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Paying the World with Payoneer

Payoneer: a leading light in the 'echnological golden age paradigm

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Payoneer: a leading light in the ‘echnological golden age paradigm

We are living at a time when technology is making what was once cumbersome and tangible, virtual and instant. This is not without its problems, of course. The ‘cloud computing revolution’ is still in its infancy and the planet’s reliance on all things Internet-based puts a huge onus on remote systems and their implementation – the recent Sony and Google hacking highlight the importance of ever greater online security and accountability. But, the few current incidents aside, it’s easy to sit for a moment and ruminate on how much better everything has gotten in the last decade due to the Internet and its multifarious functions: information gathering, socializing and, of course, business.

This ‘technological golden age’ we may be living through doesn’t start and end in the advanced western world either. I’ve been struck recently by how such a staid necessity as banking is being revolutionized and is, indeed, revolutionizing developing countries in Africa, South America and India. People in a rice field are now able to move money from their accounts, order supplies, organize delivery and pay suppliers, and all from a phone. The traditional banking model has been superseded by the ideas of a few pioneering technologists, and the outcome is only beginning to be felt.

One of the aforementioned leading lights in this new paradigm is a company called Payoneer. An elegantly simple idea turning the notion of queuing at a bank, dealing with lengthy, nightmarish call centers and writing checks (do people still do that?) even more redundant. Payoneer’s model is to provide pre-paid (and individually branded) MasterCard® card’s to customers who then give them to employees or affiliates which can ultimately be paid safely online – much like ‘topping up’ a transport or phone card. It’s that simple. The beauty is also that the reach of payment is, of course, global in scope. Anyone can pay or receive payment anywhere in the world, thus eliminating traditional banking (and its fees for transactions) altogether. What people like Richard Branson or Bob Diamond don’t realize when they’re trying to revitalize a lagging and reviled industry is that people don’t want a re-brand when it comes to banking. They want the process, like going to the dentist, to be fast and painless; the less visible, the better.

Payoneer is the brainchild of Yuval Tal, a twenty-year veteran in the business of online payment innovations. E-commerce has come quantum leaps in the last decade, moving along with the latest advances in technology and enabling new markets to flourish that were hitherto hampered by the sluggish requirements of the banking industry. Although, in the vitally important emerging markets of India and China, many people still don’t have bank accounts, so something like Payoneer enables a small business to move from the idea at its inception, to establishing a payment chain globally, with speed and reliability.

Yuval Tal began developing his e-commerce innovations over a decade ago with his former company, FiftyOne, one of the first companies to provide services that enabled American retailers to sell and market merchandise around the world in the customers’ local currency. After the success of FiftyOne, Tal established Payoneer and is now continuing to challenge the notion that moving currency has to be cumbersome and costly. And with the current climate of mistrust for the financial sector, it’s the perfect time to effectively control your own finances with the ease that Payoneer offers.

The benefits of the Payoneer model are also helping small businesses to use affiliates to strengthen their brand and generate more revenue. If an individual is able to connect with customers and works on a commission basis, his sales will be recognized by the parent company much faster, which will strengthen the overall brand. In this current climate, speed is essential for businesses to thrive in a marketplace that is increasingly reliant on online services. The term ‘global marketplace’ was essentially just an idea a decade again, without the means yet to become a reality. Now innovative business ideas like Payoneer are enabling that notion to become a reality for anyone, anywhere, with a business idea large or small, and access to the Internet. Safe, effective movement of currency will provide a new generation of global entrepreneurs the means to grow in ways that were unavailable even just a few short years ago. The business of business just became so much easier.[/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

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William R. Feins , freelance journalist from London, UK; he received his B.A. degree in Economics and his Masters in Sociology. William has always been interested in the mechanics of business and the inspiration of original thinkers, and firmly believes that the former can’t succeed without the latter. In his spare time, he enjoys the ridiculous spectacle of watching table tennis on a big screen (preferably at a pub) and reading weighty tomes about World War II.

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