Visa sees person-to-person payments nearly double in emerging markets

Press Release   •   Oct 09, 2012 20:16 +08

SINGAPORE, 09 October 2012
Near-instant funds transfer capability and expanded distribution attract millions of users in Asia Pacific, Middle East, Africa and Eastern Europe to the new Visa Personal Payments platform.

Visa Inc.’s Personal Payments platform has seen strong year-on-year transaction growth of 89 per cent (September 2012 over September 2011) in Asia-Pacific, Middle-East, Africa and Eastern Europe. The platform, which enables consumers to send money directly to eligible Visa credit, debit or prepaid cards around the globe, is now available to an estimated 200 million consumers through 74 leading financial institutions in 18 countries. 
“We are excited by the exponential growth in Visa Personal Payments. While still a nascent part of our core business, this new platform has proven to be ideally suited for delivering simple and fast payment services through online and mobile channels,” said Ms Niki Manby, Head of Emerging Products, Asia-Pacific, Central Europe, Middle East and Africa (APCEMEA), Visa Inc.
“Visa Personal Payments’ momentum also reflects Visa’s commitment to developing customized solutions that address changing customer segments and needs. This is a real example of how a compelling innovation generates value for our clients and consumers in emerging markets.”
Since the launch of its near-instant funds transfer capability in Russia in February 2011, Visa Personal Payments has seen rapid adoption among financial institutions and payment service providers. Visa’s key partners include:

  • On the sending side, ICBC Bank in China; Standard Chartered Bank, Maybank  and OCBC Bank in Singapore; Alfa Bank, QIWI and Russian Standard Bank in Russia; UAE Exchange in the Middle-East,Taishin International Bank in Taiwan and ICICI Bank and, State Bank of India in India.
  • On the receiving side, over 400 issuers representing over 125 million Visa cards are enabled to receive near-instant personal payments.
  • Leading payment service providers such as Russia’s Cyberplat and South East Asia’s Enstage are partnered with Visa to offer turnkey Visa Personal Payments solutions to their clients.

Growth propelled by online and mobile channels
Importantly, while the majority of transactions are conducted online or through self-service kiosks, about 10 percent of transactions through the platform are now initiated from mobile devices. The average value of a Visa Personal Payment transaction is significantly higher than a traditional Visa purchase transaction, averaging US$325 for international and US$200 for domestic transactions, reflecting that users are increasingly comfortable with the platform. 
“In consumer research that we conducted in Singapore [1]; and Australia [2], speed and ease-of-use emerged as the top two drivers for any successful p2p solution,” said Ms Niki Manby. “As hundreds of participating financial institutions and millions of repeat users demonstrate, Visa Personal Payments is able to deliver on both those aspects.”
New Benefits for existing Visa cardholders 
Not only is Visa Personal Payments attracting new Visa users, but it also brings significant new benefits to existing Visa cardholders who can now receive payments to their Visa cards almost instantaneously, and without the need to visit a branch or agent location. This is particularly attractive for Visa debit and prepaid cardholders, both in developed and emerging markets where fast and convenient p2p solutions are increasingly relevant.

[1]Visa conducted research through workshop style groups and online surveys in Singapore to understand consumer behavior and attitudes towards P2P payments in Singapore. This entailed surveying 447 consumers (399 Singapore citizens; 48 PR and Expats), aged between 25-65. All consumers had an annual personal income of more than SGD $70,000, owned credit cards across a variety of brands, engaged in Internet or mobile banking and had made at least two domestic or overseas money transfers in the past 6 months. 

[2]Visa conducted research through an online survey in Australia to understand consumer behavior and attitudes towards P2P payments in Australia. This entailed surveying 807 consumers, aged between 25-59 and living in Sydney and Melbourne. All consumers had an annual personal income of more than SU $40,000, owned a credit or debit/ EFTPOS card and held their main transaction accounts at ANZ, Commonwealth, NAB or Westpac banks. Fieldwork was conducted from 16 – 21 March 2011

About Visa

Visa is a global payments technology company that connects consumers, businesses, financial institutions and governments in more than 200 countries and territories to fast, secure and reliable digital currency. Underpinning digital currency is one of the world’s most advanced processing networks—VisaNet—that is capable of handling more than 20,000 transaction messages a second, with fraud protection for consumers and guaranteed payment for merchants. Visa is not a bank, and does not issue cards, extend credit or set rates and fees for consumers. Visa’s innovations, however, enable its financial institution customers to offer consumers more choices: Pay now with debit, ahead of time with prepaid or later with credit products. For more information, visit