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Merchant Acquirers: Western Europe

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  • Published Date: May 2020

Western Europe's merchant acquiring market is one of the most competitive yet complex globally. While the market is of a similar size to North America's, the region in many ways remains a collection of individual markets which makes a regional approach challenging to implement.

The latest regional merchant acquirers report from Verisk Financial Research combines in-depth information on Western Europe's key acquiring markets with a region-wide view of industry developments.

Topics covered include industry consolidation – with profiles of the key players and their strategies – trends in card use, the growth of e-commerce and contactless, the rise of payments facilitators, and developments in alternative payments.

This report combines insightful commentary explaining the context of market developments with up-to-date data on each country's cards, merchant acquirers and online acquiring markets.

This merchant acquirers market report on Western Europe features:

  • Key trends in acquiring across the region
  • Up-to-date commentary and insights on 16 countries
  • Competitive intelligence, including market share data for acquirers
  • Over 150 pages of market data

What you can learn from this merchant acquirers report

  • Why the Western European market still has growth potential, and where opportunity can be found.
  • How individual countries' acquiring markets are developing within an increasingly complex regional sector.
  • Why merchant acquirer consolidation is essential for success – but challenging to execute

With macro-level commentary on the region's payments landscape, plus country-level insight underpinned by extensive market data, this report is essential to understanding developments and opportunities in Western Europe's acquiring market.

Contact us for an online demo or to find out more.

Western Europe Countries | report coverage

  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Denmark
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Netherlands
  • Norway
  • Portugal
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • United Kingdom

Western Europe Card Data | tables included

Western Europe cards market

  • Total cards payment metrics
  • Contactless cards metrics
  • Credit card numbers
  • Total credit cards metrics
  • Credit cards profitability indicators
  • Debit cards numbers
  • Debit cards metrics
  • Prepaid/e-money cards metrics (excluding Austria, Finland, Ireland & Sweden)
  • iDEALonline payment system (the Netherlands only)

Merchant acquirers

  • Merchant acquiring credit card market share
  • Credit card merchant service charges
  • Merchant acquirer debit card market share
  • Debit card merchant service charges
  • Credit card issuer/issuing processor relationships
  • Credit card acquirer/acquiring processor relationships
  • Credit card issuing processor market shares by card numbers
  • Credit card acquiring processor market shares by the number of POS transactions

Online acquiring

  • Online merchant acquirers' market share

Western Europe Acquiring | selected extracts

Although European Union regulation has simplified licensing and encouraged the creation of a single market, expanding to new countries requires significant investment and the building of new partnerships, particularly when it comes to traditional POS acquiring. Domestic schemes, a feature of several markets, can create additional barriers to entry and are often associated with lower margins...
Despite the challenges, the market is consolidating at pace with mergers and acquisitions the order of the day; hardly surprising given the importance of scale to the payments industry ...
While Europe is a highly developed payments market, there is plenty of unrealised potential. Although cash use has been suppressed in parts of the region (most notably in Scandinavia), further south it remains the preferred payment method for many.

Austria:
Worldline and Card Complete Service Bank together dominate the merchant acquiring market in Austria. Other acquirers include Hobex and Ingenico Payone. In Austria, most of the banks carry out processing services in-house. SIA, however, is active in the market as a third party processor.

Belgium:
Worldline dominates merchant acquiring in Belgium, with an estimated 121,000 merchant accounts in 2019 (out of an estimated 153,714 merchant accounts). More acquirers have entered the market in recent years. Processing services are dominated by Worldline. Worldline operates issuing and acquiring services for its customers, as well as providing other services.

Denmark:
The merchant acquiring market for credit cards in Denmark is dominated by Nets, which holds an approximately 68% share of all credit card acquired transactions. In addition to the merchant acquiring market, Nets also dominates processing in Denmark, enjoying an estimated 88% share of the total number of credit card transactions.

Finland:
In Finland, Nets enjoys an effective monopoly, acquiring almost all international credit and debit card transactions – American Express being an exception. Virtually all issuing processing is carried out either in-house or via Nets, with the latter carrying out processing for most Visa payment cards and Eurocard business.

France:
In contrast to many European markets, where the traditional domestic acquirers are being squeezed out by specialist acquirers, acquiring in France is carried out by the issuing banks. Processing in France is generally carried out in-house or shared between banks through purpose-built entities. All major processors combine issuing and acquiring processing.

Germany:
Germany's acquiring market has been going through transformational mergers and acquisitions ... with non-banks doing much of the running. Fiserv (formerly First Data), TSYS and Worldline dominate the German processing landscape.

Greece:
Greece lags behind other EU countries in non-cash transactions; however, card payments are slowly increasing in the country due to the number of initiatives taken by the government. In terms of card issuing and acquiring processing, there are opportunities for third-party processors in Greece, particularly on the acquiring side.

Ireland:
Ireland's acquiring market has come to be heavily influenced by some of the largest global players, though the two leading banks maintain an interest through joint ventures. Acquiring processing is done in-house by leading acquirers and, as a result, the market is dominated by AIB Merchant Services and Worldpay.

Italy:
The Italian acquiring market is mainly concentrated in the hands of Nexi, Intesa Sanpaolo and UniCredit. This trio collectively accounts for over 80% of acquired billed volume on credit cards. The processing market in Italy is highly consolidated, with SIA and Nexi dominant.

Netherlands:
The combination of Worldline and PaySquare created a clear market leader in credit card acquiring. EquensWorldline and First Data are the two main acquiring processors in the Dutch market.

Norway:
Nets is the key player in the country's acquiring ecosystem. It is the leading acquirer of international cards, processes all BankAxept transactions and is a leading terminal provider. Norway's issuers tend to outsource credit card processing, either partly or wholly.

Portugal:
With over 372,000 EMV-compliant POS terminals in 2019, Portugal has a well-developed acceptance network for payment cards. SIBS (the country's interbank services company) dominates the acquiring processing market.

Spain:
With approximately 1.82 million POS terminals at the end of 2018, Spain has one of the largest acquiring networks in Europe. The leading acquirer is Comercia Global Payments, which is a joint venture between CaixaBank and Global Payments.

Sweden:
Swedbank Babs is the largest acquirer in the Swedish market, acquiring around 60% of card transactions. NETS, Handelsbanken and Bambora are its main competitors. The acquiring processing market in Sweden is highly concentrated.

Switzerland:
Merchant acquiring in Switzerland is dominated by SIX Payment Services and Ingenico Payone. Acquiring processing in Switzerland is carried out in-house by SIX Payment Services, but is mainly outsourced by the smaller acquirers.

United Kingdom:
Britain's acquiring market is concentrated, with some 61% of credit card acquired billed volume in the hands of Barclaycard and Worldpay. Independent service operators have made significant inroads into the British acquiring processing market.

Western Europe Report | entities referenced

  • Acce
  • 2CheckOut
  • 2Happy
  • AA
  • AB Toscana Investment
  • ABN Amro
  • Aduno
  • Advent
  • Adyen
  • Aer Lingus
  • AIB
  • AIB Merchant Services
  • AIBMS
  • Aldi
  • Alipay
  • Allianz
  • Allied Irish Banks
  • Alpha Bank
  • Amazon
  • American Express
  • Amex
  • An Post:
  • Apple Pay
  • Arbejdernes Lsbank
  • Argos
  • Asda
  • Asos
  • Atos
  • Atos Origin
  • Atos Worldline
  • Auchan
  • Austria
  • Automobile Association
  • Aviva
  • AXA
  • Axepta
  • B+S
  • B+S Card Service
  • Babs
  • Bain
  • Bambora
  • Banca Carige
  • Banca di Genova
  • Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena
  • Banca Nazionale del Lavoro
  • Banco Ambrosiano Veneto
  • Banco Best
  • Banco Central
  • Banco Cetelem
  • Banco CTT
  • Banco Hispano Americano
  • Banco Português de Negócios
  • Banco Sabadell
  • Banco Santer Totta
  • Bancomat
  • Bancontact
  • Bank Austria
  • Bank Norwegian
  • Bank of Ireland
  • Bank of Ireland Payment Acceptance
  • Bankenes BetalingsSentral
  • Bankia
  • Bankinter
  • Banksys
  • Banque Postale
  • Barclaycard
  • Barclays
  • BauHaus
  • Bawag PSK
  • BBS
  • BBVA
  • BC Card
  • BeCommerce
  • Benfica
  • Beponoyadz
  • BNL
  • BNL POSitivity
  • BNP Paribas
  • BNP Paribas Fortis
  • BOIPA
  • BOKIS
  • Bonprix
  • BOOTIK
  • BP
  • BPCE
  • BPI
  • BPN
  • British Airways
  • Brussels Metro
  • BS Payone
  • Buckaroo
  • Buy Way
  • CACP
  • Caixa Geral de Depósitos
  • CaixaBank
  • Capital One
  • Card Complete Service Bank
  • Cardis International
  • Cardlink
  • CardMobile
  • CardProcess
  • Cardstream
  • Carrefour
  • CartaSi
  • Carte Bleue
  • Cartes Bancaires
  • CB
  • CCV
  • Cdiscount
  • Cdp Equity
  • CECA
  • Cedicam
  • CEKAB
  • Certitrade
  • CGD
  • Checkout Finl
  • Citicorp
  • Clearhaus
  • Clessidra SGR
  • CM Payments
  • CNMC
  • Comercia Global Payments
  • Comit
  • Computop
  • Concardis
  • Conrad Electronics
  • Consorsbank
  • Continente
  • COOP
  • Coop Sweden
  • CoreMarket
  • Cornèr Banca
  • Cornèrcard
  • Crédit Agricole
  • Crédit Mutuel
  • Credit Suisse
  • Crédito Agrícola
  • Currence
  • Cyberpac
  • Cyberport
  • CyberSource
  • Danish Bankers Association
  • Dankort
  • Danske Bank
  • DataCash
  • DBA
  • De Volksbank
  • Dell
  • Deloitte
  • Delta Singular Outsourcing Services
  • Desjardins
  • Deutsche Bank
  • Deutsche Postbank
  • Deutscher Sparkassenverlag
  • DIBS
  • DinaCard
  • Diners Club
  • Discover
  • DK Online
  • Domain
  • Dropbox
  • DSV Group
  • DZ Bank
  • Easybank
  • EasyPay
  • eBay
  • EDB
  • Edgepay
  • Educational Building Society
  • e-fresh
  • Eika Gruppen
  • El Corte Inglés
  • Elavon
  • Elavon Merchant Services
  • Elektronisk Data Behling
  • Elgiganten
  • EMS
  • EnterCard
  • ePay
  • Equens
  • equensWorldline
  • ErgoGroup
  • Erste Bank
  • Español de Crédito
  • euPago
  • EURO 6000
  • Eurobank
  • EuroBic
  • Eurocard
  • euroConex
  • Euroline
  • Euronet
  • Euronet Card Services Greece
  • Euronet EFT
  • Euronics
  • Europay
  • Europcar
  • European Merchant Services
  • EVO Payments
  • EVRY
  • F2i
  • Faster Payments Service
  • FDIH
  • Fidelity National Information Services
  • First Data
  • FIS
  • Fiserv
  • Fiserv
  • Fnac
  • FPS
  • FSIA Investimenti
  • Galp
  • Gate2Payments
  • Gesellschaft für Zahlungssysteme
  • GestPay
  • Girocard
  • Giropay
  • Global Collect
  • Global Payments
  • Google Pay
  • Groupement des Cartes Bancaires
  • GZS
  • H&M
  • Hagebaumarkt
  • Halifax
  • HAT
  • HCC
  • Heidelpay
  • Hellenic Competition Commission
  • Hello Bank!
  • Helsbanken
  • Hertz
  • Hibu
  • HMV
  • Hobex
  • Hogast
  • HSBC
  • Hype
  • Hypothekarbank Lenzburg
  • Iberiacards
  • IBS
  • ICA Banken
  • ICBPI
  • ICS
  • iDEAL
  • IDT Finance
  • IfThenPay
  • Ikano Bank
  • IkanoFinans
  • IKEA
  • immonet.de
  • ING
  • Ingenico
  • Ingenico Payone
  • Ingenico Retail
  • InköpsCentralernas Aktiebolag
  • Instreamline
  • InterCard
  • Interpay
  • Intesa Sanpaolo
  • Intuit
  • Intuit Pay
  • iZettle
  • JCB
  • Jem & Fix
  • Jiffy
  • JiffyPay
  • John Lewis
  • JYSK
  • Jyske Bank
  • KBC
  • KeyCorp
  • KIOSK
  • Klarna
  • KLM
  • KortacceptL
  • La Banque Postale
  • Länsförsäkringar Bank
  • LeShop
  • Lidl
  • Lloyds Bank
  • Lufthansa
  • Luottokunta
  • Maestro
  • Market Pay
  • Marks & Spencer
  • Mastercard
  • McDonald's
  • Mediolanum
  • MedMera Bank
  • Mercury
  • Migros
  • Millennium BCP
  • Mister Spex
  • MoBiB
  • MobilePay
  • Mollie
  • Monese
  • Monetico International
  • Monext
  • mPAY24
  • MPS
  • Multibanco Reference
  • MultiSafepay
  • N26
  • National Bank of Greece
  • Natixis
  • NatWest Tyl
  • NBG
  • Nespresso
  • Netaxept
  • NetCaixa
  • Netflix
  • NetOnNet
  • NetPay
  • Nets
  • New Look
  • NewDay
  • Nexi
  • Nexi Pay
  • Next
  • Nordea
  • Nordea Merchant Acquiring
  • Nordic Capital
  • Nordito
  • Norsk Tipping
  • Notebooksbilliger.de
  • Nova Information Systems
  • Novalnet
  • Novo Banco
  • Nykredit
  • O2
  • Oasis
  • Ogone
  • Omnipay
  • Oney
  • OP Financial Group
  • Otto
  • Oyster
  • Paddy Power
  • PagoBancomat
  • Partecis
  • Pay.be
  • Pay.nl
  • Paybox
  • Payconiq
  • PayEx
  • Paygate
  • PayLife
  • Payline
  • Payment Highway
  • Payment Services Austria
  • Payone
  • PayPal
  • PayPass
  • Payson
  • PaySquare
  • Paytrail
  • Payzone
  • PB Banken
  • PBS
  • Pengeinstitutternes BetalingsSystemer
  • PensoPay
  • Pepsi
  • PerfectCard
  • Permanent TSB
  • PFS
  • Pharm24
  • Piraeus Bank
  • Pivo
  • Play.com
  • Pleo
  • Porto
  • Postcard
  • Poste Italiane
  • Postepay
  • PostFinance
  • Postnord
  • PPRO
  • Preem
  • Prepaid Financial Services
  • PRICENET
  • Proton
  • PSP Ogone
  • PULSE
  • Quest Group
  • QuickPay
  • Rabobank
  • Raiffeisen
  • RBI
  • RBS
  • Realex
  • Redes y Procesos
  • Redunicre
  • ReePay
  • Revolut
  • Ruter
  • Sage Pay
  • Samport
  • Samsung Pay
  • Santer
  • Saúde e Bem-Estar
  • Saxo
  • S-Bank
  • ScanPay
  • SEB
  • SEB Kort
  • Secure Trading
  • SERMEPA
  • ServiRed
  • Setefi
  • Shell
  • Shop Direct
  • SIA
  • SIBS
  • SICB
  • Siirto
  • Silvan
  • SiNSYS
  • Sipay
  • Sistema 4B
  • Sistema de Tarjetas y Medios de Pago
  • SIX Payment Services
  • SkiaBanken
  • Skinaviska Enskilda Banken
  • Skrill
  • SNCF
  • Sociedade Interbancária de Serviços
  • Société Générale
  • Sofort
  • Sony
  • Spar Nord
  • Sparbankskort
  • SpareBank 1
  • Sporting
  • Spotify
  • SSB
  • SSE Airtricity
  • Stripe
  • Sumclearing
  • SumUp
  • Sunway Travel
  • Suomen Verkkomaksut
  • Swedbank
  • Swedbank Babs
  • Swedbank Card Services
  • Swirl
  • Swish
  • Swisscard
  • Sydbank
  • TAP
  • Tchibo
  • Tecnologia Online
  • TeleCash
  • Telefonica
  • Telia
  • Teller
  • Tesco
  • TfL
  • Three
  • Transactis
  • Transaktioninstitut für Zahlungsdiensleistungen
  • Transport for London
  • TSYS
  • U.S. Bancorp
  • Uber
  • UBS
  • Ulster Bank
  • Unicre
  • UniCredit
  • UniCredito
  • UnionPay
  • UniversalPay
  • V PAY
  • Vanquis
  • Vantiv
  • Vente-Privée
  • Via Verde
  • Vipps
  • Virgin Atlantic
  • Visa
  • Viseca.
  • V-B-ZVD
  • Vocalink
  • Vodafone Ireland
  • Volksbank
  • VR Payment
  • Waiap
  • Way2Pay
  • Widiba
  • Wirecard
  • Wish data set
  • WiZink
  • Worldline
  • Worldpay
  • XPay
  • Yoleni's
  • Yoox
  • You
  • Z.mall
  • Zalo

MORE ON MERCHANT ACQUIRING REPORTS

Verisk Financial Research delivers comparative market and competitor intelligence on merchant acquiring and processing, retail banking, consumer credit, payments cards and e-commerce markets. Country Reports provide invaluable market and competitor intelligence on card payments markets in 72 countries.

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