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Viasat sees instant growth with a flexible payments approach

Inside the global communication company’s journey to seamless payments with Adyen for Platforms.

August 2, 2021
 ·  4 minutes
Viasat logo over a photo of space with satellite

For decades,Viasat, Inc.has been on a mission to connect the world. A leader in high-speed satellite broadband and communications, the company delivers high-quality connectivity and communications services and technology to consumers, businesses, governments, and militaries around the world.

Looking to simplify its payments infrastructure without sacrificing global expansion, Viasat choseAdyen for Platforms. Since switching to the newpayment platform, Viasat has seen a lift in authorization rates by approximately three percent.

We spoke with Bill Paynter, Senior Director - Billing & Payments, to learn more about the central role payments play in Viasat’s platform ecosystem and how they’ve navigated growth alongside fast-changing customer expectations.

Highlight of Viasat and Adyen partnership

Last year was highly unpredictable. How has Viasat navigated it?

Paynter:2020 was an extraordinarily challenging and difficult year as the COVID-19 pandemic put unforeseen pressure on how people, businesses, and enterprises communicated and collaborated, globally. Yet, despite the immense challenges the pandemic posed, Viasat was able to execute well. We stabilized our business by implementing rapid actions and incorporating new systems and technologies that could help us adjust our go-to-market strategy and cost structures.

In working with Adyen during this time period, we were able to ramp up parts of our business quickly, while at the same time ensure we were able to react to market dynamics across other parts of our business. Adyen was able to manage our volume change requests – whether from our airline or residential customers – in a flexible, seamless manner.

“For our consumer and small business facing business lines, payment plays a central role in the platform ecosystem. We want our customers to love using our service and we want to make it convenient for them to do so.”

Bill PaynterSenior Director - Billing & Payments, Viasat

What kind of opportunities are opening up, now that you have Adyen?

Paynter:Adyen has provided enhanced flexibility – which has given us an opportunity to better support our customers – from retail in-flight connectivity customers to our Community Internet shared wifi hotspot customers living in some of the hardest-to-connect locations in the world.

We selected Adyen as a partner because they will enable us to scale as our business grows, both into new vertical markets and geographies, while providing various payment programs to our customers. For example, we wanted a partner that could natively support our ability to do business as a ‘merchant of record’ versus the marketplace or payfac model that some of our airline customers may be interested in. Adyen provides a platform that can support both.

Ultimately, we’re expanding our market opportunities globally and Adyen will help us support the needs of our growing customer base with payments experiences that make the most sense for that market.

Close up of a satellite in space

How has the payments experience improved for your customers with Adyen for Platforms?

Paynter:We recently deployed Adyen to our US residential fixed broadband customers and initial feedback in the interactions are positive. The customer experience has changed for the better.

At the same time, we’ve begun to implement the new payment structure with our airline customers, and that has also generated a more positive experience now that we’ve launched PayPal and Apple Pay through Adyen. We’re working on bringing Google Pay into the payment ecosystem. By virtue of having those wallet-type services, customers can now easily go on their phone and complete their purchase without having to reach for a credit card. The experience has changed 180-degrees to be very consumer-driven.

Overall, the shift towards touchless payment methods and enhanced ecommerce platforms has created a ‘stickiness’ factor, which is providing more engaging ecommerce interactions.

“The adoption of our app is up 2x from what it was in the legacy back office. The number of new orders (new residential service for the first time) on our ecommerce platform is up 10x. We’re starting to push a digital-first approach.”

Bill PaynterSenior Director - Billing & Payments, Viasat
Close up of a rocket in a loading area

How has your relationship to payments changed as a result?

Paynter:As we work with more customers in more countries using more and varying payment methods, we must expand and evolve our thinking and actions around customer- and payment-centricity. We recognize ease in payments play an important role in the overall customer experience and will continue to make adjustments in the overall process, as needed, to best respond to customer needs.

“We found Adyen accepts more types of payments than anyone else on the planet, in more places than anyone else on the planet. In terms of partners, it makes sense.”

Bill PaynterSenior Director - Billing & Payments, Viasat

What’s Viasat launching next?

Paynter:We’re going to be launching our ViaSat-3 global constellation, which consists of three ultra-high capacity satellites that will provide global broadband coverage. This constellation opens up a variety of possibilities in the business-to-business, consumer, and mobility markets, where we can connect planes, cars, buses, trains, maritime vessels, RV, and more.

We’ll be launching in hundreds of countries over the next few years, which will open up new merchant accounts and more local payment methods. That’s why we looked to Adyen. They offer the payment methods and have the local payments knowledge and local expertise we need to ensure the correct payment methods are leveraged appropriately in each country we enter.

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