NFC Times Exclusive Insight – In an unprecedented move, four major Australian banks, including three of the country’s big four financial institutions, have asked the government for permission to negotiate collectively with Apple–seeking to break what it sees as the tech giant’s divide-and-conquer strategy for signing up issuers for Apple Pay.
The banks, which are all holdouts so far from participating in Apple Pay, filed the request to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission Tuesday, saying they need the weight of multiple banks to counter what they consider to be Apple’s excessive clout to dictate terms for Apple Pay. UPDATE (Aug. 10, 2016): Apple in a response strongly urged the commission to reject the request by the banks to bargain collectively and to jointly boycott participation during the negotions, which it said amounted to formation of a “cartel.”
“If granted, the request would harm consumers, lead to less competition and less innovation and set a troubling precedent,” Apple stated. END UPDATE.