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Contactless market to “explode” in Europe this year

Paul Withers
March 9, 2016

Visa Europe director claims size will at least double as adoption and availability expands

Visa has predicted that the contactless payments market will double in value in Europe this year, “hitting a tipping point” as services on mobile devices drives further adoption.

Last year, the financial services giant said customers spent €21.4 billion via contactless means in Europe, while in the 12 months to September 30, there were 1.7 billion contactless payments.

In 2015, there were 152 million contactless cards used across three million contactless terminals, with the average spend being €13. Globally, there were 411 million registered Mobile Money users.

Visa Europe executive director of product development Sandra Alzetta (pictured) claimed the mobile contactless payments market will “explode” on the continent this year as more banks, retail outlets and handset manufacturers continue to make it available across multiple devices and thus increase awareness.

Huge market deployment
“This year we will see a huge amount of market deployment. We’re on the cusp of something big here – it is hitting a tipping point and will explode.

“The contactless market will at least double in Europe this year. Mobile has only made up a small portion of the market, but this will become more significant in 2016.

Growth last year was aided by the global launch of Apple Pay and Samsung Pay, with the latter set to hit the UK this summer.

Visa has enabled its payments on both. Between them, the two manufacturers accounted for more than 40 per cent of the global smartphone market in Q4.

In the UK, Visa has mobile contactless payment partnerships with retailers including McDonald’s, Transport for London (TfL), Pret A Manger, EAT, Costa and Tesco.

Contactless cards are currently used for around one in every 10 payments in London alone and by 2020, half of all transactions by Londoners will be made on their mobile device.

“The key is to simply make mobile contactless payment services available to consumers, and we are seeing evidence
of this. “

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