American Express and First Data ink Polish merchant services agreement

Source: First Data

First Data, a global leader in electronic commerce and payment processing services, and American Express, today announced a new merchant services agreement in Poland.

Under the terms of the agreement First Data will become the exclusive merchant acquirer and merchant processor for American Express Card transactions in Poland.

First Data will assume responsibility for the range of merchant services including signing new merchants to accept American Express branded cards, managing relationships with existing merchants and processing merchant transactions on the American Express network. First Data will also be responsible for managing and implementing new solutions for American Express merchants in Poland, including migration to the EMV standard. American Express Card acceptance will remain available to Polish merchants through a number of acquiring agents, overseen by First Data.

"This exclusive agreement gives First Data's Polish operation a sustainable, competitive advantage, unmatched by any other bank or competitor in the region," said Nigel Bidmead, Senior Vice President and Head of First Data's International Merchant business. "We believe that we will be able to further grow card acceptance for American Express in Poland and introduce a totally new level of service quality to our merchants."

"In First Data we have an ideal services provider," said Pascal J. Guignard, Vice President and General Manager of Global Network Services in Europe, Middle East and Africa, American Express. "In addition to their tremendous expertise in merchant acquiring they have had a strong presence in Poland since 1991. Through this agreement, American Express will be well positioned to enhance the value provided to merchants. Together we will continue to focus on expanding card acceptance and usage at merchant locations that attract high spending American Express cardholders from both within and outside Poland."

First Data will leverage its nearly 20 years of payments experience and expertise in Poland to increase American Express' market penetration. "We will use our highly skilled sales force to offer American n Express products to merchants throughout Poland," said Janusz Diemko, managing director of First Data in Poland. "I am confident that this cooperation with American Express will influence the growth of the Polish cards market as a whole."

In addition to this agreement, American Express has had a card issuing agreement with Millennium Bank Polska S.A. (owned by Banco Comercial Portugues) since 1999. Today the bank issues a wide portfolio of American Express-branded cards to consumers throughout Poland. American Express will continue to maintain its travel and corporate card business in Poland, serving the needs of American Express Cardmembers and other travellers.

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