OP Financial Group’s Pivo Wallet Oy and Nets are joining forces to pilot mobile payments in Finland. The two companies have signed a letter of intent to make Pivo available for Finnish Nets merchants, both in-store and online. Pivo users will also have access to a new e-receipt functionality within the app.
Following the agreement between Nets and Pivo Wallet Oy, Pivo payments will be available soon at selected bricks-and-mortar shops that use Nets terminals and in online stores at a later date. Today, Pivo is the preferred mobile wallet in Finland. It can be used online, as well as in-store on Android phones. Through the partnership with Nets, in-store payments will be available for all handsets, including Apple devices, using next-generation mobile acceptance technology.
The convenience of contactless payments, regardless of device
Mobile payments in-store are rapidly increasing across the Nordic countries.
In Denmark, Nets has already introduced a new acceptance standard for mobile payments using Bluetooth technology. By bringing this standard to Finland, consumers will be able to pay with Pivo on all mobile devices, just by tapping a device on the terminal.
“Paying with your mobile leverages the contactless ‘tap and go’ payment experience that many Finns have already adopted and enjoy while shopping. To ensure the same level of ease when paying in-store with your mobile, we will implement a new payment standard using Bluetooth that will give the same payment experience regardless of handset, which will be very similar to when you make contactless payments with cards”, says Sirpa Nordlund, Country Manager for Nets in Finland.
New benefits will help drive mobile payments in-store
The in-store solution that Pivo and Nets will pilot builds on the familiar contactless card user experience and further enhances it by enabling consumers to tap and confirm payments on their phones. Technology from Nets subsidiary Storebox takes the experience even further by bringing e-receipts to Pivo. The user will have the receipt available on their phone instantly, once the payment is concluded.
“Through our collaboration with Nets and Storebox, we are able to provide a more seamless in-store payment experience for all mobile devices with integrated value-adding features such as e-receipts in Pivo. The enhanced shopping experience we are providing together for our customers will be key for mobile payments to take off in e-commerce and physical stores,” says Masa Peura, Director, New Businesses at OP.
Pivo aims to cover all consumer payment needs for all payment situations, whether it is transferring funds from person to person, or shopping in stores or online. The next phase of the partnership aims to make the online experience for consumers as easy and smooth, enabled by the Pivo application using Netaxept – a service from Nets.
Pandemic ‘shecession’ reverses women’s workplace gains
By Anuradha Nagaraj
(Thomson Reuters Foundation) – The coronavirus pandemic reversed women’s workplace gains in many of the world’s wealthiest countries as the burden of childcare rose and female-dominated sectors shed jobs, according to research released on Tuesday.
Women were more likely than men to lose their jobs in 17 of the 24 rich countries where unemployment rose last year, according to the latest annual PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) Women in Work Index.
Jobs in female-dominated sectors like marketing and communications were more likely to be lost than roles in finance, which are more likely to be held by men, said the report, calling the slowdown a “shecession”.
Meanwhile, women were spending on average 7.7 more hours a week than men on unpaid childcare, a “second shift” that is nearly the equivalent of a full-time job and risks forcing some out of paid work altogether, it found.
“Although jobs will return when economies bounce back, they will not necessarily be the same jobs,” said Larice Stielow, senior economist at PwC.
“If we don’t have policies in place to directly address the unequal burden of care, and to enable more women to enter jobs in growing sectors of the economy, women will return to fewer hours, lower-skilled, and lower paid jobs.”
The report, which looked at 33 countries in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) club of rich nations, said progress towards gender equality at work would not begin to recover until 2022.
Even then, the pace of progress would need to double if rich countries were to make up the losses by 2030, it said, calling on governments and businesses to improve access to growth sectors such as artificial intelligence and renewable energy.
Laura Hinton, chief people officer at PwC, said it was “paramount that gender pay gap reporting is prioritised, with targeted action plans put in place as businesses focus on building back better and fairer”.
Britain has required employers with more than 250 staff to submit gender pay gap figures every year since 2017 in a bid to reduce pay disparities, but last year it suspended the requirement due to the coronavirus pandemic.
(Reporting by Anuradha Nagaraj @AnuraNagaraj; Editing by Claire Cozens. Please credit the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, that covers the lives of people around the world who struggle to live freely or fairly. Visit http://news.trust.org)
German January exports to UK fell 30% year-on-year as Brexit hit – Stats Office
BERLIN (Reuters) – German exports to the United Kingdom fell by 30% year-on-year in January “due to Brexit effects”, preliminary trade figures released by the Federal Statistics Office on Tuesday showed.
In 2020, German exports to the UK fell by 15.5% compared to 2019, recording the biggest year-on-year decline since the financial and economic crisis in 2009, when they fell by 17.0%, the Office said.
“Since 2016 – the year of the Brexit referendum – German exports to the UK have steadily declined,” the Office said in a statement.
In 2015 German exports to the UK amounted to 89.0 billion euros. In 2020, German they totalled 66.9 billion euros.
Imports to Germany from the UK totalled 34.7 billion euros in 2020, down 9.6 % compared to 2019.
(Reporting by Paul Carrel; Editing by Madeline Chambers)
German unemployment unexpectedly rises in February
BERLIN (Reuters) – German unemployment rose in February for the first time since last June, data showed on Tuesday, dashing expectations for a fall as lockdown measures to suppress the coronavirus case load held back Europe’s largest economy.
The Labour Office said the number of people out of work rose by 9,000 in seasonally adjusted terms to 2.752 million. A Reuters poll had forecast a fall of 13,000.
“Kurzarbeit (shortened working hours) continues to secure employment on a large scale and prevent unemployment,” Labour Office chief Detlef Scheele said in a statement, adding: “Individual sectors are feeling the effects of the lockdown.”
Germany has been in lockdown since November, and measures were tightened in mid-December, as it battles a second wave of the virus. Chancellor Angela Merkel has said new variants of COVID-19 risk a third wave of infections.
The unemployment rate remained unchanged compared with the previous month at 6.0%.
The labour agency said some 2.39 million employees were on shortened working hours in December under the government’s Kurzarbeit scheme designed to avoid mass layoffs during downturns by offering companies subsidies to keep workers on the payroll.
After peaking at some 6 million last April, the number of people on Kurzarbeit fell before rising again in November as lockdown measures kicked in, the Office said.
(Writing by Paul Carrel; Editing by Madeline Chambers)
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