October 23, 2012

Chexar, a check conversion solutions provider, will offer a new platform in partnership with Visa to allow Visa prepaid cardholders to deposit the funds from their checks on to their prepaid cards with their cell phone. Cardholders with RushCard, AccountNow, Plastyc and select FSV Payment Systems will be to enroll their Visa prepaid cards in the remote deposit capture service later this year, according to a statement released by Chexar.

The platform uses Chexar's remote deposit capture technology to deposit checks remotely, and, most significantly, the funds will be available immediately on the customer's card. The ability to have immediate access to those funds is especially important for the low-income customers who tend to favor prepaid cards, the company's CEO Drew Edwards said during a phone interview. "With Bluebird [from American Express] the checks can take days to clear. That doesn't work for the underbanked," Edwards noted. And many of the underbanked customers that Chexar is targeting will find a great deal of convenience in using remote deposit capture: "This will enable them to never have to stand in line at a check casher," Edwards added.

[See Related: Consumers Want Bank-Offered Prepaid Cards, Survey Says]

In addition to remote deposits to prepaid cards, Chexar's platform will also enable transfers between Direct Deposit Accounts and payment cards, person-to-person payments and bill payment services in-person, online and via mobile. Such services are often not available to prepaid cardholders who are underbanked. "We're focused on a particular part of the market that may not have a bank account for P2P," Edwards said.

Transactions using the system will originate and terminate with a partner financial institution, according to Chexar's press release, and will sit in an FDIC-insured account.

Jonathan Camhi is a graduate of the City University of New York's Graduate School of Journalism, where he focused on international reporting and interned at the Hindustan Times in Delhi, ...