Forbes estimates that MasterCard’s transaction volumes will nearly double to 53 billion by 2018 as it executes on its mobile money initiative. Aimed at the 2.5 billion financially under-served consumers worldwide the programme will be fueled by collaboration with all the players in the ecosystem including technology providers, mobile network operators and financial institutions.
MasterCard has already launched a joint venture with Telefonica providing mobile payment solutions to over 87 million Telefonica customers in its Latin American markets. Customers will be able to transfer money, reload mobile airtime, pay bills and make retail purchases through a mobile wallet or a prepaid account linked to the mobile phone, according to Forbes.
It is interesting that Mastercard has targeted developing countries for its major growth in the next few years. History will tell us whether this is an indication that Mastercard believes the developed economies to be too crowded to make headway in, whether PayPal has stolen a march and Mastercard does not want to go ‘head to head’ or whether Mastercard has a master plan for the developed economies that will knock the competition out of the ring.