Visa Europe's director of mobile, Mary Carol Harris, has jumped ship to join Apple, where she will lead the firm's push into the mobile payments sector on the continent.
Harris is an experienced digital payments expert with over 14 years of experience in a range of mobile payments, having launched some of the early SMS- and USSD-based m-payment services in developing markets and more recently mobile contactless (NFC) and other mobile payments across Europe.
A fromer head of NFC for Telefonica, Harris joined Visa in February 2008 as a senior manager in the card scheme's mobile payments unit, working her way up the ranks.
As director of mobile, Harris was responsible for commercialising Visa's mobile propositions in Europe, including mobile contactless payments (NFC and all variants), and P2P payments.
Prior to that she spent two years as vice president, head of strategic alliances and projects in mobile, contactless and innovation. In this position she was responsible for building a new team from scratch in Visa to create new opportunities with mobile and digital players - including mobile network operators, handset manufacturers, OS and platform providers.
Her experience should prove invaluable as Apple seeks to secure the same level of European bank support for Apple Pay as it enjoyed for its US launch earlier this month, where big guns such as Chase, Citi, Bank of America, Capital One and Wells Fargo came out in support of the project.