Net Element Releases Letter to Shareholders

Published

CEO highlights milestones in 2019 and focus for the year ahead 

MIAMI, FL, Jan. 30, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- via NEWMEDIAWIRE -- Net Element, Inc. (NASDAQ: NETE)(“Net Element” or the “Company”), a global technology and value-added solutions group that supports electronic payments acceptance in a multi-channel environment including point-of-sale (“POS”), today issues the following letter to shareholders from the Company’s chief executive officer, Oleg Firer:Dear Fellow Shareholders,The dynamic payments industry continued to evolve in 2019, global non-cash transactions and digital payment alternatives continued its leadership position over cash.  For us, 2019 was a year of continued organic growth in all business segments while we expanded our portfolio of software-as-a-service (SaaS) offerings focused on value-added payments solutions for small to medium size businesses and regional banks catering to financial technology companies.  Our full stack of proprietary payment platforms and value-added services differentiate us from competitors and positions us as a leading omni-channel payments acceptance solutions provider going into this new year.  We are pleased to report our achievements for 2019 and look forward to continued growth in 2020. Accomplishments:

  • Unified Payments was among the first companies to achieve self-regulatory certification from the Electronic Transactions Association
  • Launched multi-channel blockchain-powered payments application across multiple touch points including face-to-face via smart payment terminals and electronic commerce as well as via API.  
  • Launched Netevia In-App Payments Software Development Kit (SDK) for Internet of Things (“IoT”) devices, enabling application developers and hardware manufacturers to process payments within their consumer-facing applications.
  • Launched Blade, our proprietary, fully-automated, artificial intelligence (“AI”)-powered underwriting solution with predictive scoring.
  • Launched cryptocurrency payment acceptance for Aptito’s suite of POS solutions.
  • Launched Netevia Mastercard®, an exclusively-tailored business card for Unified Payments merchants. 
  • Launched Netevia Rewards, a card-linked loyalty rewards program. 
  • Launched merchant acquiring enablement services for small and regional banks in the US. 
  • Launched the Aptito global kiosk, multi-restaurant self-ordering kiosk solution for the online food delivery industry. 

Transaction Performance:

  • Achieved organic growth across all categories. 
  • Total transaction dollars processed during 2019 increased 12% to more than $3.7 billion compared to $3.3 billion in 2018.
  • Total transaction dollars processed geographically in North American and international markets in 2019 were $3.2 billion and $425 million, respectively.
  • North American segment transactions processed for 2019 increased 19% to more than 70 million, while international segment transactions processed  for 2019 decreased 12% to more than 36 million, due to consolidation and a shift in the business model.

Partnerships:

  • Aptito subsidiary entered into a channel partner agreement with HP Inc. for sales and support of its line of Android-based POS devices.
  • Unified Payments partnered with VIP Systems, enabling the Internet of Things (“IoT”) payments for the property management industry. This partnership gained traction with the addition of Hyde Beach House, a modern waterfront beach resort in Hollywood consisting of 342 units, as a client for Net Element’s fully integrated payment ecosystem, Netevia. 

Moving forward, exciting projects and disruptive technologies like blockchain and Internet of Things (“IoT”) will continue to provide us the opportunity for continued development of innovative payments solutions within the omni-channel payments strategy. We remain focused on reaching sustainable profitability for the Company, and expanding and monetizing value-added services around Netevia, our future-ready multi-channel payments platform.

As a significant shareholder and investor in Net Element, I am disappointed by the performance of our stock, which unfortunately does not reflect our business performance. We remain committed to maximizing value for our shareholders and will look for strategic opportunities to fulfill this mission.On behalf of our entire team, I want to personally thank all of you for your continued support.Sincerely,Oleg FirerExecutive Chairman Chief Executive OfficerNet Element, Inc.

About Net ElementNet Element, Inc. (NASDAQ: NETE) operates a payments-as-a-service transactional and value-added services platform for small to medium enterprise ("SME") in the U.S. and selected emerging markets. In the U.S., the Company aims to grow transactional revenue by innovating SME productivity services using various technology solutions and Aptito, our cloud-based, restaurant and retail point-of-sale solution. Internationally, Net Element's strategy is to leverage its omni-channel platform to deliver flexible offerings to emerging markets with diverse banking, regulatory and demographic conditions. Net Element was ranked as one of the fastest growing companies in North America on Deloitte's 2017 and 2018 Technology Fast 500™. In 2017 we were recognized by South Florida Business Journal as one of 2016's fastest-growing technology companies. Further information is available at www.NetElement.com.

Forward-Looking StatementsSecurities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Any statements contained in this press release that are not statements of historical fact may be deemed forward-looking statements. Words such as "continue," "will," "may," "could," "should," "expect," "expected," "plans," "intend," "anticipate," "believe," "estimate," "predict," "potential," and similar expressions are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. All forward-looking statements involve significant risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in the forward-looking statements, many of which are generally outside the control of Net Element and are difficult to predict. An example of such risk and uncertainty is whether the Company will be successful in developing additional innovative payments solutions in the future;  whether  blockchain and Internet of Things (“IoT”) technologies will play a factor in the development of other payments solutions, whether the Company will be successful in expanding and monetizing value-added services around Netevia; whether the Company will find  strategic opportunities, whether the Company will experience continued growth in 2020 and whether the Company will reach profitability.  Additional examples of such risks and uncertainties include but are not limited to (i) Net Element's ability (or inability) to obtain additional financing in sufficient amounts or on acceptable terms when needed; (ii) Net Element's ability to maintain existing, and secure additional, contracts with users of its payment processing services; (iii) Net Element's ability to successfully expand in existing markets and enter new markets; (iv) Net Element's ability to successfully manage and integrate any acquisitions of businesses, solutions or technologies; (v) unanticipated operating costs, transaction costs and actual or contingent liabilities; (vi) the ability to attract and retain qualified employees and key personnel; (vii) adverse effects of increased competition on Net Element's business; (viii) changes in government licensing and regulation that may adversely affect Net Element's business; (ix) the risk that changes in consumer behavior could adversely affect Net Element's business; (x) Net Element's ability to protect its intellectual property; (xi) local, industry and general business and economic conditions; and (xii) adverse effects of potentially deteriorating U.S.-Russia relations, including, without limitation, over a conflict related to Ukraine, including a risk of further U.S. government sanctions or other legal restrictions on U.S. businesses doing business in Russia. Additional factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in the forward-looking statements can be found in the most recent annual report on Form 10-K, quarterly reports on Form 10-Q and current reports on Form 8-K filed by Net Element with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Net Element anticipates that subsequent events and developments may cause its plans, intentions and expectations to change. Net Element assumes no obligation, and it specifically disclaims any intention or obligation, to update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as expressly required by law.

Contact:Net Element, Inc.+1 (786) 923-0502www.NetElement.comMedia@NetElement.com

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