VISA EUROPE, which runs the biggest card payments system in the region, reported a 13 per cent rise in the number of transactions over its platform last year, accounting for a seventh of all consumer spending in Europe.
The number of cards rose by 6.5 per cent to 445m and it processed 11.8bn transactions.
The not-for--profit company also reported a strong Christmas trading result, with the daily average number of transactions rising 14.4 per cent to 25.2m. Its busiest day was the 23 December as consumers rushed to buy presents before the holiday.
The surge in volumes pushed revenues over €1bn, compared to €878m in 2010, while its pre-tax profit was €241m – more than a three-fold increase on the 2010 result.
The firm is pushing further into mobile banking and says it has doubled its headcount to 1,600 over five years, in addition to around 500 contractors on its books.
Chief executive Peter Ayliffe (pictured below) told City A.M. that “mobile is the future of payments” and was keen to focus on the firm’s technology push.
The firm is particularly focusing on using mobile phones for contactless payment, although Ayliffe said there would be a lag before it becomes widespread.