MAG Insights

Announcements from the MAG & Featured Articles

MAG Membership Perspective: The Benefits of Collaboration in the Payments Ecosystem (MAG Quarterly- Volume Six, Issue Two)

Square Logo
By Brian Mullins, Head of Risk Operations
Chris Sweetland, Head of Industry & Payments Partnerships
Jon Amadei, Strategic Risk Partnerships
Square, Inc.


June 7, 2018

As one of the newest members of the MAG, we’re thrilled to be part of a community focused on leveraging collaboration and advocacy in support of merchants nationwide. At Square, our company purpose is economic empowerment, a belief we feel aligns directly with MAG’s own. Over the years, while our business has changed and grown dramatically, Square’s goals have remained the same; we want to make access to the payments ecosystem seamless, safe, and accessible. Alongside MAG, we will further amplify the voices of millions of small businesses across the US—particularly those who have largely been left behind—when addressing the needs of all that participate in the payment card industry and balancing incentives appropriately for the good of the ecosystem.  

Utilizing our scale as a large merchant is a critical component of our ability to effectively advocate for small businesses. We are constantly developing deep knowledge of our sellers and our sellers’ customers to help drive better decision-making while encouraging positive feedback loops. Too often, merchants are left guessing at what actions might best improve transaction quality, perceptions of risk, and the ecosystem between card acceptors and the banks. By increasing transactional transparency or assigning low-risk flags to particular transactions, we can create a mutually beneficial system in which all parties can trust. There’s so much more we can do to collaborate in order to increase approval rates, reduce chargebacks, increase win rates, and eliminate fraud. And that’s only scratching the surface of what we can accomplish when we approach the industry with a shared interest in empowering underserved small businesses.

We joined MAG to be part of an influential merchant community to help small businesses find their voice as part of a larger, impact-driven organization. In thinking through how we can work together as a merchant consortium, we believe that there is substantial power in the volume of payments data we maintain as a collective. We look forward to working together to leverage our scale, unravel the inner workings of the industry’s black boxes, and to advocate on behalf of retailers, merchants and small businesses around the country.