Mobile payments are going mainstream this year if Heartland Payment Systems and LevelUp have anything to say about it. Heartland, one of the nation's largest payments processors, and LevelUp, the largest mobile payments and loyalty network in the country, are partnering on a national rollout of a mobile payment solution, said Chris Mahl, LevelUp's chief revenue and strategy officer.
"The biggest challenge facing mobile payment companies right now is scale," Mahl said. "LevelUp has been able to reach 1 million users and 5,000 merchants relatively quickly, but we need even wider consumer and merchant adoption before LevelUp hits the mainstream."
That's where Heartland comes in. It's more than 800-person sales force, customer base of more than 250,000 merchant locations, and widespread vertical industry expertise will accelerate the adoption of LevelUp's mobile payment and loyalty platform to merchants across the country, Mahl said.
"Our partnership with Heartland Payment Systems will allow us to fire up our growth rate as we begin a phased rollout with Heartland's impactful sales force selling LevelUp and our white-label solutions to businesses and consumers across the country," he said.
Ian Drysdale, Heartland's president, network solutions group, said that the companies have a shared goal to "Proactively expand market share while creating additional value at the point of sale for both merchants and consumers. The partnership provides consumers with another method of payment acceptance while merchants have the opportunity to further increase their bottom lines by meeting the payment demands of today's tech-savvy consumers."
The strategic relationship involves more than simply the nationwide rollout of LevelUp services, as LevelUp sees the power in Heartland's vertically integrated solutions, Mahl said. To benefit the partnership, LevelUp will leverage Heartland's scalable, multisite authorization and settlement network, currently capable of 3,000 transactions per second. When a MasterCard, Visa, American Express or Discover card "backs" a LevelUp transaction, Heartland's average response time will be less than one second.
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