Merchant Payments Digest - 31st Edition

The Merchant Payments Digest is a regular update from Oliver Wyman to keep merchants apprised of developments in the rapidly shifting payments space.


Transformational payments solutions:Affirm, the POS financing provider, launched a new app with which customers can use financing at virtually any merchant – including those that do not have a direct integration with Affirm at checkout. In this new offering, Affirm will create a one-time-use virtual payment card that customers can use to pay online or at any physical store that accepts Apple Pay or Google Pay. According to Affirm, over 50% of US consumers are willing to use installment loans for purchases under $250.

Source: Business Insider


Rules and regulations:

The European Banking Authority (EBA) has specified December 31st, 2020 as the new deadline for the migration to Strong Customer Authentication (SCA) for e-commerce card-based payments within the EU. The EBA had earlier offered an extension to payments providers beyond the initial go-live date of September 14th, 2019 for becoming SCA-compliant. The extension was due to possible risks to enabling a consistent approach and a seamless transition across the EU. The EBA has recommended that national authorities prioritize monitoring migration plans instead of pursuing enforcement against non-compliant payment providers in the short-term.

Source: European Banking Authority (EBA)


Customers’ evolving expectations:

Apple Pay has overtaken Starbucks as the leading mobile payment method in the US by number of users. After years of lagging adoption, Apple Pay’s growth has outpaced previous projections, benefiting from the adoption of new NFC POS terminals. By the end of the year, Apple Pay is expected to have 30 MM users in the US, representing 47% of POS mobile payments users, as compared to 25 MM users for Starbucks. With 70% of US merchants forecasted to accept Apple Pay by the end of 2019, this raises the stakes for other merchants to do so as well.

Source: eMarketer


Data:Visa has completed the purchase of token services and ticketing businesses from Rambus. Integrating Rambus’ technology into its existing Visa Token Services is expected to offer additional fraud prevention for merchants. It will also allow Visa to bring tokenization to account-based and real-time payment transactions, leveraging the additional data security that tokens offer. The acquisition gives Visa the opportunity to reach new markets with location-specific, domestic card network requirements where Rambus operates today.

Source: Visa


New providers:

Libra, Facebook’s cryptocurrency project, has recently seen a few of its large corporate backers drop out. eBay, Stripe, Visa and Mastercard all followed PayPal in withdrawing their support for Libra in early October. The response came weeks before Mark Zuckerberg was in Capitol Hill to testify before the Financial Services Committee on his plans for Libra. These investigations and hearings could create additional delays for Libra, which is expected to launch in mid-2020.

Source: CNBC, CNN


  • Visa, American Express, Discover, and Mastercard have together gone live with their Secure Remote Commerce (SRC) offering. The companies expect their new co-branded click-to-pay button to offer customers a seamless checkout solution for eCommerce transactions, in contrast to the numerous checkout buttons that exist today. Cinemark and Rakuten are among the first merchants to adopt the new button, with others such as Saks Fifth Avenue and Papa John’s committing to join before the end of 2019. The companies also anticipate that this will lead to lower abandonment while offering multiple payment options through a single integration.

    Source: Business Wire

  • Visa and Intuit QuickBooks have partnered to offer Intuit’s small business customers instant deposit of funds by leveraging the Visa Direct rails. According to Intuit, two-thirds of small businesses report that payment processing time has the largest impact on their cash flow. To mitigate this processing lag, Visa will now enable merchants to access their funds earlier, offering additional financial flexibility.

    Source: Intuit


  • Capital One and Walmart have partnered to launch a co-branded credit card, the Capital One Walmart Rewards Mastercard. Additionally, a private-label Walmart Rewards card has also been introduced, exclusively for closed-loop purchases at Walmart. Both cards offer additional cash back offers when cardholders use Walmart’s mobile payment solution, Walmart Pay, in-store. The partnership incentivizes customers with Walmart Rewards and cash back on purchases while leveraging Capital One’s digital expertise.

    Source: Walmart

  • The New York Mets and biometrics firm Clear have installed AI and biometric self-checkouts at Citi Field in Brooklyn. The system leverages Clear’s AI platform to simultaneously scan multiple items placed on the scanner of the self-checkout unit and validate payment using the customer’s fingerprint. The kiosk also recognizes if an alcoholic beverage is purchased, simultaneously validating if the customer is of legal drinking age before authorizing the purchase. Last year, Clear piloted a similar system in Seattle’s CenturyLink Field and T-Mobile Park, marking the first time biometrics were used to validate ID and make payments in the US.

    Source: Finextra

Oliver Wyman is a global leader in management consulting with offices in 60 cities across 29 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.

To have a discussion with Oliver Wyman on your payments issues and opportunities, please contact Beth Costa or Rob Mau at

Note that Oliver Wyman believes the curated content to be reliable, but it has not been verified.  As such, Oliver Wyman gives no warranty as to the accuracy of such information.  Oliver Wyman’s curation of such content should not be interpreted as an endorsement of the organizations that published the content.