Merchant Payments Digest - 2nd Edition

The Merchant Payments Digest is a regular update from Oliver Wyman focusing on merchant-relevant payments topics. Our goal is to provide the latest updates in the payments landscape to help keep merchants apprised of the many developments in the rapidly shifting payments space. To have a discussion with Oliver Wyman on your payments issues and opportunities, please contact Beth Costa at

Oliver Wyman is a global leader in management consulting with offices in 50+ cities across nearly 30 countries. Our Payments practice works with constituents across the payments value chain to deliver insights with real impact, combining deep industry expertise with powerful consulting capabilities.



Transformational payments solutions:Worldpay announced that it will be the first to offer Quick Chip technology in the U.S., a new solution for chip card payment processing that reduces EMV chip transaction times to approximately three seconds. Quick Chip removes the need for chip card processing to receive the final amount, authorization and post-authorization while the chip card remains in terminal. Instead, once the card has been removed, Quick Chip uses the issuer’s online response to determine whether the transaction is approved or declined.

Source: Worldpay


Regulatory landscape:Republican leaders in the House of Representatives recently removed a provision within the Financial Choice Act that would have repealed the Durbin Amendment. This comes only three weeks after the House Financial Services Committee had voted 34-26 in favor of the Financial Choice Act with Durbin repeal as a provision. In light of this, the National Retail Federation is working to ensure that the Durbin repeal is not included in the final legislation of the Financial Choice Act by launching advertising campaigns targeting the districts of the congressmen who supported the repeal.

Source: Politico


Customers’ evolving expectations:Alipay stated in a recent interview that they are hoping to achieve “relevant ubiquity” in the North American market for its mobile wallet. For this reason, Alipay has opted to partner with First Data for distribution and use QR codes, which have wider merchant acceptance than NFC. The push to ubiquity is driven by the increase in Chinese tourists traveling abroad as well as the changing behavior of these tourists. Alipay recognizes that these tourists are no longer sticking just to tourist attractions but are customizing their experiences by shopping at a wide variety of locations.

Source: South China Morning Post (


Data:Google will begin using payment card transaction data to prove that its advertising programs are prompting purchasing behavior. Google will create a unique profile for each user, which in the past was based on records such as web search history, geographic location, data from Google-owned services such as YouTube and Gmail. The new use of payment card data allows Google to tie this web behavior to real purchasing decisions. While Google declined to disclose how the algorithm works, they noted that they are working with an external, undisclosed partner that has access to 70% of credit and debit transactions in the U.S.

Source: BBC


New providers:Apple has announced that it is launching its own P2P service which would allow iPhone and iPad users to send money digitally to other users. The new service will be automatically built into Apple’s iMessage systems after the release of iOS 11 in Fall 2017. In conjunction with the new P2P service, Apple also announced a new digital debit card, Apple Pay Cash, which will allow users to make purchases through Apple Pay using any funds received through the P2P money transfer service.

Source: Recode


  • United Airlines announced the launch of MileagePlus GO Visa Prepaid Card, the first prepaid card offering miles-based rewards for qualifying purchases, in partnership with Netspend, a prepaid card provider
    • The card, launching in summer 2017, will allow consumers to redeem miles through United Airline’s United MileagePlus loyalty program

    • The card will be branded with a Visa logo and will be issued by Republic Bank. It will also offer some of the same features as other payment cards such as FDIC-insured funds and electronic alerts

Source: Business Wire (


  • WEX, a provider of corporate payment solutions, announced that it has signed two significant agreements with Chevron to expand their respective market shares via Chevron’s fuel cards:
    • Chevron has selected WEX to develop, support and manage a fuel card processing platform for Chevron in 5 countries: Singapore, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Thailand and the PhilippinesThe move is the latest signal of intent by Ant Financial to become a leading power-broker in the global payments industry. Recently the firm raised its offer for US-based money transfer service MoneyGram to $1.2 billion
    • The second agreement is a contract for WEX to process Chevron’s fuel cards over the next 10 years

Source: Business Wire (



  • Moneygram shareholders have now approved the $1.2 billion Ant Financial acquisition of Moneygram, with 97 percent of shareholders giving the nod
    • The primary goal of the acquisition, according to Alex Holmes, Moneygram’s CEO, is to “invest in Moneygram’s global money transfer business” while synergistically leveraging Ant’s mobile financial network
    • For consumers, this would mean that Moneygram’s physical network would support Ant Financial’s digital platform to improve access to financial services for unbanked and underbanked households

Source: Dallas Business Journal



Burger King
Burger King has been testing mobile-payment technology that lets users order and complete purchases using their phones and is looking to launch in the next several months

  • The move is seen as an attempt to get ahead of McDonald’s roll-out of mobile order and payment technology via its app by the end of 2017 
  • With the new Burger King app, customers would be able to use their phones to order and pay for food before they arrive at the restaurant, which could reduce waiting times

Source: Bloomberg Technology (

Walmart is making it faster and more cost-efficient for customers to send money by implementing new “rollback” fees to its Walmart2Walmart money transfer program

  • The reduced fees allow customers to initiate cash transfers at a cost that is between 20% to 90% cheaper than that of Western Union (their main competitor), according to Walmart
  • Additionally, Walmart is also set to launch Bluebird2Walmart Money Transfer Service, which will allow customers of Bluebird to digitally send money for cash pickup at Walmart locations

Source: Walmart

The Merchant Payment Digest is a new monthly newsletter from Oliver Wyman focusing on merchant-relevant payments topics.  Our goal is to provide the latest updates in the payments landscape to help keep merchants apprised of the many developments in the rapidly shifting payments space.

Oliver Wyman is a leading global management consulting firm with over 50 offices in 26 countries that combines broad industry knowledge and expertise with close partnerships and relationships.

Oliver Wyman has a dedicated global Payments team that draws on years of industry-shaping work across all aspects of Payments, brings deep expertise in digital and retail, and leverages our state-of-the art research partners at Celent to help our clients develop strategies that capitalize on the winds of change in the Payments landscape.

We welcome your thoughts and feedback on this inaugural version and we look forward to sharing monthly editions with you in the future.