13 June 2012

Consumers Choose Cashplus Card to Win Three Awards at Prepaid365 Awards 2012

The Cashplus Prepaid Card, offered by Advanced Payment Solutions (APS), has won ‘Best Payroll Prepaid Card’, ‘Best Unbanked Prepaid Card’, and ‘Best Basic Bank Account with Prepaid Card’ at the Prepaid365 Awards 2012.

There were over 340,000 consumer votes and 86 entrants for this year’s Awards. The votes show just how much APS is appreciated by the British public with particular popularity amongst the unbanked and under-served sectors. As one of the only payment awards that are judged in this way they are recognised as a very good indication of customer satisfaction. This is particularly important as widespread innovations are introduced in the payment market.

Amit Sharma, CEO and Senior Prepaid Consultant at Prepaid365, the UK’s Prepaid Card Portal, declared that; "It is certainly not a surprise to find the Cashplus card at the head of the table when it comes to consumer choices at the Prepaid365 Awards. The Cashplus Prepaid MasterCard® and the APS team have continued to win recognition across trade and consumer forums year on year and this recognition is well deserved. From innovations such as Creditbuilder to the new Debit Protect innovation, the Cashplus card team has consistently delivered value to consumers with features and functionality that bring actual tangible benefit. Their track record in helping the unbanked and under-served to gain electronic payments access and become financially included is second to none".

APS addresses consumer concerns around the lack of transparency with fees and penalties. ‘Free’ banking is now recognised as a myth, with more than 6.5 million consumers paying more than £100 in penalty fees each year for a ‘free’ account1. With APS there are no penalties; instead they provide a number of cost effective added extras to help customers better manage their money including:

  • The award-winning Creditbuilder product
  • Online banking 24/7
  • Short term loan products that can be used to cover emergency bills
  • The Cashplus Overdraft, which comes with a flat daily usage fee making it easy and transparent to calculate the charges of use

Richard Wagner, CEO of APS, explained; "We’re absolutely delighted that consumers are so impressed with our products. These Awards show that they recognise that our transparent fees work out much cheaper, for most people, than a ‘free’ bank account."

1Source: A New Approach to Banking, Social Finance Ltd, April 2011

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About Advanced Payment Solutions Ltd (APS)

With almost 600,000 cards issued and over £750,000,000 in payment turnover, APS is one of the world’s most innovative payment solutions companies and the most awarded prepaid card provider in Europe. The company’s flagship product, the award-winning Cashplus prepaid Gold MasterCard, is the UK’s first and best known general purpose prepaid card for consumers.

Small-to-medium sized businesses (SME) and government bodies alike are also now enjoying the benefits of APS’ flexible payment solutions, with nearly 3,000 companies and a range of local councils now using Cashplus cards to streamline their payments, manage expenses and take control of their day-to-day banking.

29 May 2012

Winner of ‘Best New Prepaid Product’ at Card and Payments Trailblazer Awards 2012

The Cashplus® Prepaid Card Account, offered by Advanced Payment Solutions (APS), has won ‘Best New Prepaid Product’ at the Card and Payments Trailblazer Awards 2012 in Barcelona where it was recognised by the judges as a ‘major innovation.’

The prestigious awards run by Cards and Payments Europe, in association with Cards International and Electronic Payments International, are for banks, retailers, vendors and technology providers from the whole of Europe. Cashplus beat competition from Citi, PayPal and Royal Sun Alliance.

The Judges are respected experts from across the payments industry and said of Cashplus; "APS has stepped prepaid up a gear with the Cashplus Card. The issuer became an agency bank in order to enable Direct Debit payments from the prepaid card. Judges considered this a major innovation."

APS introduced Cashplus to solve a number of payment issues including:

  • Consumers pay very high penalties when Direct Debits are refused by other banks. With Cashplus there are no penalties; instead there is help to ensure that there is money in the account when it’s needed
  • Large organisations often have difficulty managing and controlling staff expenses. Cashplus makes expense management transparent and easy to manage
  • Small businesses, particularly start-ups, can find it difficult to open bank accounts because they have no credit history. The Cashplus account is guaranteed for UK registered companies
  • Local authorities find managing payments expensive and cumbersome. Cashplus reduces the risk of fraud and provides an effective solution for claimants without bank accounts

Richard Wagner, CEO of APS, explained; "We spoke to organisations and individuals about the payment issues they had. We then tried to solve them with Cashplus. One of the major ones was the limitations and penalties of Direct Debit and we’re very proud of the way we’ve solved that. We’re delighted that the payment industry has recognised our innovation and we’re very proud of winning this Award."

The Award recognises APS as a market leader across the whole of Europe.

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About Advanced Payment Solutions Ltd (APS)

With almost 600,000 cards issued and over £750,000,000 in payment turnover, APS is one of the world’s most innovative payment solutions companies and the most awarded prepaid card provider in Europe. The company’s flagship product, the award-winning Cashplus prepaid Gold MasterCard, is the UK’s first and best known general purpose prepaid card for consumers.

Small-to-medium sized businesses (SME) and government bodies alike are also now enjoying the benefits of APS’ flexible payment solutions, with nearly 3,000 companies and a range of local councils now using Cashplus cards to streamline their payments, manage expenses and take control of their day-to-day banking.

24 May 2012

Prepaid cardholders finally get the opportunity to have an overdraft

Many people find having an overdraft essential. After all, having an overdraft provides a handy credit buffer that can smooth out cash flow if regular income doesn’t quite match outgoings from time to time. So for example, with an overdraft in place, if a higher than expected bill comes in, it could still be paid even though there isn’t enough of the customer’s own money left in the account to cover it.

In fact, overdrafts are so useful that 35% of bank account holders in the UK have dipped into their overdraft in the last year1. And no wonder people are using this feature: times are tough for an awful lot of people throughout the UK right now, with many having to cope without a pay rise even though the cost of living has risen alarmingly.

Yet despite overdrafts being recognised as being handy for so many people, lots of customers with a basic bank account don’t have access to one – after all, banks aren’t obliged to offer them. And until very recently, prepaid card accounts in the UK did not typically come with the benefit of an Overdraft. So, how on earth can people get by if they need just a little help to keep things going for a short period of time?

Thankfully, Cashplus, a particularly innovative prepaid card brand, has recently started offering an overdraft to many of its customers. Just as with a typical bank overdraft, Cashplus customers can automatically dip into it when they don’t have enough of their own money in their prepaid card Account. And of course, it’s a reusable type of credit. So as long as the customer continues to repay at least part of the Overdraft, they can use it again and again.

The Cashplus Overdraft can be used for pretty much anything – for everyday essentials, emergencies, getting Direct Debits paid, unexpected bills and making cash withdrawals. In short, the Cashplus Overdraft is ideal for days when there’s just more going out than is coming in.

In fact, the Cashplus card and Account now offers so many useful benefits, it provides a package that’s better than what a typical bank account offers. To find out more about the innovative new overdraft feature, visit the Cashplus website.

1Source: http://www.totalinvestor.co.uk/i/news/show/1406

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About Advanced Payment Solutions Ltd (APS)

With almost 600,000 cards issued and over £750,000,000 in payment turnover, APS is one of the world’s most innovative payment solutions companies and the most awarded prepaid card provider in Europe. The company’s flagship product, the award-winning Cashplus prepaid Gold MasterCard, is the UK’s first and best known general purpose prepaid card for consumers.

Small-to-medium sized businesses (SME) and government bodies alike are also now enjoying the benefits of APS’ flexible payment solutions, with nearly 3,000 companies and a range of local councils now using Cashplus cards to streamline their payments, manage expenses and take control of their day-to-day banking.

09 May 2012

Cashplus Direct Debit Competition Winner

To mark the launch of the Cashplus Direct Debit service, a suitably impressive prize was offered: mortgage or rent paid for a year – worth up to £10,000. To enter the free prize draw, all customers had to do was set up a new Direct Debit and have it paid from his or her Cashplus Account whilst the promotion was running.

The draw has now taken place, and the incredibly lucky person who will have their rent payments taken care of for a year is John Polson. The ecstatic winner said, "I’m absolutely stunned. The Cashplus Direct Debit service is really handy, but to win such an amazing prize as well is a massive help with my finances. I’ve been with Cashplus for over three years now, and I’ve always found their card and Account invaluable. I just can’t tell you how great it feels to have the pressure of having my biggest monthly bill taken away".

Although the prize has already been won, the British public can still be on a winner by signing up for a Cashplus prepaid MasterCard® card Account, and taking advantage of the Cashplus Direct Debit service. After all, it’s considered to be the best Direct Debit service currently offered in the UK.

What makes the service so special is that on top of the usual Direct Debit features, the Cashplus service alerts customers if there isn’t enough in their Account to cover the payment, giving them time to top up. The service can also offer a loan of up to £1,000 to make sure the payment goes through on time – relieving the pressure on cash-strapped customers. And if a Direct Debit just can’t go through, there’s no penalty to pay.

This comes at a time when the big High Street banks are being criticised for their high penalty fees when Direct Debit payments bounce. For example, one banking giant recently tripled fines for its basic account for missed payments to a maximum of £241.

Richard Wagner, Chief Executive Officer at Advanced Payment Solutions (APS), the company behind Cashplus, added, "Congratulations to John for winning such a fantastic prize. We’re pleased with the number of customer who’ve seen the value of our new Direct Debit service, and hope that more and more people benefit from its unique package of features".

1Source: http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/saving/article-2071531/Barclays-hits-million-poorest-customers-TRIPLING-charges-basic-accounts.html

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About Advanced Payment Solutions Ltd (APS)

With almost 600,000 cards issued and over £750,000,000 in payment turnover, APS is one of the world’s most innovative payment solutions companies and the most awarded prepaid card provider in Europe. The company’s flagship product, the award-winning Cashplus prepaid Gold MasterCard, is the UK’s first and best known general purpose prepaid card for consumers.

Small-to-medium sized businesses (SME) and government bodies alike are also now enjoying the benefits of APS’ flexible payment solutions, with nearly 3,000 companies and a range of local councils now using Cashplus cards to streamline their payments, manage expenses and take control of their day-to-day banking.

19 April 2012

A Cashplus MasterCard® prepaid card can help people to stick to their IVA

With more and more people struggling to keep up with the cost of living, thousands are suffering from bad credit across the UK. In fact, many are opting to sign up for an Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA). This makes unsecured debt (such as credit card balances, personal loans and bank overdrafts) become frozen at 0% interest, and asks the companies involved to agree to repayments spread over five years. In many cases, as much as 70%* of the debt is written off at the end of the IVA. However, sticking to an IVA is tricky – the repayments are based on what the debtor can afford to repay, but leave very, very little spare cash each month. And of course, if someone has bad credit, getting even small loans would be nigh on impossible.

In fact, getting further unsecured credit is not allowed during the IVA, so setting a budget and sticking to it is absolutely critical. A Cashplus MasterCard® prepaid card can be a brilliant help with this. That’s because cardholders can keep track of spending and the Account balance 24/7 online, over the phone and via text – particularly useful if the customer is out and about and needs to know what they can sensibly afford to spend. And with a MasterCard, the route to bargains on the internet is open. In fact, the card can be used anywhere that the MasterCard logo is displayed – from supermarkets to ATMs.

What’s more, if the customer has debt with a bank that will be included in the IVA, he or she will need to set up an alternative, new account elsewhere to accept wages and make payments. High street banks can be wary of setting up accounts for people with bad credit, but again, prepaid cards can be a great help.

A Cashplus prepaid Gold MasterCard® card is an excellent alternative to a traditional bank account because it’s easy to have wages paid into it. What’s more, it also provides a Direct Debit service, so the customer can use it to set up Direct Debits and Standing Orders to pay everything from his or her rent or mortgage to electricity bills and mobile phone contracts.

In fact, with free low balance text alerts and no penalty fees if Direct Debits are bounced, this Direct Debit service is probably twice as good as any other currently offered in the UK.

It’s as easy to open a Cashplus prepaid Gold MasterCard Account as it is convenient to use one. Even if the customer has bad credit, as long as the applicant is 18 or over and lives in the UK, acceptance is guaranteed. There are no credit checks involved to open an Account. Ordering a card takes just minutes online and after it’s been paid for, it will arrive through the post in just three to five business days.

So, anyone that has signed up to an IVA, or is about to try to have one put in place, and therefore needs to keep to a tight budget, should consider ordering a prepaid card as soon as possible.

*Source: http://www.iva.co.uk/what_is_an_iva.asp

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About Advanced Payment Solutions Ltd (APS)

With almost 600,000 cards issued and over £750,000,000 in payment turnover, APS is one of the world’s most innovative payment solutions companies and the most awarded prepaid card provider in Europe. The company’s flagship product, the award-winning Cashplus prepaid Gold MasterCard, is the UK’s first and best known general purpose prepaid card for consumers.

Small-to-medium sized businesses (SME) and government bodies alike are also now enjoying the benefits of APS’ flexible payment solutions, with nearly 3,000 companies and a range of local councils now using Cashplus cards to streamline their payments, manage expenses and take control of their day-to-day banking.

01 March 2012

New Cheaper and Easier Alternative to ‘Free’ Banking

The first fundamental change to the way Direct Debits can be set up and managed in 40 years has been launched today. The new service offered by Cashplus® provides consumers with a cheaper, transparent and easier to manage alternative to traditional banking. Cashplus® could save customers more than £400million a year as it doesn’t charge penalties if Direct Debit payments would send the account into overdraft.

Cashplus’ new Direct Debit service has a number of unique benefits, including:

  • Low balance alerts – If it looks like a Direct Debit is going to bounce, Cashplus will alert you by SMS and email before the payment is due
  • Instant loans for just 50p a day – If you don’t have the money, Cashplus offer a loan up to £1,000 to guarantee your bill is paid on time.
  • No penalty fees (Debit Protect) – If a Direct Debit can’t go through Cashplus won’t hurt your pockets further by imposing a penalty

Already trialled with over 100,000 existing customers, Cashplus is likely to appeal to a wide range of people. However it is particularly attractive to those without bank accounts who, until now, have not been able to access the discounts that many companies offer to customers paying by Direct Debit.

To mark the launch, between 8th February and 31st March, Cashplus customers who set up and pay a Direct Debit via their Cashplus account will be entered into a prize draw, with the lucky winner having their rent or mortgage paid for a year (up to £10,000).

Richard Wagner, CEO of Cashplus said; "A common reason for people getting into debt is that a Direct Debit bounces, sometimes simply because another payment hasn’t gone through. The bank then imposes a penalty, as high as £24, which puts the customer further into the red and into a spiral of debt as more payments then can’t be met, just at a time when money is tightest.

"We have built this product by talking to customers and trying to address the complaints they have about banks and financial institutions. We believe this new service is truly unique. One of our key drivers has been to make all our costs completely transparent, so although the account is not ‘free’ the actual cost, taking account of typical penalties paid by bank customers, is small."

To find out more about the Cashplus card and to enter the prize draw go to: www.facebook.com/cashplus.

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About Advanced Payment Solutions Ltd (APS)

With almost 600,000 cards issued and over £750,000,000 in payment turnover, APS is one of the world’s most innovative payment solutions companies and the most awarded prepaid card provider in Europe. The company’s flagship product, the award-winning Cashplus prepaid Gold MasterCard, is the UK’s first and best known general purpose prepaid card for consumers.

Small-to-medium sized businesses (SME) and government bodies alike are also now enjoying the benefits of APS’ flexible payment solutions, with nearly 3,000 companies and a range of local councils now using Cashplus cards to streamline their payments, manage expenses and take control of their day-to-day banking.

17 January 2012

Cash businesses thrive with Cashplus prepaid cards

From taxis and takeaways to laundrettes and newsagents, many businesses out there handle a lot of cash. To avoid this hard-earned money becoming lost or stolen, it’s recommended that the cash received is transferred daily1. But the fees for paying in cash over the counter can soon add up to a significant amount. A quick search online revealed one bank charging as much as 85p per £100 deposited!2

Despite the top four banks having a stranglehold over small business accounts in the UK (they have over 80% of the market3), there is an excellent alternative that offers great value for money: a Cashplus Business Expense Prepaid MasterCard® Account.

Prepaid accounts are rapidly growing in popularity for many reasons. For starters, with the Cashplus Account, the monthly fee that traditional business bank accounts typically charge is replaced by an annual fee of just £29.99. And there are no irksome fees for paying in cash. What’s more, cash can be paid in for free at over 1,400 Cashplus retail stores across the UK. It’s also free to top up the Account via phone and online bank transfers.

In fact, with free online banking available 24/7, monitoring payments and transfers is quick, easy and convenient. But the Cashplus Account isn’t just great for making free inbound transfers. Coming complete with a MasterCard card, it makes paying for everything from office supplies online to buying fuel at a garage a piece of cake. The card’s Account can also be used to pay Direct Debits and Standing Orders, ideal for automatically sorting out regular payments, such as for rent, business rates and electricity.

Setting up a Cashplus Business Expense Prepaid MasterCard Account is simplicity itself. There’s no time wasted on travelling backwards and forwards to a bank – an application for a prepaid account takes just minutes online, any time of day. Also, no matter what the businesses’ current credit rating, as long as the applicant is aged 18 or over and the business is based in the UK, acceptance is guaranteed.

So, any business that involves regular payments in cash from its customers should consider the many advantages that prepaid cards offer over traditional business bank accounts.

1Source: http://www.dwmbeancounter.com/tips.html

2Source: http://www.barclays.co.uk/Businessbankaccounts/Comparebankaccountpackages/P1242559194697 and correct as at 3 January 2012.

3Source: http://www.startups.co.uk/business-bank-account.html

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About Advanced Payment Solutions Ltd (APS)

With almost 600,000 cards issued and over £750,000,000 in payment turnover, APS is one of the world’s most innovative payment solutions companies and the most awarded prepaid card provider in Europe. The company’s flagship product, the award-winning Cashplus prepaid Gold MasterCard, is the UK’s first and best known general purpose prepaid card for consumers.

Small-to-medium sized businesses (SME) and government bodies alike are also now enjoying the benefits of APS’ flexible payment solutions, with nearly 3,000 companies and a range of local councils now using Cashplus cards to streamline their payments, manage expenses and take control of their day-to-day banking.