The MAG 2015 Annual Conference
Online Registration Now Open
The 2015 MAG Annual Conference, “Tomorrowland–The Future of Payments,” will be held September 22-24 at the Hyatt Regency in San Antonio, TX. The “Tomorrowland” theme will emphasize the rapidly changing dynamics in U.S. payments. Mobile commerce is driving one of the greatest change periods in payments in the past several decades. The marketplace momentum toward digital payments coupled with the recent advent of enhanced merchant routing choice, is helping make this era one of the most dynamic and interesting times for U.S. payment professionals. Join us as we explore the mysteries and potentials of our own payments Tomorrowland. MAG members receive three complimentary registrations.

With over 90 of the top merchant companies in attendance, the conference will feature keynote addresses from First Data, Discover and MasterCard as well as educational sessions covering:
  • Chargebacks
  • ACH
  • the Federal Reserve’s Faster Payments Roadmap
  • Mobile Commerce
  • Tokenization
  • Authentication
  • PCI
  • NFC
  • the latest on EMV
By attending you will hear from top Acquirer, Network and Merchant Executives who will provide industry insights and what is top of mind in the payment space.

“We value our long-standing relationship with the Merchant Advisory Council (MAG), who help drive change and collaboration in the payments industry. Chase has been involved with MAG since its inception in 2007 and is pleased to see the organization evolve into a leading voice on topics including security, PCI standards, emerging payments and technologies.”

– Mike Clark, Chase Commerce Solutions and MAG Elite Acquirer Sponsor

*View Conference Agenda
*Subject to Change
With NFC, the Devils in the Details
By Mark Horwedel, Merchant Advisory Group

After several years of dormancy, Apple resurrected NFC, however, it remains to be seen if NFC will ultimately prosper and become the kind of ubiquitous payment technology that today is unique to payment cards. Read the Full Article
What’s Up in Washington: Why We Shouldn’t be Politicizing EMV
By Liz Garner, Merchant Advisory Group

There has been a fair amount of finger pointing between industry stakeholders as to whose fault it is that EMV is not likely to become a widespread reality in the US this year. Regardless of where the blame falls, we cannot afford to shy away from reality. The truth is that several market stakeholders have fallen short of providing the infrastructure necessary for the US to be fully EMV implemented by the October liability shift timelines. Read the Full Article
Card Not Present Processing Rates: Who Carries the Burden?
By Troy Carrothers, Kohl’s Department Stores

In a world where commerce is evolving rapidly with the introduction of new payment channels and form factors, the fee structures merchants pay for acceptance of third party credit card transactions are becoming more outdated and inequitable.  This is evidenced in the distinction the large credit networks place on transactions defined as Card Present (CP) or Card Not Present (CNP). Read the Full Article

Events and Education
MAG Educational Webinars
Join the MAG on June 24 for a town hall meeting where MAG CEO, Mark Horwedel, and MAG VP, Liz Garner, will discuss payments issues of the day and update you on current MAG activities. Bring your questions and be ready to become informed. Email the MAG to submit your questions in advance. Register Today!

View the 2015 MAG webinar schedule
MAG Insights
The MAG publishes many whitepapers and press releases in the MAG Insights section of the website homepage. Make sure to visit the website often to view these important announcements.


Newly Added Member Only Benefits to MAG Website
MAGMails Posted to Member Resources
Recently, all of the MAGMail email communications from the past two years have been archived to the Member Resources section for easy access for members. Simply log in, click on Use Our Resources, View Member Resources and they are listed under “MAGMail Member Communications”

Job Postings
MAG Members can post job openings on the MAG website for free. Simply email the MAG with the job description and application links. All job openings will be posted for 30 days. Click on Stay Informed, then Job Opportunities.

Sponsor Search Added to Online Directory
Making it even more convenient for members, all MAG sponsor contacts have been added to the Online Directory search. Simply log in, click on Use Our Resources, Member Directory and enter your search criteria.
Coming Soon To Your Website and Mobile App: Increased Fraud...
How to prepare yourself for the increase in CNP fraud due to EMV
By Chester Ritchie, Worldpay

Preparing for CNP fraud with the country’s transition to EMV is essential.  Fraudsters will shift attention from card present fraud to card not present fraud as proven in other parts of the world.  There are solutions to add security to the eComm market. Read the Full Article
Merchants and PIN Debit Networks Share a Common Interest
By Christopher Poole, CU24

Financial institutions, and for CU24 that means credit unions, are learning to live with the new realities of reduced interchange income and lack of control over debit transaction routing. While merchants have understandably leveraged their regulatory prerogatives, placing downward pressure on interchange rates, there has been a resulting convergence on pricing among the various regional, PIN debit networks — even for exempt financial institutions. Read the Full Article

Also in this Issue
EMV – What’s Happening in the Industry
The Merchant Advisory Group recently completed a blind survey of its membership to determine EMV implementation plans as well as to discover concerns relative to implementation. As anticipated, EMV implementation is not as far along as proclaimed by many members of the payments industry, primarily due to the failure of the international card brands to agree to participate in a common application for U.S. debit card processing. Read the Full Article
MAG Files Comments with CFPB on Reversals and Account Hold Practices
This spring, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) issued a Request for Information on the credit card market. The MAG submitted feedback covering the importance of transparency and consistency in card issuer practices surrounding voids, cancelations, and reversals, as well as pre-authorizations and release of account holds. View the Comments
The MAG as an Advocate
The MAG continues to advocate for merchants’ rights to route debit transactions as required by the Durbin amendment. Recently, public news sources have reported on the ongoing debate over whether the law is being violated. We have included some of these stories below.
The MAG is On The Road
MAG CEO, Mark Horwedel and MAG Vice President, Liz Garner, will be representing the MAG in many industry events over the next several months:

  • Mark Horwedel
    • June 2-4: VISA Payments Forum
    • June 24-25: KC Fed Meeting
    • July 7: MAG SIG Small Ticket Meeting - DC
Welcome MAG New Members and Sponsors!
(Since 3/5/15)
MAG Members
Arby's Restaurant Group, Inc.
Unified Grocers, Inc.
GOLD Sponsor
Card Connect

CardConnect® is a rapidly growing payments technology company that provides solutions for companies that accept bank card transactions, store sensitive data and seek to push the boundaries of innovation. Click here for more.

SILVER Sponsor 
CMS Payments Intelligence

CMSpi is an independent team of expert consultants and analysts, advising and assisting merchants to reduce their payment acceptance costs. Click here for more.

View a complete listing of MAG Sponsors

Questions or comments? Contact the MAG at

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