In June 2020, Curve, a fintech service that lets people combine their credit and debit cards in one card and app, was left unable to process payments after its legacy payment service provider had its license suddenly suspended in the United Kingdom. The situation meant that Curve’s 1.4 million users at the time were unable to use its service. Putting the very future of the business at risk.
Fast forward a mere 60 hours, and Curve’s customers were able to spend again, with payments processed by Checkout.com. No wonder Ruslan Barenboym, Head of Business and Fincrime Operations at Curve, describes the payments service provider as “the agile, flexible, hard-working heroes we needed to get us back up and running.”
The fintech world may have broken from the slow, plodding reputation of its financial predecessors. Even still, for a payment partner to fully activate a new customer in just 60 hours from a standing start is a remarkable achievement. Those two and a half days included systems implementation and integration, contract negotiations, compliance and user onboarding.
“No corners were cut,” says Matthieu Barral, SVP Sales at Checkout.com. “We followed the same implementation process that we do for every client; we just attributed the correct resources to make sure it happened in the timeframe needed. And, when you consider all this work took place over a weekend, it demonstrated an extra level of personal commitment from everyone in the team to own the customer’s pressure as much as they were feeling it.”
“Fundamentally, this was about technological superiority," adds Barral. "Though the call from Curve was unexpected and the delivery timeline unusual, it was the sort of challenge that our technology is purposely designed to solve."
Core to this is the API-first development methodology that the platform is built on; and the modular approach to how merchants access various features. This combination lets customers plug into Checkout.com without the need for burdensome reconfiguring of their current systems and then add new capabilities with the same speed and freedom.
But technology alone only goes so far. “In the fast-moving, high-pressure situation we found ourselves in, we appreciated having a calm and knowledgeable partner to guide us,” recalls Curve's Barenboym. “It was clear that this was just another day at the office for the Checkout.com team. They knew precisely what was required to get us up and running quickly.”
Checkout.com's ability to solve complex problems for clients came to the fore again later in 2020, as it helped Curve navigate the consequences of Brexit. With the UK’s formal exit date from the EU looming, Curve received its license to operate in Europe and required support to process payments from its European customers on the continent.
“Checkout.com stepped up to the plate again and quickly set us up to process payments through its French acquiring license,” says Barenboym. "At every stage, we were guided and supported by their legal and regulatory experts, which made the process seamless and gave us confidence that we would be ready for the deadline.”
Echoing Barenboym’s comments, Barral explains that such expertise is often neglected when businesses look for a payment partner. “Every business is unique and has nuanced needs and challenges. As much as a platform like Checkout.com can serve those needs, you also have to have people with the knowledge to guide you to the right decisions and take the right actions.”
Checkout.com’s guidance isn’t only helping Curve navigate the complexities of the modern business environment; it’s also allowing them to optimize its payment performance to unlock more revenue. “We’re enjoying 95% payment approval rates with Checkout.com,” says Barenboym. “This is an uplift of 10% compared to what we achieved with our previous provider and it's unlocking hundreds of thousands of dollars a year in revenue."
"These impressive numbers are a testament to the hard work of all the teams at Checkout.com," adds Barenboym. "They're a true partner that's constantly working to find new ways to improve our overall payments performance. And their efforts are incredibly valuable as even the smallest uplift in approval rate has a notable impact on our bottom line."
Curve has enjoyed similar success with its chargeback and fraud rates, running at less than 0.04%. This low number has been maintained by Checkout.com’s dedicated disputes team working closely with Curve to closely monitor their portfolio to identify any patterns of fraudulent activities.
“This is another example of how we haven’t just invested in a payment platform, but a payment partner,” concludes Barenboym.
The partnership is set to continue as Curve executes its ambitious growth plans by expanding into the United States. “Checkout.com is the perfect payments partner to support our expansion,” says Barenboym. “It already has an impressive team with a wealth of experience in the United States — the support they’re providing is already proving invaluable. And its solution-set is already best-in-class and improving every day.”