Danny Shader's newest project, PayNearMe, has an ambitious demographic: the quarter of the U.S. population without bank accounts or credit cards. His new cash-payment solution allows users to make remote transactions (for an Amazon purchase or Facebook credits, for example) by starting the transaction online and then taking a printed receipt to a nearby 7-11 to complete the exchange by paying in cash. The 7-11 cashier essentially acts as an ATM-like point-of-connection between the consumer and the business, and the whole exchange is handled in cash.
Approximately 25% of the U.S. population is unbanked, meaning they do not have a bank account or credit card, and the payment solution is being used for everything from purchasing virtual goods and physical items to making loan repayments.
Danny clarified in the interview that virtual goods is only a very miniscule part of the whole PayNearMe business, which is handling more loan repayments than virtual goods transactions.
He also drew a clearer outline of who PayNearMe is really targeting. There are, of course, the households without bank accounts or credit cards, for whom a cash payment solution is particularly relevant, but then there are also those who have maxed out their credit cards or just want to avoid using them, those who want more private online transactions (and not just for buying porn, Danny clarified), and then teen Internet users who don't have bank accounts but still want to purchase virtual goods or Facebook credits.
While Danny wouldn't reveal exactly how many transactions have been completed using PayNearMe, he did say that the number is growing approximately 10-15% per week.