Payment by Card Still on the Rise

PayLife Reports Marked Increase

(PresseBox) ( Wien, )
Despite the begin of an economic crisis, 2008 was once again a successful year for PayLife. For Austrian consumers appreciate the convenience of cashless payment more and more. This is reflected by the continually increasing number of transactions and total turnover generated by the 9 million payment cards issued by PayLife. In total, PayLife processed 944.8 million transactions, which amounts to an increase of 6.9% as compared to the previous year. The transactions totalled 33.1 billion euros (an increase of 6.3%), 16.6 billion euros of which were from Point of Sale payments (an increase of 7.9%).

"We can look back on 2008 with complete satisfaction. PayLife achieved strong growth in credit card sales with an increase of approximately 6%. We were able to increase the number of prepaid products sold by 55% and today have a total of approximately 60,000 PayLife Prepaid Cards," says a very pleased Peter Neubauer, CEO of PayLife.

"We have achieved much with the terminals as well. 16,000 NEXT GENERATION PayLife Bankomat POS terminals have already been put into operation, and each day countless more are installed." To date, PayLife has introduced 106,000 POS terminals to the market, 16,000 of which are NEXT GENERATION PayLife Bankomat POS terminals, 15,000 at vending machines and 75,000 of which were Bankomat POS terminals of mature technologie. The latter will be exchanged step by step to NEXT GENERATION PayLife Bankomat POS terminals until end of 2010, to conform to the Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA).

Increase in Transactions and Turnover

There were once again significant increases in the products serviced by PayLife, both in terms of the number of transactions (Trx) as well as the turnover:

Credit cards issued and serviced by PayLife
- MasterCard & Visa Transactions + 10% Turnover + 12.2% = 3 billions euros
- Maestro Transactions + 9.9% Turnover + 7.1% = 3.5 billions euros
- Cash Withdrawals Transactions + 5.5% Turnover + 5.3% = 17,8 billions euros

Cards growth

The amount of PayLife credit cards shows again a clear increase. By end of 2008 780,000 PayLife credit cards are in circulation, a plus of 5.7%.

Important New Contracts in 2008

Since June 2008, the guests in all the McDonald's restaurants in Salzburg (5), Innsbruck (4) and Klagenfurt (4) as well as in 6 restaurants in Vienna, are now able to pay for their orders at the cash register using cashless, and therefore electronic, payment. By following this international trend, McDonald's once again emphasizes their role as an innovator in the food service industry. A further success for PayLife in the past year was the conclusion of an acceptance contract for credit cards at Spar and Eurospar. As market leader PayLife ever and successfully makes an effort for increasing the acceptance points for cashless payment in Austria, and to enlarge the convenience for cardholders.

PayLife International Business

In addition to the PayLife customers in Slovenia, 2008 also brought activity in the Czech Republic, Hungary and Slovakia. Plans have been made for 2009 to enter the market in further Central European countries.

Outlook for 2009

Due to the negative economic prognoses, it is very difficult to predict the consumer behavior for the coming year. Nevertheless, the trend towards cashless payment will continue. According to all the market research studies, the consumer will turn to plastic money even more often in the future, not least because of the longer payment time offered by paying with PayLife credit cards. PayLife therefore expects an increase in transactions with payment cards of 7 to 9% for 2009.
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