by Kevin Bliss
On October 8, 2019, a corporate reorganization listed Aventiv Technologies as the parent company of Securus Technologies, Inc., JPay and AllPaid (formerly known as GovPayNet). Securus has a long history of providing prison and jail phone services, and price gouging prisoners and their families with high rates. JPay has the same history with respect to money transfer services and electronic tablets provided to prisoners.
A spokesperson for Aventiv said the businesses will work together to provide innovative technologies and expand their products and services to a broader customer base.
On October 10, Aventiv issued a statement that described its new corporate structure as head of a conglomeration of companies offering a variety of services, mainly to corrections agencies.
“We are transforming the company at every level,” said CEO Robert Pickens. “Mindful of both our customers and our critics, we are working to ensure that our core communication services are more affordable, responsive and attuned to the needs of our customers, including corrections agencies, incarcerated individuals, and their families and friends. At the same time, we are developing innovative technology products and services that will better serve customers and consumers, and have broader application beyond the corrections marketplace.”
Aventiv’s statement said Securus will continue to provide communication, security, education, entertainment and reentry services. It also plans to unveil its sixth generation tablet in 2020, which boasts state-of-the-art security, a slimmer design and more capacity.
JPay will continue to provide money transfers, release debit cards, and probation and parole payment services. The company is also releasing a financial management tool to help prisoners manage their funds and better prepare for release.
AllPaid handles government money transfers outside the corrections environment. It plans to release a redesigned, user-friendly platform to help make its services a better experience.
The announcement by Aventiv came after a push by the nonprofit organization Worth Rises to urge public pension funds to stop investing in Platinum Equity, the parent company of Aventiv. [See: PLN, July 2018, p.20; Oct. 2017, p.48].
Bianca Tylek, founder of Worth Rises, stated: “Platinum Equity is using a classic private equity tactic to distance itself from the negative press related to Securus: (1) they’re creating a corporate structure that separates them from Securus, (2) rebranding to avoid having to list Securus on their website as [a] portfolio company and lessen association, and (3) creating a false equivalency between Securus, JPay, and other smaller but less controversial business segments. Aventiv is merely a Securus rebrand and desperate attempt at dealing with the pressure they’ve been under recently.”
Sources: bizjournals.com, prnewswire.com, aventiv.com
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