Mercator Blog

Prepaid Advisory Service Update
Date: November 28, 2017
Research Team
It is my pleasure to join the Mercator Advisory Group as director of the Prepaid Advisory Service. That said, I wanted to share some of my background, which was gained through hands-on experience in the financial services industry, specifically the payments sector.

My prepaid debit card knowledge stems from managing and growing the prepaid general purpose reloadable (GPR) portfolio at ACE Cash Express. We issued approximately 75,000 cards per month at 1,400 locations throughout the United States via a highly integrated API system with Netspend. My thirst for knowledge next led me to work at an issuing bank/program manager to better understand all of the nuances of the industry. Most recently, I worked for a SaaS company that was bringing forward a prepaid debit card that is totally managed via the mobile app and that can be custom branded for the client, with the onboarding process of new programs completed within 30 to 45 days.

Where it all began . . . . I started my career as a teller in a community bank and held a variety of positions, including branch manager, new business development, treasury services, and sales manager. After working the front line for many years, I proceeded to pursue opportunities that were more strategic in nature, including being a key player in a de nova bank where I handled the marketing, advertising, and product launch. After surviving many mergers and acquisitions, I found myself becoming an expert and helped to manage multiple successful back-to-back core system conversions as well as manage the product development and launch for an $8 billion, four-state bank holding company. Always wanting to learn, I then worked for Chase Paymentech (now JP Morgan Chase merchant services), a leading international merchant acquirer, where I communicated the card brands and debit network interchange rates as well as card brand requirements for the U.S., Canada, and the United Kingdom, for Visa, Mastercard, American Express, and Discover.

So enough about me. I would very much like to have an open dialogue with all of my clients on a frequent and regular basis. As you are aware, this newsletter is one of the tools I will use to communicate with you periodically, but please expect me to reach out via email or phone as well to discuss certain topics I am writing on, or to glean an additional perspective. And I encourage you to reach out to me with concerns or ideas for research topics you would like to see covered by Mercator Prepaid Advisory Service.

You probably noticed that our most recent publication on prepaid debit cards, the 14th Annual U.S. Closed-Loop Prepaid Cards Market Forecasts, 2017–2020 has been posted on the Mercator Advisory Group website. The 2018 Prepaid Outlook will be posted in mid-December. The research agenda of topics for the research reports and viewpoints slated for 2018 is currently being determined, but it is open to change as we strive to be timely and relevant to the ever-changing marketplace. Have some suggestions for a topic? Please send them to me for consideration at Hopefully, topics of interest to you will be relevant to multiple members.

Happy Holidays to All!!


C. Sue Brown
Director, Prepaid Advisory Service
Mercator Advisory Group