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Brandes Elitch

Brandes Elitch is Director of Partner Acquisition for CrossCheck Inc. A certified cash manager and accredited ACH professional, he garnered a Master of Business Administration from New York University and a Juris Doctor from Santa Clara University.

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Recent Posts

Will Merchants Need to Accept Facebook’s New Libra Cryptocurrency?

Posted by Brandes Elitch on Wed, Jun 26, 2019 @ 08:45 AM

Recently Facebook made a big announcement. They are launching their own currency, hoping to go live in the first half of 2020. Actually, it is a cryptocurrency called Libra. They are developing a digital wallet to take the currency, called Calibra.

Facebook says that their goal is to bring a new type of digital payment to anyone with a smartphone, which some people say is the functional equivalent of an online digital bank. You buy or cash out your Libra online or at a local exchange point, like a grocery store. You spend it using interoperable third-party wallet apps, or the Calibra wallet that is built into WhatsApp, Messenger, and its own app. The idea is that sending money to friends or paying for something at a merchant is just as easy as sending them a Facebook message.

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Tags: CrossCheck

Furniture Stores Can Increase Sales by Making Houses into Homes

Posted by Brandes Elitch on Wed, Jun 12, 2019 @ 11:45 AM

Buying a house or condo is the most important financial decision that most of us will ever make. It takes a special degree of commitment, dedication, savings, financial expertise … and luck … to reach that level of achievement. Unfortunately, only about 64 percent of American families currently own homes.

First-time home owners have a whole new list of things to deal with — mortgage payments, property taxes, home insurance, yard work, and who knows what else! Owning a home is not for everyone, but for many people, it is a lifelong dream.

When people buy their first house, they are typically starting with a blank interior canvas. Their goal is to “make a house a home.”

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Tags: Home Furnishings

Electronic Payments from Start to Fintech at TRANSACT 2019: pt 4

Posted by Brandes Elitch on Mon, Jun 03, 2019 @ 10:00 AM

“Today is the slowest technology will be in our lifetime,” said Xerox President and COO Steve Bandrowczak in a Corporate Board Member article. “The pace of change will accelerate and leadership skills and leading through change are going to create a tremendous amount of winners and losers.”

His observation about speed should hold true in places where electricity and internet connections are commonplace while his insights on leadership sound like a corporate application of natural selection.

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Tags: Electronic Transactions Association (ETA), Independent Sales Organization (ISO)

Electronic Payments from Start to Fintech at TRANSACT 2019: pt 3

Posted by Brandes Elitch on Wed, May 29, 2019 @ 01:54 PM

Did you ever wonder what happens when you use your credit card at a merchant to buy goods or services? If you’re like most people, you probably never give these type of electronic payments a second thought. You just know that everything happens magically and instantly as you insert your chip in the reader or swipe the card, or enter the card information into the merchant’s online payment gateway.

The next time you see it is when you get the bill from your card issuing bank a few weeks later. There is a lot going on behind the scenes, and it is pretty interesting how it all works. Here is a high level view of that process, but first a little background.

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Tags: Electronic Transactions Association (ETA)

What are the Benefits of Using Auto Dealer Management Systems? Pt 2

Posted by Brandes Elitch on Mon, Apr 29, 2019 @ 01:55 PM

In our last column, we talked about the challenges and intricacies of being a car dealer, and along those lines, why a car dealer would need a reliable and robust Dealer Management System (DMS).

The car retailing business is unique. It has a lot of moving parts and there is a lot of money flowing through it every week. The owners and managers need to stay on top of the numbers that drive the business every day, not once a month. The DMS is a kind of supercharged general ledger accounting system that addresses the unique needs of a car dealer. Consequently, you do not want to change DMS or providers lightly; it is a big commitment to learn how to use a DMS and is usually a long-term commitment.

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Tags: Auto Dealerships

What Is the Future of Automotive Retailing for New Car Dealers?

Posted by Brandes Elitch on Mon, Apr 22, 2019 @ 01:56 PM

Today I heard another comment about the future of automotive retailing from someone who is not in the industry, but considers themselves fully qualified to predict the future. Predicting is a tricky business, particularly about the future. In this case, his prediction was that new car dealers would go away, and be replaced by “test drive centers” where you can take a test drive after doing all your research online.

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Tags: Auto Dealerships

What are the Benefits of Using an Auto Dealer Management System? Pt 1

Posted by Brandes Elitch on Fri, Apr 12, 2019 @ 09:45 AM

Thinking of starting a car dealership? You’ll be in good company and want to launch the venture with the help of an auto dealer management system. This two-part series will explore the challenges and intricacies of being a new car dealership and why one would need a reliable and robust dealer management system (DMS). We begin with a description of the retail automotive space and related statistics.

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Tags: Brandes Elitch, Auto Dealerships

Merchant Cash Discounting, Surcharging and Convenience Fees

Posted by Brandes Elitch on Mon, Apr 01, 2019 @ 06:45 AM

There has been a lot of interest in merchant cash discounting and surcharging recently, and people seem to be confused about what is permissible and what is not. This brief overview begins with examples showing how cash discounting, surcharging and convenience fees affect merchants as well as consumers.

A consumer drives into a gas station and there is a sign showing two prices: one for cash and one for credit. When they use a credit card, they pay the higher price. This is cash discounting.

A consumer goes to a local merchant and there is a sign saying if they pay with a credit card, they will be charged an extra fee equal to what the merchant pays to have the transaction processed as a credit card sale. That is surcharging.

A consumer calls the city to pay a parking ticket. The city says they only accept cash or checks, but the consumer can call their payment processing company and pay over the phone with a credit card for an additional $12 fee. This is a convenience fee.

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Tags: Brandes Elitch

How to Succeed in Running Small Businesses

Posted by Brandes Elitch on Fri, Mar 29, 2019 @ 08:45 AM

One of the most famous books on running small businesses is called The E-Myth, which was written 30 years ago by Michael Gerber. He used to have an office just down the street from us here in Petaluma, but he has since moved to sunnier climes. The book sold 150,000 copies when it came out and Gerber was featured on many television talk shows. His successor book, The E-Myth Revisited, is one of the five top-selling business books of all time. It has been translated into 27 languages and is required reading in some MBA programs.

In a nutshell, Gerber says it’s a myth that most people who start small businesses are entrepreneurs, and also have tangible business skills.

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Tags: Small Business, Brandes Elitch

Driving Old Cars Helps Auto Repair Centers Turn a Profit

Posted by Brandes Elitch on Thu, Mar 28, 2019 @ 06:45 AM

A consumer just found their dream car and believe they got a good deal from one of the local auto dealerships. Isn’t this one of the big things in life? Of course it is.

Being a savvy shopper, this consumer knows the car depreciated 10 percent the instant they drove it off the car lot and that it will depreciate another 10 percent over the first year of ownership. They may also be aware that studies show it will lose about 10 percent of its value each year over the next four years.

If one does the math, this means that after five years, it is going to be worth about half or even 40 percent of the original sale price. Many people, including me, find this to be a scary statistic.

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Tags: Brandes Elitch, Auto Dealerships, Auto Repair