New Solution Lets CUs Roll Out Mobile Offerings on Single Platform
Author: Jon Ungerland
Published in: CUtoday
AURORA, Colo.—It’s not always easy for credit unions to develop an end-to-end mobile payments strategy due to the market space’s evolution, with new players and solutions constantly emerging.
That often leads to CUs deploying P2P with one product, a mobile wallet with another, and even P2B with yet another vendor.
Seeking to help credit unions address this issue and roll out mobile solutions on a single platform, DaLand Solutions (www.dalandsolutions.com) has developed a mobile transaction platform called STI (Secured Transaction Image) that serves as the underlying technology for any number of mobile transaction types, the company said.
STI Solves Conundrum
STI is the answer to the mobile transaction strategy conundrum, according to Jon Ungerland, cofounder of DaLand.
“We wanted to build something cost effective and sustainable for our credit union clients, that is well thought out and highly secure,” he said. “We wanted a truly next-generation payments product that allows credit unions to have a very flexible, adaptable, and wide-ranging strategy around mobile transactions.”
That means with STI credit unions can roll out P2P, P2B and prepaid, for example, under the same platform, as well as other offerings, including
Blake Burrell, Wasatch Peaks
value-added services that connect with local merchants.
“With STI credit unions can partner with local merchants and retailers on incentive, coupon and rewards programs,” Ungerland said. “This would allow credit unions to function as a hub in a marketplace that is changing in terms of how people think about transactions and the devices they pull out of their pockets to make them. This keeps CUs ahead of the mobile payments curve with a solution that is scalable.”
Ungerland said DaLand did not rush to market with a mobile payments platform, instead taking time and partnering with CUs on development to deliver a long-term solution.
“STI is cost effective sustainable and adaptable,” said Ungerland. “We designed it to run off to the outside of the EFT rail. It directly integrates into the CU’s host system, which translates into a more cost-effective solution per transaction and per month, also providing real-time settlement capabilities.”
To make STI expandable, DaLand kept the architecture open, “in terms of future development but also in terms of having a full API so everyone can integrate to us and we can plug into whatever other applications credit unions are using,” Ungerland explained.
The platform is also very secure, Ungerland added.
“We put a lot of thought and time into designing a proprietary security mechanism,” he said. “Almost everyone else does some kind of processing out at the device level when they do mobile payments, and we wanted to make sure this platform was different—that it is highly centralized, highly secure and very dynamic.”
Michelle Thorne, American United
Two Utah CUs have soft-launched STI with staff, with a number of other credit unions in the final stages of implementation, Ungerland said.
“We are bringing STI out with P2P and P2B,” said Michelle Thorne, CEO of the $171-million American United FCU in West Jordan. “STI also gives us the ability to add many more transaction opportunities in the future so we can build a long-term payments strategy, keep the credit union highly efficient, and on pace with the payments changes that are coming.”
Building Local Partnerships
In Ogden, Blake Burrell, CEO of the $274-million Wasatch Peaks CU, said his CU is first using STI to work partnerships with local retailers.
“We have a good product we know will work. Now it’s a matter of getting our businesses in the area to work with it,” Burrell said.
Ungerland said DaLand was very careful in designing STI to allow CUs to meet consumers’ changing payments demands.
“This solution won’t be aged in a year or two,” he said. “We want credit unions to be able to follow consumers’ shifting payments expectations. For example, being able to bridge the gap between e-users and brick-and-mortar users, like we see fast-food chains and other retail outlets doing—letting people use their mobile devices to expedite and improve the experience before they walk into the business.”
Jon Ungerland | COO/Founder
Jon Ungerland believes the core philosophy underlying credit unions is the plausible and sustainable model for preserving healthy financial institutions and promoting financially dignified and strong communities in the 21st Century. Mr. Ungerland is committed to vigorously exploring philosophical principles and technological concepts surrounding the privileged position credit unions occupy as centralized, trusted, community financial institutions in an era of disruptive ‘innovation’ and rapid technological transformation. As an avid technologist he has worked to immerse himself in the technologies that impact credit unions and their members. Jon is an Ivy League intellect devoted to developing methodical, data-driven solutions to address any situation and has cultivated a team that specializes in journeying with credit unions to actualize their technological, operational, and strategic goals.