The smoke of customer acquisition in the payment industry has never dissipated.

  In the field of bank card acquiring business, under the mechanism of layer-by-layer outsourcing and profit sharing, activating more POS machines and generating higher transaction flow has become the goal of payment institutions and service providers (agents).

  Go to merchants, find more merchants, "it's better to snatch merchants from other acquirers"... The front-line salesmen who are running in the POS promotion are gearing up, and the acquirers pay for license renewals, fines, and rates Adjustments will become their opportunities.

  If none of these are available, someone will take the initiative to create opportunities.

Recently, a news about the rate increase of Fu Linmen Payment Co., Ltd. (hereinafter referred to as "Fu Linmen") has spread in the acquiring industry, and some service providers have begun to move around, inviting merchants to replace POS machines with lower rates.

  On the official website of Fu Linmen, the prompt of "refusing to replace the machine" is particularly eye-catching. The above-mentioned rumors of price increases also quickly responded to them as false news, and pointed the source of the rumors to malicious competition in the same industry.

Who is disrupting the "merchant defense battle" in the acquiring industry?

Payment institutions are "increased in price"

  "Another payment institution can't stand it anymore, and the rate is directly adjusted to 100+3." A POS machine personal agent expressed such emotion in the circle of friends.

The picture of the relevant circle of friends is an "emergency notice" suspected to be issued by Fu Linmen.

  The picture information shows that many payment companies are facing huge fines of more than 500 million yuan due to UnionPay's recovery of preferential merchants (code hopping).

The top-ranked payment companies with a large transaction volume of fines this time will actively reduce transaction volume by raising prices and increasing rates.

Fu Linmen decided to make a comprehensive price increase adjustment for its MPOS, Yunxiaobao, Yunshangbao and other main products. The machine and tools that were activated before August 1st will be adjusted to 100+3 on August 3rd.

  On some public social platforms, the news of the adjustment of payment rates has also sparked discussions between merchants and promotion service providers.

While merchants are worried about rising costs, service providers are more concerned about whether the profit sharing can be settled smoothly.

In the discussion, some service providers invited customers to replace the POS machine, and some users pointed out that "it's just a means of cutting the machine, and it can be used normally".

  Zhang Wei (pseudonym), a personal agent who has been engaged in the promotion of POS machines for many years, told a reporter from Beijing Business Daily that the so-called "100+3" usually means that the credit card rate is 1%, and an additional service fee of 3 yuan is charged.

A single transaction with a credit card of 10,000 yuan will result in a total transaction fee of 103 yuan.

  In Zhang Wei's view, the industry's news about the increase in payment rates is more like nonsense. The current reference rate for standard merchant credit cards for payment is 0.6%, and the reference rate for WeChat and Alipay barcode payment is 0.35%.

The rate adjustment is too large, which is difficult for merchants to accept, and the profit distribution of service providers may also change, which is not a good thing for business operations.

  In response to this rumor, many acquiring and payment institutions in the industry have responded that they have not received relevant news notifications about the fines, and the company currently has no plans to adjust the rates of acquiring products.

  As a party, Fu Linmen pointed out that the above-mentioned "notice" was not officially issued by the company, but fabricated the content in the name of Fu Linmen.

So far, there has been no price increase for the company's products.

At present, the company has communicated the details of the incident with legal aid agencies and the public security department, and has entered into the traceability verification process. For the institutions involved who are suspected of defaming the company and thus causing major damage to the company's reputation, the company will reserve the final right to pursue its legal responsibility.

The spear is directed at disorderly competition

  The competition between payment institutions is naturally also the competition of individual agents.

Zhang Wei said that there are many payment institutions in the market, and agents are everywhere.

In order to obtain commission income, it is necessary to ensure that a stable transaction flow can be generated through the POS machine activated by oneself, and to continuously expand new users.

  Wang Lei (pseudonym), a practitioner in the payment industry, told the Beijing Business Daily reporter that from the actual development of the payment company where she works, when online merchants choose the POS machine of a payment institution, on the one hand, they pay attention to the security of funds and service level, and on the other hand Pay attention to credit card rates.

"The former can basically be guaranteed by the current regular acquirers. If you want to get customers, you can only start from the rate."

  Zhang Wei said: "For some merchants who have already used the POS machines of other institutions, how to convince them to use the POS machine brand I represent is a key point. Zooming in to the entire industry, if a payment institution If the rate increases, the merchants under this brand are likely to be 'poached' directly."

  This type of change of merchants from one payment institution to another is known in the industry as "cutting the machine."

Judging from the trend of the acquiring industry in the past, even if the original payment institutions operate normally, common phrases such as "rate adjustment", "product deactivation", and "free replacement of new POS machines" also appear from time to time. Many payment institutions have A statement to refute the rumor was issued.

  Among the turbulent rumors, many institutions and agents are aiming at the source of peer competition.

Fu Linmen replied that the preliminary judgment does not rule out the possibility that the false notification is a vicious competition in the same industry.

  Another business person in charge of a payment institution bluntly stated that this kind of machine cutting phenomenon is relatively common in the industry. issued a statement on this.

Most payment companies will remind merchants not to be deceived by means of official App push reminder messages or WeChat public account announcements.

  According to Wang Pengbo, a senior analyst in the financial industry analyzed by Broadcom, the competition in the acquiring market is becoming more and more fierce. There may be two possibilities for this fake news to spread.

One is that agents rubbing against hot spots and conduct hunger marketing; the other is that agents of various payment companies compete disorderly in the process of expanding merchants, so as to facilitate the promotion of their own machines, and even take the opportunity to raise the charging standards of the entire industry.

How much is the responsibility of the payment institution?

  For a long time, the outsourcing profit sharing mechanism has been adopted in the field of acquiring.

When a user uses a POS machine to pay by card, a different amount of handling fee will be incurred.

The sub-commissioner of the handling fee involves multiple parties such as the issuing bank, UnionPay, and the acquiring and payment institution.

  Wang Pengbo said that in the process of payment and receipt, outsourcing service providers are an indispensable and important part. Payment institutions cannot directly recruit a large number of employees to carry out work such as ground push, equipment layout and maintenance, and can only rely on service providers to expand their business and services. Businesses also gained a certain degree of autonomy.

  Judging from the actual situation in the past, many payment institutions and service providers have obvious loopholes in merchant qualification review when promoting POS machines to users. What's more, they even know that users are not real merchants, and they bluntly say "no problem".

  When a reporter from Beijing Business Daily asked some Fulinmen agents about the online notification situation, some agents invited reporters to use the Fulinmen POS machine, and introduced that after individual users are activated on the Internet, they can automatically match the merchants in their area, and they will not A card closure problem occurred.

  In response to this situation, a reporter from Beijing Business Daily also asked Fu Linmen for verification.

In this regard, Fu Linmen only pointed out that for merchants' access to the network and activation, the company strictly reviews the necessary materials in accordance with the regulatory compliance access requirements, and implements real-name management and control.

For approved merchants, the company will establish a dynamic risk rating of merchants based on static indicators such as merchant qualifications and types, as well as subsequent transaction indicators of merchants, and conduct differentiated limit management and control and monitoring of various types of transaction-specific risk rules based on the rating results.

For service providers in violation of regulations, Fu Linmen takes various measures such as oral warnings, written warnings and rectification within a time limit, termination of cooperation, and transfer to administrative or judicial organs for handling according to the nature and severity of business violations.

  Pan Helin, co-director and researcher of the Digital Economy and Financial Innovation Research Center of Zhejiang University International Business School, believes that in the final activation of the POS machine, although it is the direct connection between the agent and the user, the payment institution also has to deal with it. Service providers at all levels carry out sufficient compliance constraints and continue to strengthen the compliance construction of agents.

The violations and malicious competition of service providers also indicate that the current payment institutions still have loopholes in the management of agents, and they should take responsibility for this.

  "Whether it is the default permission of the payment institution or the spontaneous action of the service provider, such behaviors that transfer the cost of violations to users and disrupt the development order of the industry are not desirable." Pan Helin emphasized.

Set up "entry thresholds" for service providers

  Since the first batch of third-party payment licenses were issued in 2011, the payment field has also undergone changes from disorderly competition to orderly supervision.

In the field of acquiring, many payment institutions rely on service providers to quickly expand their business, but they are also frequently complained by users and even received regulatory fines.

  Yu Baicheng, president of the Zero One Research Institute, pointed out that in the past two years, the payment industry has faced a regulatory environment with strict supervision, punishment of violations, and reduction of fees and profits.

The competition pressure of relevant institutions in the payment industry chain has intensified, and even the vicious competition of service providers has been exacerbated.

Therefore, acquirers need to set up certain "entry thresholds" when selecting cooperative service providers, and do a good job of compliance counseling and reward and punishment mechanisms to avoid outsourcers' irregular business development and further damage to the reputation of payment institutions.

  Wang Pengbo also emphasized that payment institutions should continue to do a good job in the management of service providers and strictly abide by the requirements of the central bank, including but not limited to not outsourcing core business.

  Beijing Business Daily reporter Liao Meng