Zwipe getting ready to drive Next-Generation Payment Cards
Summer Greetings from André Løvestam, CEO of Zwipe
OSLO, NORWAY - 9 JULY 2021
Dear stakeholders of Zwipe,
Through the first half of 2021, our global payment ecosystem of Smart Card Manufacturers, Payment Processors, Banks and Go-to-market Partners has continued to expand at a rapid pace, further strengthening our foundation for future market success. In these challenging times, our growing team of competent and passionate Zwipers, spanning 14 different nationalities in nine countries across three different continents and five time zones from Colorado Springs to Singapore, has demonstrated exceptional teamwork with a solid focus on customers. I am delighted to share that the interest in biometric payment cards based on Zwipe technology, which deliver a more convenient, secure and safe means to pay, has never been stronger. The voices of consumers captured by Zwipe in the UK, USA, Canada, Sweden, Norway and Romania since August last year are encouraging and consistent with similar findings from card schemes and other industry players.
Entering the Indian subcontinent and APAC region
In the first half of 2021, we announced six new Smart Card Manufacturers into our ecosystem:
KL HI Tech in India
Beautiful Card Corporation in Taiwan
Silkways Card and Printing Ltd in Bangladesh
Three card manufacturers in Europe and Asia who at this stage want to remain anonymous
Together, these manufacturers deliver around 200 million payment cards annually. In addition, we extended and expanded our partnership with TAG Systems, who delivers 100 million payment cards annually. Looking forward, it is great to see that our SCM and processor and issuer pipelines continue to grow.
The encouraging developments with card manufacturers received a big boost when Asia’s largest payment processor, Financial Software and Systems (FSS) embraced our next-generation payment cards platform based on Zwipe Pay ONE technology. FSS manages over 800 million cards, and we are now working with them to bring our ground-breaking innovation globally. We also strengthened our regional presence by appointing Masterline and Sonali Intellect Ltd. as our business development partners in India and Bangladesh, respectively.
Acceleration in the MENA Region and Europe
Middle East and North Africa (MENA)
On the back of growing demand for biometric payments cards in the MENA region, Network International (NI), providing payment services to over 200 banks in Middle East and Africa, and Middle East Payment Services (MEPS), a leading payment service provider in the Levant region, entered new partnerships with Zwipe. NI and MEPS have boosted our reach and delivery capabilities in the MENA Region, on top of our already strong network of prominent partners in the region, notably Masria Digital Payments, Inkript, areeba and Veritech. To effectively serve our growing partner network and issuers, we appointed Ramzi Saboury as the General Manager for the MENA region. Ramzi brings over 26 years of experience and network in payment services in MENA from leadership roles in Kuwaiti banks, VISA and areeba.
Europe and the UK
In the past few months, we have seen an increasing in-flow of interest from card manufacturers in multiple regions, most notably in Europe. The same can be said for issuer engagements that come through our Processor Partners and Card Manufacturers in Europe, especially in the UK and Nordics. This is proof that our “Megaphone” partner strategy works! Swedish fintech VOPY, providing embedded financial services to clients globally, and France-based payment service provider, be ys Pay, selected Zwipe Pay ONE (ZPO) cards for their ssuers, aiming to pilot Zwipe Pay ONE this year. Both these developments came within months of OP Bank’s decision to pilot with cards based on the Zwipe Pay ONE platform togheter with our Go-to-market partner, TietoEVRY. OP is Finland’s largest financial services group and serves over four million customers.
Delivery of Zwipe Pay ONE on track
We had strong progress in the development of Zwipe Pay ONE, the world’s first Single Silicon based biometric payment platform offered to card manufacturers globally. In April 2021, we demonstrated our enrollment solution and touch-free payment transactions above the transaction cap at a Point-of-Sales terminal with test keys to emulate fully EMV authorized and authenticated transactions in a live environment. The feedback from the market was very positive as everyone could see how these cards quickly and reliably provide a considerable boost to user experience and security.
In fact, we have now passed most critical milestones and major risk points,with only piloting and certification left before commercialization in mass volumes.
Next steps – pilots and certification
Apart from pilots planned from late this quarter, certification will represent the last milestone before commercialization. We have already performed pre-tests at accredited test labs with excellent results.
We are now working closely with the card schemes to secure these processes, which will be explained in detail during our H1 2021 reporting on 26 August. In the coming weeks, we will start handing out Zwipe Pay ONE demo cards to issuers and partners and continue to help them prepare for commercial launches.
Last, but not least, H1 2021 has seen further strengthening of our team across all functions – commercial, technical, operational and regional. We have engaged every Zwiper in developing and honing our Winning Team Culture, with our Core Values driving us to be Innovative, Collaborative, Adaptable and Passionate. Each recruitment is intended not only to add capacity, but also to uplift our team. I am also pleased to see further strengthening of our board.
I take this opportunity to thank each member of the Zwipe team for their remarkable effort and passion to our mission of Making Convenience safe and secure. My thanks also go out to all our customers, partners, and shareholders for sharing this mission as strongly as every Zwiper.
I wish each one of you a very safe and happy summer ahead!