An executive from Visa has reported that EM cards aren’t doomed due to the rise of mobile payments.
The head of Visa Inc.’s non-U.S. operations has released a statement while in Singapore, saying that there is still a future in plastic credit cards, despite the growth and aggressive promotion of mobile payments and their various platforms.
Even though there has been a tremendous rise in the number of systems catering to smartphones – particularly in emerging markets such as India and Indonesia – the fact that these same nations are seeing rapid growth in their middle classes also indicates that there will continue to be a rising demand for traditional credit cards.
According to the group president for Asia Pacific, Central Europe, Middle East, and Africa, at Visa, Elizabeth Buse, those markets often contain individuals who want credit products that are rich in many features, especially in terms of a card. This is because they are individuals who do a lot of travelling and who often make a number of traditional online shopping purchases and “tend to be at the top of the pyramid.”
Buse went on to point out that there are also individuals living in more rural areas who are more likely to see mobile as an exclusive way to access financial services, and that there will also be individuals who are “in between” and will require both types of product or a hybrid. She said that “You already see some of that in India today.”
There are many rapidly growing markets – particularly Indonesia – where Visa wants greater penetration.
The card and mobile payment systems company, which is headquartered in the United States, is having its first board meeting in a country other than the United States on Wednesday and Thursday. It will be held in Singapore, a city-state which is the largest Visa location outside of the United States. There are 900 people employed by Visa in Singapore out of a global staff base of 8,000 people.
“There’s a ton of cash here,” said Buse, when speaking about Asia.
She said that “the way that we go after it would be different to the way we’d go after it in the U.S. or even Australia and that’s where innovation comes in.” She added that this will be vital as many people will be able to use it to spend when they have no other traditional banking system – mobile payments or otherwise – available.