Payments Startups Take The Data, Design And Development Route To Reengineer The Credit-Card Business


Editor’s note: Steve Patterson is a writer who has covered Boston and San Francisco Bay Area startups for 20 years. Follow him on Twitter @stevep2007.

Braintree, Square and fellow disruptors are applying web and mobile technologies to overhaul the economic model of the payment industry. In the next chapter of the Internet’s disintermediation of large markets, payments are shifting to be efficient and pervasive over-the-top (OTP) mobile services.

Understandably these companies are attracting a lot of money from top-tier VCs, as well as a lot of media attention. Visa has invested in Square and American Express has invested in Square competitor Izettle presumably to buy a ring-side seat to look through the “door to disruptive innovation at the bottom of the market,” which Clay Christensen describes in “The Innovator’s Dilemma.”

These startups enable online and brick-and-mortar merchants to use credit- and debit-card payments in ways that, until now…

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