Magazine article American Banker

First Data Joining Crowded Web-Pay Field

Magazine article American Banker

First Data Joining Crowded Web-Pay Field

Article excerpt

First Data Corp.'s decision to introduce a person-to-person Internet payment system through its Western Union subsidiary adds another big name to the increasingly competitive market. First Data, an Atlanta-based processing and payment service company, said its MoneyZap service will begin in July. Through Western Union, consumers will be able to send and receive money through e-mail. Bank One Corp. has its own person-to-person payment service, eMoneyMail, which it says has proven popular. Wells Fargo & Co. and FleetBoston Financial Corp. are working with partners to facilitate such payments. Among nonbanks, companies offering this service include Propay.com and X.com. Matt Golub, senior vice president of Internet commerce for First Data, said MoneyZap complements Western Union's other services, which let consumers wire money either by telephone or through Western Union offices. He said the new service is not meant to sap business from Western Union's other endeavors; rather, it is meant to appeal to clients who are more Internet-savvy than its typical customers. Western Union plans to reach these people by advertising and through alliances with banks and Internet companies -- such as ExciteatHome, which will use MoneyZap as its preferred person-to-person channel. "We are confident that we will find them," said Alan Silberstein, executive vice president at First Data, who oversees all Western Union activities. James Van Dyke, a senior analyst at Jupiter Communications, said Western Union seems to have "the right idea" with MoneyZap. …

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