MasterCard’s Debit Centre of Excellence has been awarded the prestigious Chairman’s Award at the Lafferty European Credit Card and Consumer Finance Awards 2004, held in Barcelona. The Award was announced at last week’s special award ceremony and was presented by Michael Lafferty to Ann Camarillo, MasterCard’s chief debit officer.
The Annual Lafferty Awards recognise the industry’s leading players from processors to issuers, as well as the most dynamic and innovative newcomers, and their achievements over the last 12 months. The Chairman’s Award, one of the most prestigious of the categories, is being made to MasterCard for, in Michael Lafferty’s words, ‘its proactive stance to lead the market rather than follow.’
‘This recognition reflects the conclusion of the International Cards and Payments Council, which last year recognised MasterCardÂ´s decision to build a Centre of Excellence for debit to be both timely and prescient,’ said Michael Lafferty. ‘The debit card, too long thought of as nothing more than an alternative to the cheque, lags 30 years behind the credit card in terms of development. Its profitability and cost/income dynamics can and should be managed more effectively.’
‘Banks need to take the credit cards disciplines and use them to manage their debit cards. This will challenge transfer pricing issues and force banks to decide whether the debit card is a product in its own right, or just a feature of the current account.’
Speaking on behalf of MasterCard’s Debit Centre of Excellence, Ann Camarillo, chief debit officer said, ‘As the global reach and scope of the payments industry have increased, so too has the pressure on banks to create further opportunities through debit. It is our aim, with the Centre of Excellence, to provide the ideal catalyst for our customers, uniting experience, skills and knowledge to help them maximise their debit success. ‘
‘In the last 12 months alone, we have made huge advances in acceptance channels and locations, introduced a number of new products and tools and launched the new MasterCard SEPA Licence (Single European Payment Area). MasterCard and the Debit Centre of Excellence will aim to fulfill its commitment as the Best Business Partner to all our customers and we are pleased to accept this Award for the recognition it gives to the achievements we have made in meeting our customers’ needs.’
About MasterCard’s Debit Centre of Excellence
MasterCard’s global Debit Centre of Excellence (DCE) is based in Waterloo, Belgium. It was established following the merger between MasterCard International and Europay International in June 2002. The aim was to bring together debit specialists from Europay and MasterCard to work with debit teams around the world for the benefit of their local customers.
MasterCard debit brands – MaestroÂ®, debit MasterCardÂ®, CirrusÂ® and MasterCard Electronic’ already enjoy a strong position globally, with over 520 million Maestro cards in circulation. The Debit Centre of Excellence works to take advantage of the worldwide growth in debit usage, while ensuring that MasterCard financial institutions have the most appropriate suite of debit programmes to allow them to capture new market share and compete against alternative payment methods.
In doing this, the Centre functions as a hub for global, regional and country-specific initiatives, sharing experience and best practices from around the world, and working with individual regions and countries to produce customised plans.
The DCE’s mission is: ‘To be the world’s leading provider of debit programmes by providing the best solutions to meet the needs of our members and their customers.’
Maestro, MasterCard’s online, PIN-based global debit brand, continued to grow in 2003, with the Maestro brand mark now appearing on more than 520 million cards worldwide, a 13.8% increase over year-end 2002. Maestro is accepted for purchases at more than 10 million merchant terminals in 93 countries and territories, and at over 900,000 MasterCard, Maestro, and Cirrus ATMs around the world.
About MasterCard International
MasterCard International is a leading global payments solutions company that provides a broad variety of innovative services in support of our global members’ credit, deposit access, electronic cash, business-to-business and related payment programs. MasterCard International manages a family of well-known, widely accepted payment card brands including MasterCard, Maestro and Cirrus and serves financial institutions, consumers and businesses in over 210 countries and territories. The MasterCard award-winning Priceless advertising campaign is now seen in 96 countries and in 47 languages, giving the MasterCard brand a truly global reach and scope. For more information go to www.mastercardinternational.com.