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September 13, 2013

PayPal Pledges to Overhaul Approach to Crowdfunding

PayPal

PayPal this week promised to review how it handles crowd-funding efforts after several projects had their funding frozen by the online payment service.

In a blog post, PayPal said that crowd-funding campaigns - made popular in the past year or two by services like Kickstarter and Indiegogo - are a new concept and therefore "potentially open to abuse."

"PayPal has a responsibility to ensure that the system remains secure, in compliance with government regulations around the world, and that consumers who contribute to these campaigns understand where their money is going," wrote Tomer Barel, vice president of risk management at PayPal.

The company is not opposed to helping crowd-funding projects. "When done right, crowdfunding is a powerful catalyst for innovation," Barel wrote. "However, it's clear that our existing policies and processes aren't working quite right for this particular fundraising model."

Among those who ran into trouble with PayPal was Norway-based Red Thread Games, which saw ticket sales for its first fan convention, Journeycon One, frozen by PayPal for about a day this week. That came after the firm raised more than $1.5 million on Kickstarter back in March for its game Dreamfall Chapters.



February 27, 2013

PayPal Heading to Coinstar Machines

Coinstar PayPal The next time you need to withdraw money from your PayPal account, you might be able to simply head over to your local Coinstar machine.

Coinstar on Wednesday announced that it has begun rolling out PayPal functionality on select self-service coin-counting kiosks. The rollout began this month in Texas, Northern California, and Ohio and will continue at select kiosks throughout the year, Coinstar said.

The new feature enables customers to withdraw funds from their PayPal accounts, or send money to other PayPal users. Users can also deposit coins and paper currency into their PayPal account right from the machine. Coinstar's standard 9.8 percent fee is deducted from all coin deposits, and customers are limited to adding $500 to their PayPal account from the kiosk each month.

"We're delighted to work with Coinstar to enable our users to transact anytime, anywhere and in any way," Dan Schatt, head of financial innovations at PayPal, said in a statement. "PayPal on Coinstar kiosks provide customers with a convenient way to add coins and paper currency to their PayPal account and spend their money anywhere PayPal is accepted."

At this point, it doesn't look like the functionality is widely available, however. Users can search Coinstar's website to see if a PayPal-equipped kiosk is available in their area. A quick search for a few ZIP codes in New York City turned up no available kiosks. Users can sign up to get an alert when the functionality comes to a kiosk in their area.



November 2, 2012

PayPal Launches Price Matching, Free Return Shipping for Holidays

PayPal Price Match

PayPal this week launched a new price-matching program and free return shipping for the holiday season.

The e-commerce company said it would give customers cash back if they notice an item they purchase through their PayPal account is advertised for cheaper elsewhere. The deal is available now through the end of the year, but you must request a refund within 30 days of your purchase. Refunds are limited to $250 on any one item, and $1,000 per user throughout the promotional period, PayPal said.

"If the item you purchase is advertised for lower with any merchant within 30 days of purchase, you can receive a reimbursement for the difference," PayPal shopping specialist Claudia Lombana wrote in a blog post Thursday. "It doesn’t matter if you bought the item online, in a store or a new item from eBay’s Top-rated sellers using 'Buy It Now.'"

The deal is even available on airline tickets, she added. If the same carrier drops the price of tickets within seven days of your purchase, you could get the difference back. 



October 29, 2012

PayPal Cuts 325 Jobs in Restructuring

paypal iphn pay pic

PayPal today eliminated more than 400 jobs as it consolidated several of its product groups.

The company laid off 325 full-time employees, primarily in its product and tech groups, as well as 120 contract workers.

The move comes after PayPal said it redesigned its product organization and collapsed nine product groups into one.

"Instead of being organized around projects, our teams will now be dedicated to products and focused on our customers — consumers, developers, small businesses and large retailers," PayPal president David Marcus wrote in a blog post.

Marcus said PayPal is "strong and performing well," the layoffs are necessary to simplify the company.

"Moving forward, I'm confident these changes will make PayPal even better and stronger," Marcus continued. "Our customers can expect faster innovation and great products and experiences that make their lives simpler. That's our commitment — every day."



April 18, 2012

PayPal Again Boosts eBay to Profits

PayPal Here

For the past quarters, eBay's success has been built on the foundation of its PayPal Payments business. The company continued that trend Wednesday, with a boost from its traditional Marketplaces business as a bonus.

EBay reported net income of $570 million, a 20 percent increase over the same period a year ago. Revenue also jumped 29 percent to $3.28 billion.

In part, that's due to the continued success of eBay's Payments business, also known as PayPal. Payments recorded $1.309 billion in revenue, up 29 percent from the same period a year ago. Total payment volume increased by 24 percent to $33.9 billion, with its Merchant Services division that serves companies outside of eBay outperforming the use of PayPal on eBay by a 2:1 ratio. Home Depot, for example, allows shoppers to pay with PayPal at its 2,000 or so U.S. stores.

PayPal also recently launched Paypal Here, a credit-card reader for mobile point-of-sale payments.



February 28, 2012

PayPal Rolls Out In-Store Payment to Home Depot Locations Nationwide

PayPal POS Terminal

After a six-week test program, PayPal is rolling out an in-store payment system to Home Depots throughout the country. Within the next two weeks, almost every one of Home Depot's 2,000 U.S. locations will be equipped to accept payment through a PayPal card or a mobile phone and PIN number combination.

"The Home Depot integration is a great milestone for us, proof that we're making our vision for the future of shopping a reality, but it's only the beginning," PayPal vice president of retail and prepaid products Don Kingsborough said in a blog post. "We're going to continue re-imagining money to make it work better for our retail partners and their valued customers–stay tuned for more exciting innovations to come."

At the beginning of January, PayPal began testing the point-of-sale system at five Home Depots. On Monday, it began to roll out the platform to stores in Texas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Florida, and the North Plains. On March 2, it will expand to West Coast cities, the greater New York area, and Boston, New Jersey, and Philadelphia. The following week, it will launch in the Midwest, Mid-Atlantic, the Southeast, Chicago, and St. Louis.



January 4, 2012

Yahoo Selects PayPal’s Thompson as CEO

Yahoo CEO Scott Thompson

Yahoo on Wednesday named Scott Thompson, a former PayPal exec, as its CEO, effective Jan. 9.

Tim Morse, who has been serving as interim CEO, will resume his role as chief financial officer.

Most recently, Thompson was president of PayPal, but over the years, he also served as the company's senior vice president and chief technology officer.

"My immediate focus will be on getting to know the entire team and hearing more from all Yahoo's, working closely with the engineers and product teams, and diving deeply into our products and services to learn more about what our more than 700 million users find most engaging and useful," Thompson said in a statement.

"[Thompson's] deep understanding of online businesses combined with his team building and operational capabilities will restore the energy, focus, and momentum necessary to grow the core business and deliver increased value for our shareholders," Roy Bostock, chairman of the Yahoo board, said in a statement. "The search committee and the entire board concluded that he is the right leader to return the core business to a path of robust growth and industry-leading innovation."

Bostock said Thompson's primary focus will be "the core business," but what that core business might look like in the future is anyone's guess. Bostock acknowledged that "Yahoo is considering a wide range of opportunities for the company's business, as well as specific investments or dispositions of assets."



July 20, 2011

eBay’s Profits Sink; PayPal Continues Strong Growth

eBay reported healthy but diminished profits and a 25 percent jump in revenue for the company's second quarter. The company's PayPal or Payments business also continued to make up a larger chunk of the business.

eBay reported net income of $283.4 million on revenue of $2.8 billion, a 31 percent decrease in profits against a 25 percent increase in revenue. The company's profits were dragged down by charges associated with its GSI Commerce for $2.4 billion.

eBay's Marketplaces auction and sales division recorded $1.67 billion in revenue, a 19 percent increase. But net revenue from its Payments division increased by 31 percent to $1.07 billion. eBay's Payments business now represents 39 percent of the company's revenue, up from 37 percent a year ago.



May 27, 2011

PayPal Sues Google for Stealing Mobile Payment Secrets

PayPal has sued Google and two of its top execs, both former PayPal employees, for stealing trade secrets that helped the search company break into the multi-billion dollar mobile payments industry.

Hours after Stephanie Tilenius, Google's VP of Commerce, and Osama Bedier, VP of Payments, announced Google Wallet, a groundbreaking initiative to make mobile payments commercial, PayPal filed a 28-page lawsuit in California accusing Google and the two employees for misappropriating information and actively poaching other PayPal employees.

Tilenius joined Google in October 2009 as VP of Commerce after serving in various leadership roles at PayPal and eBay since 2001. Bedier jumped from PayPal's VP of Platform, Mobile, and New Ventures to become Google's VP of Payments in January 2010.