SIX Payment Services has already achieved a record figure for transaction processing: since the start of the year, the payment provider has recorded 1 billion acquiring transactions. Based on the figure at the end of November, this corresponds to an increase of 13.55%.
On 1 December 2015, the specialist for cashless payment solutions processed the 1,000,000,000th acquiring transaction in this calendar year. As of the end of November, the total number of transactions was over 997 million with a volume of over EUR 58 bn processed by SIX at the POS and in e-commerce throughout Europe. This includes payment transactions with credit and debit cards (MasterCard, Visa, Maestro, V PAY, JCB, Diners and China Union Pay in Switzerland, Austria, Luxembourg, Germany, Hungary, Poland, Slovenia, UK and several other countries. While the annual average in 2014 was still around 3.03 million transactions per day, this figure rose to roughly 3.1 million in 2015.
Jürg Weber, Division CEO SIX Payment Services, comments: “I am pleased with this great performance and would like to thank our customers and employees. Only together it was possible to achieve this impressive magic number. The positive development is the best proof for our work and means that we can hope for a good Christmas shopping season. After all, around 10 Million transactions from throughout Europe are reliably processed through our systems on every Saturday in December.”
The increasing acceptance of contactless payment means that cards are used to pay for smaller amounts. Aside from growing transaction figures, this also results in an average transaction value (ATV) that is now 10% lower than in 2014.
Country and trade-specific growth drivers
The increase in transactions in Switzerland results primarily from the credit card sector, where SIX recorded 11.45% more Visa transactions and 12.25% more MasterCard transactions in the first 11 months of 2015 than in the previous year. Transactions with debit cards rose by 7,9%; the introduction of the V PAY card as a counterpart to Maestro has not yet significantly impacted this figure. Throughout Switzerland, the ATV has declined from CHF 86.60 (EUR 79.45) in 2014 to CHF 79.50 (EUR 72.94) in 2015.
In Poland, credit card transactions processed by SIX increased by 27.51% at the end of November. In Austria, debit card transactions rose by 6.3%. In Germany, SIX was able to significantly increase its transaction volumes beyond market growth through the activation of the STAR petrol stations.
In general, the greatest driver is food retailing. Overall, the sector increased by 64.5 million transactions (as of the end of November 2015). This corresponds to a rise of 16.4%.
It is interesting to note the Europe-wide differences in average spending in food retailing: in Switzerland, where credit card payments have been common in stores like Coop and Migros for a long time, the ATV is CHF 56.—(EUR 51,40) in the debit sector and CHF 59,-- (EUR 54,13) in the credit sector. In Austria, where credit cards still hardly feature in this segment, the average spending is roughly EUR 34.-- for debit cards and EUR 36.-- for credit cards. In both countries, the average spending per transaction in food retailing has considerably fallen: in Austria on average by 13.4%, in Switzerland by 7,9%.
In all other countries the trend towards credit card payments for smaller in food retailing amounts is reflected in the figures: SIX records an increase of 33.2% in credit card payments and 3.7% in debit card payments, while at the same time the ATV has decreased by 24.1% to EUR 14.60.