PIF India Announces New Chairman and Executive Committee

07 September 2012 – Prepaid International Forum (PIF) today announced the appointment of Navtej Singh, Head of Direct Payment Products at HDFC Bank as Chairman of the forum’s India Chapter with immediate effect. Mr Singh succeeds Kusal Roy, Head of Cards & Personal Loans at ICICI Bank whose annual term has come to an end.

The appointment coincides with the election of a new executive committee which is formed of bank and non-bank representatives to address the evolving needs of PIF India member organisations and the anticipated growth in the diversity of the forum’s membership in India. Under the leadership of Navtej Singh, the newly formed committee will collectively oversee the direction and scope of the forum’s working groups focused on the legal framework for prepaid in India and business value creation. The five new Office Bearers represent Axis Bank, ICICI Bank, ItzCash, State Bank of India and Visa.

Commenting on the appointments, Robert Courtneidge, Chairman and Co-Founder of the Prepaid International Forum said, “I am delighted to formally welcome Navtej Singh as Chapter Chair and the new Executive Committee members as Co-Chairs of the forum’s working groups. Mr Singh brings a wealth of industry experience to the role and has played an important role in the development of PIF India as a founding member. The new appointments will allow PIF India to benefit from a range of industry perspectives and will ensure that the interests of members are fully represented as the Chapter grows. PIF India is poised to play an increasingly important role in helping to stimulate the growth of prepaid in India. PIF looks forward to supporting Mr Singh and his forum colleagues in the year ahead”.

Navtej Singh is Head of Direct Payment Products at HDFC Bank, India’s leading private sector bank. Navtej has over 15 years of experience in Retail Branch Banking, Wealth Management, Sales, Product Management, Distribution Channels and Payment Products. Navtej has been closely associated with the Indian Payments industry for the last 5 years also working with the RBI and NPCI as a part of working groups and cards steering committees. He has also served as the Chairperson for the Legal and Regulatory Working Group of PIF India Chapter last year. 

Launched in August 2009 under the patronage of one of the world’s largest companies for payment solutions, TSYS®, PIF India is composed of members both in India and those with an interest in India who are committed to promoting the relevance and benefits of prepaid as a payment solution for consumers, governments and corporates. The PIF India membership represents bank and non-bank issuers of prepaid products, card schemes and suppliers of services to the prepaid industry in India.

Amit Sethi, Managing Director, India and South East-Asia Region, TSYS and Co-Chair of PIF India said, “PIF India has become established as an effective industry body liaising with regulators, government departments and the media to promote the responsible growth of the industry. It is my pleasure to welcome Navtej Singh as PIF India Chairman and our new Executive Committee members to take the forum to the next level”.

PIF Summit 2012: Latest Speakers Announced

Prepaid International Forum (PIF) is pleased to announce the latest list of confirmed speakers for the PIF Summit 2012 which will be held at South Lodge Hotel in West Sussex on 26-27 September 2012.

Now in its sixth year the PIF Summit will bring together prepaid industry experts and pioneers to share knowledge, ideas and standards for prepaid. Through a series of highly interactive sessions the event will provide members and delegates with an insight to:

  • The implementation of prepaid programmes in selected markets around the world;
  • Key factors affecting the growth and financial performance of certain prepaid programmes with references to what has been successful, and what has failed;
  • Emerging trends and opportunities in key markets including India and the Middle East, and
  • Key emerging legal and regulatory developments for the prepaid industry featuring the perspective of regulators and practitioners

Speakers and panellists include:

  • Robert Courtneidge, Global Head of Cards & Payments, Locke Lord LLP & Chairman, Prepaid International Forum (PIF)
  • Mike Smith, Director, Raphaels Bank
  • Brian Garcia, Payment Services, Banking and Credit Team, Financial Services Group, HM Treasury
  • Paul Anning, Partner, Osborne Clarke
  • Mark Beresford, Director, Edgar, Dunn & Company
  • Leon Ho, Executive Director, Senior Product Manager, Prepaid Commercial Cards, J.P. Morgan
  • Michael Mueller, CEO, paysafecard group
  • Y.Ramakrishna, Founder & CEO, Yalamanchili
  • Virginia Ann Holman, Group Executive, Global Corporate Marketing & Communications, TSYS
  • Yvonne West, General Manager, Prepaid International Forum (PIF)
  • Peter Howitt, Director, Ramparts
  • Craig James, CEO, Neopay
  • Denisa Jindrichova, Lawyer, Czech National Bank
  • Malek Mroueh, Senior Director, Regional Business Development, Middle East, Africa and Pakistan Region, TSYS International
  • Judith Rinearson, Partner, Bryan Cave LLP
  • Peter Sidenius, Director, Edgar, Dunn & Company

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Headline Sponsor:

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Welcome Drinks Reception Sponsor:

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Refreshment Break Sponsor:

 

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For full programme information and to register please contact:

Diane Brocklebank
Head of Member Relations
Prepaid International Forum (PIF)

Telephone Enquiries: +44 (0) 7736 971986

 

 

Locke Lord’s Robert Courtneidge in Top Two of International Prepaid Top 10

(LONDON) June 12, 2012 – Locke Lord's Global Head of Cards and Payments Robert Courtneidge, who recently was named Chairman of the Prepaid International Forum (PIF), has made the top of the list for the 2012 Prepaid Power 10, and international group of key contributors to and leaders in the prepaid industry. Courtneidge was named runner-up to first place by a global advisory board and an international prepaid audience of more than 20,000 industry leaders, who selected the Top 10 from a list of nominees from around the world.

Courtneidge joined Locke Lord’s London team in February and is noted for his knowledge and experience in the e-money area. His clients are among the biggest financial institutions in the world, as well as several significant Internet merchants and social media businesses. He is a longtime and key contributor to the evolution of cross-industry guidelines and codes of practice and has been active for many years in PIF, a not-for-profit international trade organization that provides an industry voice for the prepaid sector and that he co-founded in 2007.

In 2011, Courtneidge became the first lawyer ever recognized as “Best Industry Contributor” by The Prepaid Awards, and his strong network of contacts throughout the prepaid industry – including regulators and industry bodies – is unparalleled. He advises on a wide variety of card schemes, from general purpose network branded prepaid cards, incentive card programs and gift card solutions to payroll and commercial card schemes, and has used his deep knowledge of the area to help financial regulators in Eastern Europe, Asia and Africa shape emerging prepaid regulations. He works closely with The Payments Council, HM Treasury and the Financial Services Authority.

Locke Lord LLP consistently ranks among American Lawyer's top 100 U.S. law firms. The Firm’s full range of practice and industry areas serve national and international clients from offices in Atlanta, Austin, Chicago, Dallas, Hong Kong, Houston, London, Los Angeles, New Orleans, New York, Sacramento, San Francisco and Washington, D.C. It has an excellent reputation in complex litigation, regulatory and transactional work, with its 650-plus lawyers building collaborative relationships and crafting creative solutions – all designed and executed to meet clients’ long-term strategic goals.

Courtneidge can be reached at +44 (0) 20 7861 9019 or rcourtneidge@lockelord.com

 

 

BRC: Card Charging Ruling ‘Historic and Highly Significant’

A ruling that a decision outlawing charges levied on retailers by MasterCard should be upheld is being called ‘historic and highly significant’ by the British Retail Consortium (BRC).

In 2007 the charges imposed on UK retailers for the processing of credit and debit card payments from customers in other EU countries (so called cross-border transactions) were declared anti-competitive and unlawful by the European Commission.

MasterCard appealed. Now, today (Thursday) the European Court of Justice - the EU Court – has ruled that MasterCard has lost that appeal.

The BRC has led the fight against these ‘interchange fees’, arguing they are much higher than the actual costs that card firms incur in processing transactions and so are an unjustifiable tax on retailers and consumers.

In the UK, the Office of Fair trading (OFT) is investigating fees levied on domestic card transactions. The BRC says it should now take similar action.

British Retail Consortium Director General Stephen Robertson said: “I applaud the European Court for holding firm on its decision to end this unjustifiable tax on customers. This is a historic and highly significant decision on card charges for transactions between European nations but what comes next is crucial. And that should be fairer costs for customers and retailers whenever they pay by card.

“People deserve the same treatment on card charges when buying within the UK. Hundreds of millions of pounds are at stake. The Office of fair Trading should follow this landmark European ruling with rapid action here.”

Notes to editors

An interchange fee or Merchant Service Charge (MSC) is the fee a retailer is forced to pay to have each card payment it accepts processed. These cost retailers hundreds of millions of pounds each year. Some individual retailers pay tens of millions of pounds annually to card companies as a result of the fees.

Media Contacts

BRC Press Office 020 7854 8924/8920

Out of hours 07921 605544

PIF Research Reveals a Maturing UK Prepaid Market

PIF research has revealed that the frequency of spend on consumer loaded cards has nearly doubled and that year-on-year average load values have grown nearly three times. It also noted that Polymath Consulting analysis reveals the number of consumer loaded prepaid card programmes has grown significantly in the past four years, from just 50 in 2007 to 229 in 2011. The PIF Data Aggregation Service was launched in the UK in 2008 and data is collected from prepaid card programme managers (including banks) as well as BIN sponsoring banks. Data collected represents between 50 and 75 percent of the UK prepaid card market. In order to fully analyse industry developments the data is broken down into four categories; government/corporate loaded schemes; consumer purchased non-reloadable/gift schemes; FX/travel/currency cards and consumer loaded cards.

Other highlights of the Q4, 2011 research include:

  • In the area of consumer purchased non-reloadable cards the average spend per transaction increased by some 20% between Q3 and Q4
  • In looking at FX/travel currency cards, average spend per transaction had increased by around 50% in the previous year, but this fell somewhat in the third quarter and remained flat in Q4
  • Open loop government and corporate cards are used once every two to three weeks on average

 

Prepaid International Forum announces new Chairman and Board expansion

Prepaid International Forum (PIF) today announced that Robert Courtneidge, who will shortly join US law firm Locke Lord as Global Head of Cards & Payments, has been elected as Chairman of the forum and will join the Board of Directors.  It further announced the appointment of four new Directors – Craig James, CEO of Neopay Ltd, Judith Rinearson, a partner in Bryan Cave LLP’s New York offices, Peter Sidenius, Director, Edgar Dunn & Company and Paul Stanley, CEO at ReD.

Mr Courtneidge has been involved in the development of PIF since its establishment in June 2007, as Co-founder and the Chairman of PIF’s Legal and Regulatory Working Group.  He replaces Ken Howes, who had been Interim Chairman of PIF and has played a key role in driving the growth of the forum.

PIF is a not for profit global forum open to all parties participating on a commercial basis in the prepaid economy.  As well as providing an industry voice and enabling the cross-industry prepaid sector to communicate with national and international regulatory bodies, it provides research and thought leadership, a catalyst for the creation of international standards and a forum for members to consider and address evolving changes in the prepaid economy.  PIF has also facilitated the development of cross-industry guidelines and codes of practice.

In addition to the new appointees, current members of the PIF Board are Virginia Ann Holman, Group Executive, Global Corporate Marketing and Communications, TSYS, Michael Mueller, CEO of paysafecard group and Mike Smith, Director, Raphaels Bank.