Visa Annual Cardholder Expenditure Exceeds €1trillion on Debit Cards for the
First Time in Europe
*16% growth in European e-commerce as online Visa spending tops €200bn for
the first time
*UK e-commerce now represents a quarter of all spend on a Visa card
*Mass rollout of V.me by Visa digital wallet in 2013, giving UK cardholders
access to secure, simple and fast online payments through their own bank
LONDON -- January 15, 2013
Annual spend on Visa debit cards across Europe has exceeded €1trillion (€1.02
tn) for the first time. The figure represents an annual increase of 8.8%,
reports payments technology company Visa Europe, which today announces its
annual results for the year ending 30 September 2012.
Despite the challenging economic climate, total spend by Visa cardholders grew
by 8.0% to €1.3 trillion. This was underpinned by a 16% growth in e-commerce,
the fastest growing part of the Visa Europe business. Online spending on Visa
cards in Europe topped €200 billion (€202bn) for the first time and accounts
for more than 20% of Visa Europe’s processed business. €1 in every €6.75 spent
in Europe is on a Visa card, a figure that rises to £1 in every £3 in the UK.
Growth was also strong in other core areas of the Visa Europe business, with
spending on commercial cards increasing by 17.6% and on prepaid cards by
In the UK, total spend increased by 6.1% to £407bn with spend on debit cards
increasing by 7.1% to £360bn. E-commerce grew by 11.5% to £96bn, representing
almost a quarter of total spend.
As a membership organisation, Visa Europe operates a high volume, low cost
business model that provides services to its members. For the second year
running, Visa Europe revenues exceeded €1billion (€1.11bn) and the company
achieved a pre-tax surplus of €260 million that will be reinvested into the
business and to improve capital and reserves.
Visa Europe has invested over €1billion in its technology and infrastructure
over the past six years, building a robust and secure European payments
platform from which to deliver the next generation of payment technologies.
The company continues to deliver unparalleled payments safety for consumers,
merchants and retailers, with its fraud to sales ratio at an all-time low for
the second year running (Europe-wide: 0.04%; UK 0.05%).
2013 will see the rollout of V.me by Visa, Visa’s first integrated digital
wallet, in the UK, France and Spain. In the UK, banks representing 80% of all
consumers are already committed, while by 2020, Visa Europe believes that
one-third of all European consumers will be using the V.me wallet.
V.me by Visa allows consumers to complete online transactions with just one
click after login through the internet browser on their smart phones, tablets,
PCs or laptops, using cards from multiple providers. V.me is exceptionally
secure, shielding customers’ card details from online merchants and supported
by multiple layers of Visa security technology. The V.me service will continue
to evolve to incorporate other Visa payment technologies, including
contactless transactions at the point of sale and person-to-person payments.
2013 will also see the continued rollout of contactless payments for card and
mobile devices. Contactless transactions in Europe quadrupled in 2012 and Visa
Europe expects to repeat this growth in 2013. Across Europe, in 2013, there
will be 40 issuers offering mobile contactless payment services to consumers
and by the end of 2013 around 80 types of smartphone will be certified by Visa
to carry out contactless payments
Peter Ayliffe, Chief Executive, Visa Europe said:
“Visa Europe has performed strongly in the past year despite tough economic
conditions, demonstrating the continued resilience of our business.
“Debit, which accounts for almost 80% of Visa card spending in Europe,
continues to grow strongly while e-commerce has become the fastest growing
part of our business and is set to grow further as the market continues to
“We have benefited from our investment in technology and security, which not
only helped us deliver 100% processing availability and record low levels of
fraud in 2012, but also enabled us to showcase mobile contactless payments at
the London Olympics. This investment also underpins the rollout of new payment
technologies in 2013.
“As we continue to see the explosive adoption of mobile devices, our priority
in 2013 is to give consumers faster, safer mobile ways to pay.
“The past six years have been about preparing and building the European
payments infrastructure to support European commerce and the delivery of new
payment technologies. The year ahead will see us putting mobile contactless
payments into consumers’ hands, and introducing digital wallets on a mass
scale for the first time.
“In the UK, where a quarter of all Visa card spend is online, banks
representing the vast majority of UK consumers are lined up to launch V.me in
2013, providing a faster, simpler and safer way to pay online.”
NOTES TO EDITORS
About Visa Europe
Visa Europe is a payments technology business owned and operated by member
banks and other payment service providers from 36 countries across Europe.
Visa Europe works at the forefront of technology to create the services and
infrastructure which enable millions of European consumers, businesses and
governments to make electronic payments. It is not a credit card company,
almost 80% of its business is on debit cards, and its members are responsible
for issuing cards, signing up retailers and deciding cardholder and retailer
Visa Europe operates a high volume, low cost business model that provides
services to its members. Its surplus is reinvested into the business and used
to improve capital and reserves. In the last six years, Visa Europe has
invested over €1 billion in new technology and infrastructure.
Since 2004, Visa Europe has been independent of Visa Inc. and incorporated in
the UK, with an exclusive, irrevocable and perpetual licence in Europe. Both
companies work in partnership to enable global Visa payments. As a dedicated
European payment system Visa Europe is able to respond quickly to the specific
market needs of European banks and their customers - cardholders and retailers
- and to meet the European Commission’s objective to create a true internal
market for payments.
0207 297 1356
0207 413 3794
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