There really are some decent people in the world, but you won’t find them at META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC., CFSI or among the NBPCA

NOT THERE YET…. MUST KEEP LOOKING

6/14/2012

Meta is among first to commit to CSFI Compass Principles

On June 14,2012,  the Center for Financial Services Innovation (CFSI) announced, “Three Companies Publicly Commit to Improving Consumers’ Lives through Financial Offerings”.

[ So the topic is improving consumers’ lives through financial offerings through META Payment Systems… Can I believe this based on my own experience using META PAYMENT SYSTEMS?]

The announcement was made from the CFSI Underbanked Forum [ Underbanked Forum indicates that there is a certain bias to what will be said next.]  in San Francisco. Meta Payment Systems was named by Jennifer Tescher, CFSI’s President and CEO, as publically committing to, “specific, measurable, high-impact initiatives that embody these Principles.” [Focusing on the underbanked by META BANK has always lacked principles; this feels like empty verbiage.]

[ “Underbanked” is almost code language for saying that among those banks setting out to scam those people who live from pay check to pay check and who ,if they become injured or ill and are unable to work will have no health insurance and therefore incur excess debt which garner fabulous incomes for those banks that serve the underbanked.

Banks that serve the underbanked begin with an immoral concept that they can and should charge higher interest rates to riskier borrowers so they must seek them out….

.. This is immoral.

It appears as if this conference is a form of patting themselves on the back by a group of insiders.

The general public and many of META PAYMENT SYSTEMS former customers would not give them any kind of a pat on the back nor any kind of compliment.]

The Compass Principles are aspirational guidelines that define high standards for prepaid products and inspire change. The four core principles (Embrace Inclusion, Build Trust, Promote Success and Create Opportunity) are a perfect extension of Meta’s core values and mission to promote financial inclusion for everyone. Mick Conlin, Senior Vice President of Product Management and John Hagy, Chief Legal Officer, both from Meta, participated on CFSI’s Compass Principles for Prepaid Advisory Council, which guided the creation of the Compass Principles.

[Is this a bad joke?  “Embrace Inclusion, Build Trust, Promote Success and Create Opportunity” as four operating principles for META PAYMENT SYSTEMS.

# 1 META PAYMENT SYSTEMS wants everybody’s money so that is embracing inclusion

#2 META PAYMENT SYSTEMS’ publicity is designed to give consumers and potential business partners who will provide them with access to their customer “a sense of trust”…. It is a false sense of security based on false and misleading promises

#3 META PAYMENT SYSTEMS is designed to promote their own financial success. The partner company will also gain some increased income for a brief period of time, but in the long run, the partner company will lose their customer base because of the way they have been mistreated by META PAYMENT SYSTEMS which is really only a collections agency. META PAYMENT SYSTEMS works like a loan shark as a collection agency. META PAYMENT SYSTEMS is not a genuine solution for consumers and it will create a real nightmare for the “Underbanked.”

#4 META PAYMENT SYSTEMS promises opportunity to customers and partner businesses alike. The financial opportunity is really for META PAYMENT SYSTEMS; the rest don’t matter except for bringing more and more money into META PAYMENT SYSTEMS. Once META PAYMENT SYSTEMS has milked the partnership dry, they move on.

In order to create industry-leading products that are consumer centric,[ The major complaint has been that META BANK doesn’t give a damn about  the general welfare of their customer base as long as they can make money off of them. “Consumer Centric”  as far as META PAYMENT SYSTEMS is concerned is an empty term. META PAYMENT SYSTEMS may use the term “Consumer Centric” but it is only a marketing tool to get those consumers and to get partners who will push the META PAYMENT SYSTEMS product off onto their customer base… customer service if rated by the customers themselves for META PAYMENT SYSTEMS would receive a failing grade.]

Meta has been working to incorporate the Compass Principles into prepaid program policies and guidelines. In addition, Meta has committed to support CFSI’s goal to measure industry impact.

[This last paragraph seems to be empty words and empty promises. I have previously complained about Meta Bank’s CEOs using empty and meaningless terminology that simply fills the air with wind, but no real information.

What real changes has META PAYMENT SYSTEMS made to improve their customer service???

It appears that META PAYMENT SYSTEMS frequently changes their products name, but that for years they have offered the exact same product which is that of being a collections agency and one that is really good at doing publicity, but their product has done nothing to improve the economic conditions for the greatest population they serve nor even for their expanded customer base. 

#1 Specifically what has META PAYMENT SYSTEMS done to improve the way that they serve consumers?

#2 In what concrete ways has META PAYMENT SYSTEMS committed to support CFSI’s goal to measure industry impact?

If META PAYMENT SYSTEMS has a long standing pattern to discount customer’s expressed needs, to lie to their customers and to use us for their own gain as if we were their own personal economic slaves, do they even understand what decent people do and how they behave?

If they haven’t already considered what is decent and morally responsible to and for consumers as they set themselves up, how will they even understand what that phrase means?

Common decency doesn’t seem to be one of META PAYMENT SYSTEMS concerns; all of their previous actions over many years has been unscrupulous. This sounds like empty words made just to please someone somewhere.

We, the real consumers, and not some group of insiders, need to see real results!!!]

Who is CFSI and what are the Compass Principles?

Center for Financial Services Information

The following information mimics what I have read previously on META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC. own website. The following is a rationalization for why banks should seek out the underbanked.

CFSI’s mission is to transform the U.S. financial services marketplace to help underbanked consumers achieve financial prosperity. We seek to improve the quality and quantity of financial products and services, better shape them to the needs and desires of underbanked customers, and expand effective savings and asset acquisition opportunities. We believe that addressing the needs of the underbanked consumers as a market will deliver broad, long-term change throughout the financial services landscape by creating mutual benefit for both the underbanked consumer and the companies that serve them. To do this, we work with organizations and institutions in industry, government, and the nonprofit sector.

The Center has developed a variety of programs and activities to promote and enhance underbanked strategy and practice. It provides funding for innovative solutions, connects potential partners, offers platforms for testing products and services, and identifies, develops and distributes authoritative information on how to respond to the needs of the underbanked profitably and responsibly.

Why “underbanked”?

CFSI uses the term “underbanked” or “underserved” to describe the consumers served by its initiatives. This is a large, diverse population, with significant economic power and potential. Many of these consumers have both traditional and non-tradition financial services relationships, or previously had such relationships. The one common denominator they all share is that their financial needs are not currently fully met; they do not have access to the products and services that could put them on the road to prosperity. [And how do you intend to meet them? I mean really meet them???]

Focus on the Consumer

Key to achieving our mission is a deep understanding of the financial attitudes, needs, and behaviors of all consumers, particularly low and moderate income individuals. [META BANK has sought out the underbanked only to use them to make a bigger profit for themselves and very quickly. This is nothing noble or praiseworthy.]

CFSI undertakes a number of activities to listen to, know about, and learn from consumers, including: investing in innovative for and nonprofit organizations, participating on the US Financial Diaries project which seeks to better understand the financial lives of families living in low-income communities, conducting the 2008 Underbanked Consumer Study, creating the video series: Spotlight on Innovation, and engaging in selected consulting projects. CFSI uses this consumer knowledge to inform industry, government, and nonprofit audiences on how to best reach and serve the financially underserved.

[The following CFSI information also mimics what is found on the pages of  META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC. own website/s. FOCUS ON THE CONSUMER may be in response to this blog and the numerous consumer complaints about how we, as consumers, have been treated by META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC.  over the years.
As a former customer/consumer of META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC., I was lied to, my own cash money was held from me when I needed it the most and their customer service representatives tried to push the blame around, but never sought to find a real solution nor did they address my concerns when I asked them for assistance.
META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC.  were some of the founding members of the Network Branded Prepaid Card Association. John Hagy, the Chief Legal Counsel of  Meta Payment Systems is on the Board of Directors of the NBPCA.
The NBPCA was created as a non-profit organization. META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC. and the NBPCA were the largest donors to the US Congress and the US House of Representatives as they advocated for their NBPCA. 
META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC.  has previously boasted on their websites that they are the largest provider in the USA ( perhaps the world) of prepaid cards. 
The prepaid cards are everywhere now.
Prepaid cards are big money makers for banks such as META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC. … Customers/consumers give them cash money upon which the bank earns interest without having to pay the lenders any interest.
Sometimes added fees are charged for allowing customers to put their cash money on these cards. Customers/consumers have complained that once they have given their own cash money to banks like META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC.  that when they have gone to use their prepaid card, the bank will not allow them to spend their own money.
I recently observed that a customer was trying to pay for gas and that his prepaid card was turned down.
The clerk, who must have seen this frequently, was able to tell the very surprised customer all of the many reasons she had heard for why prepaid debit cards sometimes just don’t work.
When customers buy the prepaid cards they are told that the cards are safer than using cash, but this is very misleading and it is just a form of publicity to get the customer to opt into buying a prepaid debit card.

The problem of not having access to his own money was a form of what had happened to me; the same  problem still exists.

Why hasn’t this been corrected for consumers???

This indicates to me that META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC. , CFSI which I believe may be yet another creation of META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC.  and the NBPCA which was in great part formed by META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC.  are actually one in the same.
Sure they may have different names and different by-laws. NBPCA was created as a non-profit organization not to actually serve the poor and the needy, but to find legal ways to take advantage of them. The NBPCA was largely created by META BANK; it appears that CFSI is also created by META BANK.

I can’t trust META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC. 

I cannot see anything noble in any of these organizations. There is no real action plan presented

They all seem like a lot of puffery and self-congratulatory insiders clubs that don’t actually reflect customers real need nor do they actually address customers expressed, verbally and loudly expressed complaints about how we have been treated by META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC.  in the past.
Here is the CFSI information and it reads just like it came straight from one of the META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC.  publicity sites:

The Center for Financial Services Innovation, the nation’s leading authority on financial services for the underbanked marketplace, provides consulting services. Through its consulting offerings, CFSI works with organizations to design, develop, launch, and grow high quality products and services that improve the lives of underserved consumers while delivering positive results to the bottom line.

[This is what META BANK advertises that they do? Is this a new name fore META BANK?]

CFSI works to harness broad, long-term change throughout the financial services landscape by creating mutual benefit for both the underbanked consumer and the companies that serve them.

[How? What is different here from what Meta Bank promises, albeit as idle and empty promises on their own website?]

Through CFSI’s consulting work, clients benefit not just from partnership with the leader in this space, but also from a shared commitment to success that far outlasts the duration of any single engagement.

CFSI is a Market Leader

[ This terminology mimics what I have read previously on META Bank’s website]

Through engaging CFSI Consulting, companies benefit from the insight, connections, and credibility of an experienced team.
Defined Focus – focused exclusively on underbanked financial services, CFSI Consulting offers unrivaled domain expertise.
Mission-driven Approach – CFSI Consulting is committed to the long-term, measurable success of client organizations offering quality, sustainable financial services to the underbanked.

Specialized Expertise and Intelligence

– CFSI has an extensive research function, generating unique and proprietary insights on the market, products and consumers, and providing valuable insights from strategy development to market execution.

[ Again , this is just like the publicity found on META BANK’s own website. Is this also META BANK but with yet a new name?]

CFSI’s Consulting Experience

[ These all sound like what META BANK promises to do. Is CFSI also a part of META BANK etc.?]

With experiences spanning from enterprise strategy definition to working in the trenches launching new products, CFSI Consulting has a track record of serving a diverse client base at many levels.

Top card issuer and retail bank – engaged CFSI to refine an enterprising underbanked strategy and advance efforts within target business lines.

Top five retail bank – turned to CFSI for advice as the bank was reengineering its deposit product suite following overdraft rule changes.

Global financial services technology firm – relied on CFSI to identify market opportunities and existing technology to allow its clients to offer innovative credit products.[ META BANK failed the world in Dubai!!!]

Growing prepaid provider – retained CFSI to design a new product combining small dollar loans and savings.

Prepaid issuer – hired CFSI to develop its infrastructure to ensure its services delivered positive results for underbanked consumers while driving financial returns to their company.

Nonprofit organization – secured CFSI’s services to integrate a financial capability framework into their existing programs for children and families.

[ META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC. on their own website has indicated that this is exactly what they do. Is CFSI META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC. but with another name?]

Tailored Consulting

[ Again very similar to wording found on META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC. own website…. This sure appears to be META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC. but with a new name.]

CFSI Consulting engagements are designed around specific goals and opportunities. Consulting engagements may be limited to specific phases of the business lifecycle or may be organized to support clients from strategy planning through market execution.

Strategic Planning

The underbanked marketplace is a dynamic environment requiring careful strategy planning.

[ I am very uncomfortable with this focus by this group given their real history, not the one they post on their own webpage.]

CFSI Consulting helps to identify strategies and tactics that have maximum impact—both to an organizations’’ bottom line and the consumers served.
Enterprise strategy definition –Significant opportunity exists for different firms to engage the underbanked market, but defining a strategy that spans multiple silos and rallies internal champions may be difficult. Through a 360-degree view of the marketplace and excellent facilitation skills, CFSI Consulting brings senior leadership together to define, evaluate, and lay plans to execute an underbanked strategy spanning multiple lines of business.

Business strategy definition –Significant opportunity exists in serving the underbanked market. CFSI helps businesses and nonprofits identify opportunities to bring high quality financial services to the underbanked marketplace, facilitates business strategy planning, and leverages deep industry insight to quantify impact.

Industry insights –CFSI Consulting clients benefit from a deeper understanding of the market, key players, and complexities. With a 360 degree view of the underbanked financial services marketplace, CFSI shares deep domain expertise with clients wanting to enter or expand their market presence.

Custom research –CFSI has extensive experience as a researcher, as a commissioner of research, and advising clients on their own research projects. Through leveraging our proprietary research products, sourcing field research, or working with established research providers, CFSI helps clients get the most out of planned market research activities.

Product Design and Reach

Implementing products designed for the underbanked market can be a challenge. Product structures and providers are varied. CFSI guides organizations large and small through the steps necessary to bring to market products that are both sustainable and high quality.

Product best practices –What attributes define not just sustainable, but also high quality? CFSI is authoring a framework of clear measures of quality in serving underserved consumers. CFSI helps organizations design products and services that actualize this framework, having helped multiple organizations build and modify product offerings to be closer in line with standards for high quality.

Product design and evaluation –What features will be critical for success? Why hasn’t this product taken off like expected? Through applying knowledge of the underbanked consumer, product financials, and marketplace dynamics, CFSI guides organizations through designing new offerings and evaluating existing offerings to ensure that financial products—and the way they are delivered—meet high standards both for the organization and the consumer.

Landscape analysis –Where do consumers turn today? CFSI concisely summarizes the market landscape in which an organization does—or hopes to do—business. Through understanding major players, product structures, distribution strategies, and consumer preferences, organizations are better positioned to competitively differentiate their offerings and fully understand marketplace dynamics.

[So where are the real answers?  This sounds far too much like the strategy plans used by META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC. over the years. There isn’t any change being presented here!!!!!!

It is so similar to what META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC. promises and has promised that it appears that it is META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC. or heavily influenced by META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC…

.. I find it difficult to be able to trust CFSI in part because of their focus on the underbanked.

I do not view this as a noble and self-less venture to benefit humanity. 

META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC. has been driven by greed and a need to make exorbitant profits for their CEO’s…. nothing new is really being presented here…

.. THis is just empty words with no real meaning. There is no action plan!!!!!]

Environmental scan –As exciting and rewarding as the underbanked financial services marketplace is, it is critical to understand the larger environment in which products and services for the underbanked will operate. The environmental scan provides the insights needed to take these challenges into account. Through details on current hot-button issues, changes in the regulatory landscape, and an overview of successful and unsuccessful product introductions, organizations are well-equipped to consider messaging, missteps, and market dynamics as they introduce products to market.

[ I am not convinced that this is actually addressing consumers’ real needs.]

Execution [That is the word they used not mine!!!]

CFSI provides expert resources to clients to complement their own teams, making sure to select the right partners and ensuring adequate staffing and plans to successfully launch a product. Working alongside our consulting clients, teams from CFSI not only have the background needed for a quality deliverable, but also have a shared commitment to a projects’ long-term success.
Industry introductions –Through the vast network of organizations that engage with CFSI, clients often turn to CFSI for introductions to industry innovators. CFSI makes connections happen by helping clients to better understand similar past experiences, speak with people who have decided on a slightly different path, and ultimately gather evidence needed to make a business case even stronger.

Supplier matching –Underlying many successful market innovations are technology providers or other companies that enable delivery of high quality product. Selecting—or even finding—providers that make good partners is fraught with difficulty. CFSI provides insight on vendor capabilities and their products and helps clients evaluate potential partners.
Impact analysis and evaluation –Some clients have already launched a product to market, and may be able to measure revenue or number of clients, but are unable to detect what real impact the product is having on consumers lives. CFSI helps organizations understand best practices and ways to measure impact and outcomes of financial products and services. Whether this is critical to measure given organizational mission, to justify return on investment, or to better understand customers, having solid plans for measuring the usage and impact of financial products is critical to success in the underbanked marketplace.

Project management [ Or taking over control of the partner company for their own benefit???]

CFSI provides an extra set of hands when clients need to outsource market research, execute an RFP process, or require project management for implementing financial services products, and offers expert resources and staff willing to roll up their sleeves and work as part of the team.

[META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC. has offered similar services over the years.

What is here appears to be the same thing that META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC. has been doing for years and years. 

META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC. was/were taking advantage of the most economically vulnerable people in society.

What I see being offered here by CFSI seems to be an expansion of what consumers have complained about over the years.

AND, We are tired of being taken advantage of as consumers. Telling us that this program serves consumers or  is actually serving consumers; is just more empty promises and phrasing that sounds real pretty…. Please spare us all from this kind of garbage… We are not amused!!!]

CFSI retains control over its ultimate agenda, its research and the various public positions it may take. Consulting clients have no ability to set or influence our independently derived policy agenda and activities. CFSI will not accept consulting projects with clients who seek this as an outcome of the engagement. For more information, please contact Kimberly Gartner, Vice President, Advisory Services

[META PAYMENT SYSTEMS, META BANK, META FINANCIAL GROUP, INC. or CFSI in the italicized print just negated all that they said they would do above so what CFSI has just stated is only air passing…. like gas… it stinks and it is a waste of talent.

What is worse is that no changes have been made and there isn’t any kind of an understanding of what it means to serve humanity.

There is no real action plan mentioned here that explains how the consumers will benefit from anything….. This is nothing but puffery!!!]

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