Why Mastercard Is Powering Contactless Payments In Poland

August 31, 2017

Poland has been hard at work burnishing its image as a tech hub over the last several years. A country in which financial services were largely reinvented in the 1990s after the fall of communism, Poland’s banks have digitized and otherwise embraced technology in the delivery of banking and payments services. Poland is also one of the world’s more active markets for contactless payments.

Today, Poles carry 29.4 million contactless payment cards in their wallets, which account for over three-quarters of cards issued. There are over half a million contactless POS terminals in Poland, which account for about 91 percent of all payment-accepting terminals nationwide.

A study recently commissioned by Mastercard reported that 61 percent of Poles would like to be able to use mobile payments anywhere, including in small convenience stores, at stalls, marketplaces, etc.

Their wish, more or less, is Mastercard’s command. This fall, Mastercard will roll out a pilot program in Poland that will make it possible for micro merchants and SMBs to enable cashless payments, with a Samsung smartphone (and an app) acting as the only necessary device for accepting those payments.

“We want to make it so that any Samsung device can turn that phone into a mobile point of sale without any dongles or peripherals attached,” James Hicks, EVP, Global Acceptance and Solutions at Mastercard, told PYMNTS during a conversation shortly after the program was announced.


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