German bank WestLB and US payment processing outfit First Data are teaming up to launch a new business dedicated to providing card acceptance services to retailers across Europe.
The partners are setting up First Merchant Solutions in a bid to take advantage of the introduction of the single euro payments area (Sepa).
First Data says Sepa's launch means the retail sector needs a valid, cross-border card acceptance agreement that lets merchants benefit from greater efficiency, more competitive pricing and the assurance of settlement and payment flow to any account in the region.
The venture will see WestLB provide the licenses and payment services infrastructure with First Data offering a range of merchant acquiring services. The services will be offered in 38 countries and territories across Europe.
Steffen Kowalski, executive management team, WestLB, says: "First Merchant Solutions embodies our efforts to fulfil the retail sector's market needs, which have been evolving in Europe as a result of Sepa."