Norway is still best in class using cards for payments

Latest statistics from Norwegian payment company’s Nets and Bank BankAxept shows new record figures for 2017 and the use of cards for payments.

2017 cards was used 1.86 billion times, a 4.5% increase from 2016, for bying goods & services at a total value of 627.7 billion NOK (= 65 billion Euro), a 2.8% increase from 2016.

Local card scheme BankAxept has an outstanding lead, with 85% of the total transaction volume and 80% of the total value of card purchases. Rest of the volume is divided between Visa, Mastercard and AMEX.

Read more here (in Norwegian).

My guess is that Norway continue to have the most cost effective payment infrastructore in the world. Regarding mobile payments in Norway there is still very few transactions done, I believe less than 0.1%. Local player Vipps is making progress for online payments, Samsung Pay is just launched and Apple Pay has launched in all Nordic countries..but not in Norway, a country where iPhone has a more than 50% market share. Can it be a “bank problem” or is Apple awaiting more enabled NFC-terminals in Norway?



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Sweden merchants embrace Swish as payment method – November figures

Swedes loves the real-time payment method Swish, first for doing person-to-person and now more and more when paying for goods and services. Here is some stats on Swish from the month of November 2017Bildresultat för swish logga

  • 6+ million active users
  • 21.5 million transactions, where of 2M for online purchases
  • Total volume “swished”, 12.2 billion SEK (equals €1.23B or $1.45B)
  • 140 000 businesses accepting P2B Swish payment
  • 1 400 online shops

Big online retailers also start accepting Swish. Remarkable examples that has gained nice traction are Svenska Spel, Swedens largest betting company, where 40+% of online/inapp transactions is paid with Swish, ATG, large horse betting, sees 30+% of online/inapp transactions paid with Swish and “late onboarder” SJ, largest train operating company, where 50% of inapp and 1/3 of online purchases is paid with Swish.

Early this year when Swish was launched for online/inapp purchases, the Swish chairman of the board said that “Swish will take 20% in 2 years”, I think it will go faster.

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Snapshot Norway – Card Volumes October 2017

Norway has the most effective payment infrastructure in the world. Interesting is to see how and why, so here is a snapshot of volumes and transactions during October 2017 (figures posted at Finans Norge). Local card scheme BankAxept is used in 86% of all card purchases.

October 2017

  • Total card volume, 50.6 billion NOK
  • Total number of card transactions, 154.8 million tx
  • Volume via local scheme BankAxept, 40.7 billion NOK (80% of total volume)
  • Transactions via BankAxept, 133.4 million tx (86% of total card tx’s)
  • Rest of the transactions volume was via different international cards, credit cards and digital gift cards.
  • Almost 60% of the BankAxept transaction volume was on purchases below 200 NOK (= €22)

My estimate is that cards in Norway stands for approx 85% of the payment transactions in the country, amazing.

Bildresultat för picture bankaxept


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Alipay mobile payments performed 90% of Alibaba sales volume during “11.11”

China Singles Day 2017, or “11.11” as it also is called, created a new record for Alibaba and fantastic numbers last Saturday. Total sales was at Alibaba was $25.3 billion, 1.5 billion transactions and 90% of the sales was settled on mobile via Alipay. That’s 17k transactions per second during the shopping hysteria day :-).

Read more here.


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Mobile payment Sweden update – One in/one out

SEQR (by Seamless) was launched in Sweden in 2011, starting as a QR-based mobile payment method, later adding NFC. SEQR was at merchant chains in Sweden as Hemköp, Willys and McDonalds used SEQR instore, but all is taken’ away.

Seamless is also active in a few other countries, like Germany, Netherlands, Spain, USA and France. The company now say that it “probably” will close down or sell its B2C business for SEQR, to put more focus into B2B-payments.

On Tuesday next week (Oct 24) Apple Pay will be launched in Sweden and in Finland and Denmark, but not in Norway. It will from start be backed by Nordea as first bank, and will be available at merchants 7-Eleven, Pressbyrån & Elgiganten.

Bildresultat för seqr logo                              Bildresultat för apple pay logo

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Cash in Sweden is dead after March 24, 2023

Two scientist’s from The KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm and The Copenhagen Business School, has calculated when cash is not longer accepted at Swedish merchants. The date is calculated as of the trend of cash usage in Sweden and is set to March 24, 2023, only 5½ year’s from now..

The study was done with 741 merchants and shows that 97% of the merchants accepts cash, but that only 18% of consumers transactions are cash. Card payments are dominating with only 0,4% of all transactions done via mobile.

Driving force beside that consumers more and more use cards, is the increase of cash handling cost’s for merchants.

A project called e-krona initiated by The Riksbank, Sweden’s Central Bank, could help consumers that want an anonymous way to pay. The Riksbank say that a decision to introduce e-krona could be taken’ two years from now.



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MobilePay quits Norway – Nordic consilidation game continues

MobilePay, by Danske Bank and with Nordea as partner in Norway, has decided to close their business and payment app in Norway. Instead they will discuss to get into the successful Vipps consortia, as I understand as a distribution partner.

So, the consilidation game in Nordic continues, now with one big and quite successful mobile payment player per country; Vipps in Norway, Swish in Sweden, MobilePay in Denmark, Siirto in Finland and the newly launched Siminn Pay on Iceland. All of these solutions has gain adoption via a free 24/7 person-to-person mobile payment service and from that they go and will get into online/inapp and instore mobile payments.

As it looks just now, each service will focus on their respective local markets, even though rumors say that both Swish and Vipps could show up in “nearby countries” including the three Baltic states.

Read more here.

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