan, CEO, to learn more about the company’s products and services and its approach to technology among other topics, starting with AsiaPay’s strategy and the achievements it has attained during its years of operation so far. “Our strategic vision is to be the leading digital payment service and technology player in Asia Pacific and beyond,” Joseph began. “Firstly, on the technical front, we have been PCI DSS Level 1 compliant since 2006, as one of the earliest PSPs in Asia Pacific to achieve such a high data security standard for payment processing over 16 years. Secondly, on payment authentication, we are one of the very few 3D Secure certified vendors in Asia Pacific that has been compliant with the security requirements of six card brands – Visa, MasterCard, Amex, Discover/Diners, JCB, and CUP – for issuing and acquiring processing some dated back in 2003, not only the existing version 1.0 but also 2.0. We are also one of the very few certified vendors that support the latest card tokenization standards of Visa (VTS) and MasterCard (MDES, or Mastercard Digital Enablement Service).

“In the area of risk control and monitoring, we offer our advanced anti-fraud processing and reporting tools to merchants as part of our payment services at no extra cost. These services have been and are being used every day by thousands of all our MNCs, Corporate, SME and merchant clients from 11 countries in Asia Pacific since 2005.”

The global pandemic has certainly had a negative impact on economies around the world, but it has also prompted the acceleration towards a cashless future. Joseph has witnessed a number of trends that support this. “At AsiaPay, we are seeing that the embedded payment experience is likely to become more popular, and even the norm,” he observed. “The utilization of tokenised payments and digital wallets are more encouraging than ever, while cash usage is declining rapidly, and there are continuously new use cases on blockchain and cryptocurrencies. Consumers and businesses are likely to be drawn to payment experiences that offer more control than friction; payment providers are launching initiatives to preserve economic liquidity.”

Alternate payments

Joseph described the aggressive business competition in markets across the Asia Pacific region as “fierce.” In response, AsiaPay’s most powerful tool for helping businesses to remain competitive is innovation. “At AsiaPay, we continue to innovate by offering new payment solutions for business, while adopting industry-leading technologies in digital payment products and services for each local market to keep us stay ahead of our competitors. “We are also more advanced due to our feature expandability, with over 40 readily available plug-ins for integration with our eCommerce partners, over 30 value-added service features, and our easy one-stop digital integration makes us more comprehensive.”

Joseph emphasized the importance of offering different payment options for merchants “The advanced multi-channel payment gateway system would be an important tool for merchants who expect to boost the chance of payment success from regional and global customers. Payment gateways empower merchants to offer customers with their desired payment options to ensure sales success.

Choosing the right multi-channel payment platform that seamlessly manages payments under a single platform is an intelligent approach that focuses resources to remain where they can be most effective – on your core business.”

Security and Authentication

AsiaPay offers advanced Digital Payment Gateway and 3-D secure 2.0 to Banking industry. The solution includes the most advanced, certified, and proven digital payment system, supporting multi-channel, multi-currency, multiple payment methods, value-added services, embedded with the latest 3-D Secure 2.0 cardholder authentication technology. Besides we strive to offer better quality payment service by providing 24/7 local technical support.”

In March this year, AsiaPay Technology announced a white-labeled 2.0 version of its 3D secure solution, Xecure3D. Wanda asked Joseph to provide more details. “The Xecure3D solution, including 3DS SDK, 3DS Server (3DSS), Access Control Server (ACS), and Cardholder Management System (CMS), is fully compliant with the standard requirements of EMVCo, the worldwide card network, and the Payment Card Industry (PCI) 3DS Core Security Standard,” he said. “ACS readily supports Visa, MasterCard, and UnionPay International, while 3DSS has already supported Visa, MasterCard, UnionPay International, and American Express, and will soon cover Discover and JCB.

“Blended with the EMV 3D Secure 2.0 technology, the Xecure3D solution largely increases protection for cardholders on transacting credit card payments,” he continued. “The built-in frictionless flow with risk-based authentication – which uses different means including token-based, OTP, and biometric – allows issuers to approve transactions with minimum interaction with cardholders in return for a smooth and effortless digital checkout journey. The 3DS SDK comes with both the Android and iPhone versions to seamlessly support the 3DS requestor feature on mobile payment applications.

“The white-labeled solution can be offered and deployed in various models for banks and merchants. The easy-to-deploy hosted solution service model can allow deployment in a short timeframe without any hardware or infrastructure setup, hassle-free. The licensed solution model can be easily customized and deployed to the issuer’s system environment.”

Omni-channel

AsiaPay’s approach to staying competitive in a highly volatile and fast-growing market is to constantly catch up with the market trends to develop, expand and improve its product offerings. “We plan to expand and focus more on new payment use cases and distribution channels, including chatbot checkout, smart retail, web 3.0…etc,” Joseph said. “We will implement more sales and promotional activities on social media and webinars and launch the smart retail payment solution “PayDollar AppPay”. Alternate Payment Methods will be supported, such as buy-now-pay-later, and we will continue to expand the wallet acceptance like GrabPay, LinePay, ShopeePay, SamsungPay…etc in the region for digital purchases. Mobile payment will be accepted via in-app SDK and comprehensive data analytical tools will be available for digital merchants via the real-time payment dashboard.”

Data analysis

Data is a very important core part of our business and industry, especially in relation to:

For part of business value, Sales and service enhancement – With more variety of payment data today, it allows us and our clients to gain far more business insights and better understand consumer behaviour and how to more effective reach and serve them, e.g., what the customer prefers to use to pay for, such as online/mobile, browsers, languages, time, and optimize sales reach and sales conversion, and better implement their sales and marketing strategies.

Productivity savings – we can make available to banks and merchants of various real-time reporting and MIS tools in single platform across payments in 11 market to ease settlement reconciliation, refund handling, fraud monitoring especially payment management across countries, banks, payment methods, channels…etc.

Enhanced sales conversion with frictionless payment – with more data collected during payment process, it allows us to offer the latest 3D Secure 2.0 standard to help card issuers to authenticate the cardholders more effectively without the need to mandate OTP, hence shorten payment time and minimize payment dropout.

Web 3.0 Strategy

As a leading digital payment solution, and technology provider in the Asia Pacific, AsiaPay works closely with our partners in the metaverse, crypto and NFT related businesses. With capabilities of the web3 payment, we aim to strengthen the sales scene, use virtual social space as attraction, product display and sales as a reality, enhance the interest and purchase intention of potential buyers, coupled with cryptocurrency-led payment.

Another announcement from the AsiaPay camp earlier this year brought word of a new partnership in the field of token-based economics. “Moonland Metaverse, a world for NFT collectors and meta businesses, enables merchants to enhance their user experience by plugging their business into the metaverse and tapping into digital-first users to increase their brand image and sales channels,” Joseph said. “AsiaPay is helping its various merchants to embrace the new experience of selling, socializing, and making money while playing in the post-Instagram era.”

Buy Now Pay Later

The payments space was incredibly robust across the Asia Pacific region in the first half of 2021, and the BNPL space was found to be one of the fastest-growing subsectors. “The pandemic has not only adversely affected businesses but also consumers’ disposable income. As a result, with the rising demand for consumer financing and the growth in eCommerce sales, BNPL services have emerged as a major new payment method and short-term credit facility for consumers,” Joseph explained. “At AsiaPay, we are partnering with BNPL providers in Asia Pacific such as Atome, Zip, Pace, PayPal, Kredivo, Hoola, Indodana, and PayLater by Grab, to increase the potential of BNPL service adoption and gain access to a wide range of merchants currently using our digital payment solutions.”

Corporate Social Responsibility

Corporate social responsibility is treated as a priority at AsiaPay. Joseph discussed how part of the organization’s vision involves providing entities with the latest digital payment values that readily maximize business efficiency, productivity, and global opportunities. “We are committed to helping society in the conversion of the traditional payment to online, cashless, and paperless payment to reduce the carbon footprint,” he told Wanda. “Along with delivering services to our clients and shaping a sustainable future for the communities we serve; we also ensure that all our stakeholders are given the proper attention on the long-term value of the environmental matters.

“One of our focus is the green operations, as the environment has a direct impact on the health and well-being of our customers, our employees, and our communities. It is critically important that we understand the effects of our own impact, and where possible, influence positive environmental practices amongst our stakeholders and within our markets. AsiaPay focuses on responsibly managing and reducing its environmental impact.”

Another priority is the social innovation, and Joseph highlighted some ways in which AsiaPay has been giving back to local communities. “Through the Library Project, we donate books and stationery to poor students and have been helping to improve child literacy in rural areas of China since 2017. In addition, the AsiaPay team in Malaysia, the Philippines, and Indonesia continuously donate to elementary schools and non-profits organisation from time to time.

“Brigada Eskwela” (‘School Brigade’) is a project of the Philippine government’s Department of Education, in partnership with Vicente P. Villanueva Memorial School and Alumni Batch 1991 for the Repair-Paint-Clean Programme. It was such an honor to help the next generation by improving the education and welfare of the youth.

“Furthermore, through our partnership with Youth of Differences (YoD), organized by Rotary District 3450, we have strengthened hope and created opportunities for people with developmental disabilities to engage with the fullness of community life, providing workplace experience aligning with the focus of WTIA (Wireless Technology Industry Association).”

Another key component of AsiaPay’s commitment to social responsibility is environmental sustainability, and Joseph shared how the organization focuses on responsibly managing and reducing its environmental impact. “We adopted the environmental ‘Green Office’ with the slogan ‘Go Green at Work: Reduce, Reuse, Replace and Recycle’ to generate less pollution and waste.”

He also praised AsiaPay’s strong employee-centric culture, which he described as being “reinforced by the core values of collaboration, inclusion, innovation, and wellness.”

A Glimpse of Future

Looking to the near future, he predicted 2022 to continue to be an exciting year for AsiaPay, as new technology and competition from fintech have rapidly disrupted the financial services industry, particularly regarding cards and payments. “Payments are increasingly ubiquitous, embedded, standardized, and secure, reducing friction in processing and ultimately transforming the customer experience,” he reported. “Besides, the payment world is rapidly advancing technologically and globally, giving rise to many future payment possibilities for users and, similarly, allowing merchants to attract and connect with others around the world.

“We will continue to expand our footprint in the market to develop our product’s new payment solution and service coverage. We look forward to adding value and empowering businesses and financial institutions to keep pace with the technology and market disruption by offering a comprehensive suite of payment solutions across channels, markets, devices, and technologies.

“Currently, we’ve experienced good growth in markets like Hong Kong, the Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand. Among our new markets, Indonesia, Malaysia and Taiwan have been picking up fast in the past year. Beyond those, Australia, China, and India are just some of the countries where we are expecting to see continuous growth in the coming years.”

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