Barclaycard

Headquarters: 
United Kingdom

While contactless retail payment in the UK has been slow to take off, don’t blame Barclaycard or its parent Barclays PLC.

The UK’s largest credit-card issuer, Barclaycard has carried the British rollout on its shoulders since it spearheaded the London launch in September 2007 with its dual application OnePulse card. The issuer has since added a contactless interface to more and more of its card portfolio, and two years after the launch had an estimated 2 million contactless credit cards in circulation.

That is well above such competitors as the Royal Bank of Scotland. And it has backed up the millions of pounds it has spent on infrastructure with millions of pounds more worth of advertising and other promotion.

Parent Barclays announced in January 2009 it would begin converting most of its base of debit cards to contactless and predicted it would have more than 3 million of the cards in circulation by the end of the year. Although, by October 2009, the bank indicated it had issued only over 1 million contactless debit cards. As of February 2010, Baclaycard and Barclays had issued over 6 million contactless cards, said the bank.

And Barclaycard has signaled a clear intent to take a lead in the rollout of NFC mobile payment. In March 2009, the issuer announced a partnership with mobile operator Orange UK to launch NFC services. That followed a widely quoted, if quixotic, prediction by Barclaycard CEO Andrew Jenkins in September 2009 that cards would become as obsolete as checks in five or 10 years. The partners in January 2010 launched a contactless credit card, with mobile alerts.

Barclaycard in January 2011 announced with UK telco Everything Everywhere, which is a joint venture between Orange UK and T-Mobile UK, that they plan to launch NFC-based mobile payment by early summer. Barclaycard earlier participated in a well-publicized NFC trial launched in Nov. 2007 led by operator O2 and involving Transport for London.

Key figures: 
Card Count  Cards
Total credit and debit cards  25
Contactless cards (May 2011)  11.6
Contactless cards (Feb. 2010)
 6
In millions. Contactless takes in Barclaycard credit and Barclays debit cards.
Key NFC Personnel: 
Tom Gregory, head of digital payments
James McDonald, head of strategic innovation
Major NFC and Contactless competitors: 

Lloyds, Royal Bank of Scotland, HSBC

Last Updated: 
May 2011
Author: 
Balaban

HEADLINE NEWS

Boston Transit Authority Makes Aggressive Move to Eliminate Cash in Planned Fare-Collection System

NFC TIMES EXCLUSIVE Insight – The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, or MBTA, in Boston plans to completely do away with cash fare payments on its various transport modes when it rolls out its massive new fare-collection system, an MBTA official told attendees during a recent virtual conference.

Israel Launches Nationwide Mobile-Ticketing Scheme; Moovit, Others Provide Apps

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Israel this week launched a nationwide mobile-ticketing system, enabling riders to pay for trips on buses and later on railways, with the charges assessed at the end of each month.

In-Depth: Networks Developing New Uses for SoftPOS, Though Questions Remain about Interoperability and Costs of Technology

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – While the idea of letting merchants use their own NFC-enabled smartphones and tablets as acceptance devices to take contactless EMV payments is still getting off the ground, some major payments networks are already working on expanding the technology to enable consumers to tap their own devices to pay.

Planned Account-Based Ticketing Project Remains on Track in Queensland; Expected to Give Customers More Ways to Pay

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – The new account-based ticketing system under development for the Australian state of Queensland remains on track and on budget to be fully rolled out by 2022, despite the challenges of working through the Covid-19 pandemic, Martin Bradshaw, project head and general manager for passenger transport strategy and technology for transit agency TransLink, told NFC Times through a spokesman.

Insight: Taiwan’s Dominant Fare-Collection Service Struggles to Stay Competitive in Changing E-Payments Landscape

NFC TIMES Exclusive – EasyCard Corp. remains the dominant contactless stored-value card in Taiwan, boasting of market shares above 70% in transit fare payments and retail transactions nationally amid competition from three other contactless closed-loop cards that vie for transit and low-value retail transactions across the island nation.

In-Depth: California Transport Group Launches Mobile Ticketing, Plans MaaS Rollout

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Officials in California’s Central Valley have launched an app that enables users to buy mobile tickets for bus and rail rides with seven mostly small public transit agencies, with plans to expand to ticketing for electronic car and bike sharing, along with on-demand ride-sharing and van-pool services.

UPDATED: Google Pay Launches with Fintechs in 10 New Countries, as Search Giant Unveils Revamped App; Deeper Move into Financial Services in U.S.

Nov 19 2020

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Google Pay has added its first new countries in 18 months, all of them in continental Europe and all counting digital banks and other fintechs as the vast majority of the issuers across the 10 new markets.

Transport for London Prepares for Major Fare-Collection System Contract

Nov 18 2020

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Transport for London, which runs the largest open-loop fare payments system globally, has issued a notice that it is preparing to seek proposals for a major upgrade of its revenue-collection system.

Visa and Mastercard See Continued Growth in Contactless Usage

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Both Visa and Mastercard say contactless transactions made up a growing share of all face-to-face transactions for cards and other credentials bearing their brands during the last fiscal quarter, crediting in part an increasing aversion to cash by consumers because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Contactless usage rates, however, had been increasing by nearly the same rates before the pandemic.

Apple Pay Enables Ventra Closed-Loop Fare Card in Chicago after Long Delay

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Apple has finally made good on plans to enable fare payments through Apple Pay with the closed-loop Ventra card from the Chicago Transit Authority, or CTA, the latest major closed-loop card the tech giant has enabled in recent months.

Visa Rolls Out SoftPOS technology as It Seeks to Promote Acceptance of Contactless by More Small and Micro-Merchants

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight -  Visa is rolling out what it calls “Tap to Phone” technology to 15 global markets, as it seeks to enable millions of small and micro-merchants that now mainly take cash to also accept contactless EMV credit and debit cards and credentials on NFC devices.

Trip-Planning Apps Moovit and Transit Enable Ticketing and Payments for Another Transit Agency

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Multimodal trip-planning apps Moovit and Transit have introduced ticketing and payments in their apps for another North American transit agency, following an emerging trend for trip-planning apps to enable users to plan, book and pay for their rides all in one place. The app providers are offering the extra service as they seek ways to give users a better mobility-as-a-service experience.