By Riley Kaminer
On the surface, credit cards may seem like a straightforward solution. You purchase something, handover your piece of plastic (or metal) or type in a string of digits, and voila – you’re now the new owner of that good.
The reality, however, is not so straightforward. One major concern for consumers is privacy. Credit card companies track shoppers and analyze your transactions for profit. For merchants, chargebacks – when credit card companies require retailers to make good the loss of a disputed transaction – can be costly. Globally, chargebacks cost merchants upwards of $100 billion per year, by some estimates.
For some businesses that are active in highly-regulated industries or industries with a lot of fraud (e.g., crypto and cannabis), there is also a risk that they will have issues receiving a payment. And while credit cards have made major strides in thwarting fraud, it is still a significant issue that severely impacts a third of small businesses.
Miami-based Global Primex is on a mission to mitigate some of these issues. The privacy-first payments company specializes in innovative digital payment solutions. In July, Global Primex launched its latest initiative for secure payments: a new product, VLoad.
The idea is that consumers use their normal credit card – or make an ACH payment, or use Bitcoin – to purchase a VLoad digital card. The consumer can then use this online-only prepaid card to shop safely at any participating merchant.
David Wilford, Global Primex’s Chief Legal and Compliance Officer, told Refresh Miami that the company reduces the friction inherent to certain payments by undertaking due diligence before onboarding new merchants. “When you go to one of these companies that are in our network, we already know that they’re authorized, we know that they’re not fraudulent, we know that they’re not suspicious, and that transaction gets approved,” he said.
“We’ve also done our due diligence on you and so we know that you’re not a bot or that you’re not a fraudster or something similar,” Wilford continued. “So you and the merchant both have guaranteed acceptance.”
Global Primex is currently working to develop their network of merchants. They are initially focusing on gaming platforms and have inked a deal with a company that gives the company access to 15 operators right off the bat.
In 2019, Global Primex entered the US market. It has over 200 employees worldwide, with major clusters in Poland, Mauritius, and Georgia. Around 20 of its employees are based in South Florida.
“Global Primex was founded on the premise of creating anti-fraud solutions for online merchants suffering from excessive chargebacks and low acceptance rates, and for providing consumers with a best-in-class private and secure online payment method,” CEO Marek Sala commented in a statement.
“With VLoad, merchants are protected under Global Primex’s PCI DSS Level 1 certified payments platform, benefitting from early fraud detection and dispute resolution, while customers’ identities and data are kept private from third parties,” said Sala. “VLoad brings tremendous value in industries such as online gaming where we can bring consumers and merchants together in an environment where the risk of fraud on either side of a transaction is significantly diminished.”
Wilford, a lawyer by trade who has been with the company for two and a half years, is bullish on the Miami fintech space – even in the face of the so-called crypto winter. “I think Miami is poised to ride that out,” he said. “Crypto has a lot of promise.”
“That’s what innovation is all about. You give people a chance to come up with new things. A lot of them are bound to fail. But in the process, new businesses, new industries, and new wealth are generated.”
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