George Aristidou, Deputy CEO – Lamda Group

When looking at Ecommerce and the payment industry in general, there are many sides. Payment processing, payment service providers, mobile

When looking at Ecommerce and the payment industry in general, there are many sides.

Payment processing, payment service providers, mobile processing, prepaid cards, and affiliate programs just to name a few. One firm capable of offering collective services such as these is Lamda Group.

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Lamda offers processing, affiliate programs , mobile payments, and prepaid card services through Lamda Card Services. We were fortunate enough to interview Lamda’s Deputy CEO George Aristidou to discuss Lamda’s large array of services and the payment industry industry as a whole.

 

Payment Magnates: Lamda Group offers a number of services. Could you expand on what Lamda does and how it got started? 

George Aristidou: Lamda Group was established in 2007 as an international payment service company that specializes in the processing of internet based payments and card services. Lamda offers innovative, secure and reliable solutions to the international market, assisting the development of the e-payment field, which is considered particularly important for the development of Ecommerce. Even though Lamda is a continuously evolving company, it has a smooth and efficient structure, with the flexibility to react to individual customer needs, therefore it can be strongly said that Lamda prides itself in providing custom built solutions. Our services are accessible through a state of the art international network system, which is fully secured, as the company has achieved PCI DSS  Level 1 certification, which is the highest that can be achieved in the industry. PCI covers 12 major categories of information security, including network design, data storage, intrusion monitoring and the use of security-aware IT policies. Our compliance meets and exceeds these industry standards as an integral part of our commitment to end-to-end security.

 

PM: Lamda Card Services offers prepaid debit cards. What differentiates your offering from others like Payoneer, InterCash, Google Wallet card or PayPal’s reloadable MasterCard? 

GA: Lamda Card Services is authorized to distribute prepaid MasterCard cards which can be used globally. The card accounts are accessible by the users via the internet in a completely secure and user friendly environment. With Lamda Card Services, confidential and financial information cannot be revealed. This not only keeps the information safe, but also protects our client’s privacy when carrying out transactions online.

Lamda Card Services provides an easy and safe money management through a Prepaid Virtual MasterCard® as well as a Prepaid Prefunded MasterCard® (Gift Card).

Our offers in terms of cards varies and are designed to meet anybody’s requirements, here are some examples:

The LAMDA Prepaid Virtual card is designed specifically for internet use. It can instantly be used anywhere online where MasterCard is accepted. LAMDA Card Services issues a 16 digit card number as well as an expiry date and a CVC code in real time.

The Silver LAMDA Prepaid Debit MasterCard ensures a safe and secure spending tool for travelers and students. The funding limit is 2,500 euros annually. The Silver cards can be co-branded and personalized.

The Black LAMDA Prepaid Debit MasterCard is the card with the highest deposit limit worldwide in the prepaid cards sector.  A flexible tool to control spending both for individuals and businesses without the risk of overdrafts. It is a world-class card that can be co-branded and personalized for your business.

The LAMDA Gift Card is the ideal product for individual and company gifts. LAMDA Gift Cards are issued anonymously and are available in several prepaid amounts- €50, €75, €100, €150, €200 and €250. They too can be co-branded and personalized.

PM: What currencies and regions does the Lamda prepaid card support? And for which industries?

GA: Lamda has a very large global database of merchants and clients from all acceptable industries across a large spectrum. As for currencies, for the time being, LAMDA supports only EUR, but we are in the process of implementing also USD on our cards and they will be available very soon.

 

PM: We saw on your website LamdaGroup.com that Lamda is about to offer 2 new services, an E-Wallet and a payment service. Could you expand on those new services?

GA: The International Ecommerce and mail-order business is growing at a rapid pace.

Lamda Processing provides intelligent risk management services as well as secure payment options with guaranteed payments. We provide the best possible payment processes for international and local requirements with the ability to create low transaction fees and high acceptance.

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We at LAMDA understand all of our client’s needs because we process online payments for more than 10,000 business owners every day. We offer a 24/7/365 customer support team who is experienced and will respond to your customers’ inquiries efficiently and professionally.

LAMDA is fully compliant with the latest payment card  industry data requirements and has the highest security standards in the industry.

No industry is off limits and Lamda’s vast network of clients include regulated financial institutions, financial services companies, marketing organizations, mobile phone operators, retail chains, small to large corporations, government institutions, airlines, and travel organizations.

The E-Wallet is considered the fastest, easiest and safest alternative method of payment for online transactions. It can be used to purchase physical goods online or offline via a smartphone within a store. E-wallets makes online shopping faster and easier, without the tedious process of filling in online forms. This is an important advantage for those who do business online, since customers often avoid making online purchases due to the difficulty and fear of completing the process. The strict security standards that are governing the system, in conjunction with the fact that the user can load only the money that they want to spend onto the E-Wallet making it not only manageable but also highly secure.

 

PM: With mobile payments reaching all-time highs throughout 2013, what does Lamda have to offer when it comes to mobile payments?

GA: A cross-platform, multi-channel mobile payment solution, the Lamda Processing Payment Widget is used by consumers to pay for digital goods over mobile devices. The widget is integrated into websites or smartphone apps and presents the most convenient mobile payment solution for merchants who don’t want to get involved in payment API integration.

  • Adjust the screen layout and overall user experience – end users can complete an online payment with a single tap on their mobile device.
  • Custom look and feel – set the widget’s look and feel to complement your brand identity with just a few simple clicks in the Partner Panel.
  • Enable mWallets as a payment option – depending on merchant needs, end users can choose their own mobile payment method.

 

PM: With 2014 just starting, what are your predictions on the payment industry throughout the coming year?

GA: Just like 2013, 2014 will be an exciting year for payments. We will see a continuation of the rapid transformation that has been common in the past few years.

You’ll see more EMV chip cards. Issuers are gradually rolling out new cards with EMV chip technology, which is used around the world and is designed to cut down on fraud.

Alternative payments for domestic Ecommerce is expected to grow by 13-15% by 2015, while the growth in cross-border Ecommerce means credit card usage will increase throughout the card-not-present space. With almost half of all online shoppers looking for goods abroad, easy payment solutions are the key to changing payment habits and encouraging alternative payments acceptance. So there will be a lot of opportunities for IPSPs (Internet Payment System Providers)  and other players in the payments industry to leverage on.

2014 is the year that mobile offers linked to payment cards will become mainstream. In 2014, mobile applications will dramatically modernize the consumer experience around payments.
Advertisers will target the smartphones. One of the biggest smartphone trends for 2014,will be the increased use of geolocation technology to spot when you are in or near a store and send you a promotion based on your location.

 

PM: What are your thoughts on digital-currencies like Bitcoin? Do you see Lamda supporting digital currencies in the future?

GA: Regarding Bitcoin digital currency, the opinions are divided. While some are saying the prediction is that acceptance of the digital currency collapses this year, Bitcoin’s true believers aren’t treating its latest gyrations as a cause for panic. An increasing number of small businesses hurried to accept Bitcoin, in part because it requires far lower transactions fees than credit or debit payments.

2014 may not see the end of Bitcoin, but it will certainly see the end of Bitcoin as we know it.

 

PM: For merchants looking into expanding and entering new markets, what sort of advice would you give them?  

GA: The importance of multichannel selling. As customer shopping behaviors become more fragmented, so must the presence of small online businesses owners. Simply having an e-commerce site is no longer enough. Small and medium-size businesses (SMBs) should begin looking for efficient ways to expand their presence.
In 2014, we will see consumers shifting loyalty to merchants that focus on delivering the most engaging, rich and useful customer experience. If retailers want to stay competitive, they will need to focus on making it as easy as possible for customers to find – and pay for – exactly what they want.  Small businesses should have a mobile version of their website, with mobile-optimized checkout to help facilitate a better mobile experience. Small retailers should also look at their site across multiple mobile devices and pay attention to new technologies.

In an effort to provide a better experience, convert more sales and build loyalty, more and more merchants are releasing personalization applications that aren’t just focused on commerce, but make the entire shopping and purchase process more seamless for their customers.

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