Financial Cards and Payments in Western Europe

March 2023

Electronic direct/ACH and card payments continue to take share from paper transactions in Western Europe, while mobile m-commerce continues to be the most dynamic area of this region’s payments market. The pandemic served to further encourage contactless and digital payments, providing extra impetus to many governments’ drives towards creating cashless societies.

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This report comes in PPT.

Key findings

Debit the leading type of card for Western Europeans

The regional performance was muted in 2022, with declines seen in a number countries, given the difficult economic backdrop, with high inflation rates putting pressure on households’ disposable incomes. Debit cards remain the most popular type of financial card, while m-commerce continues to record the most dynamic growth rates.

BNPL gaining in popularity in the region

Since the start of the pandemic, electronic payments have benefitted from the rising share of e-commerce in retail sales in Germany, giving emerging online payment players a growing platform. These include BNPL players such as the fintech Klarna, offering consumers an easy and convenient option to pay in instalments, often without an interest rate. The introduction by PayPal, the country’s leading online payment player, of a BNPL option will help further push this service into the mainstream.

Dynamic Turkish market, as financial inclusion grows

A rapid expansion of the banking population has turned Turkey into a breeding ground for financial innovation, with start-ups, fintechs and payment gateways setting up banking and payment tools in the country. This is being bolstered by the alignment of Turkish regulations with the EU’s Payment Service Directive 2, which is designed to encourage cross-collaboration in payments and provide a better-integrated infrastructure for electronic payments.

UK consumers keen on contactless payments

Tech-savvy local consumers in the UK are increasingly favouring the use of contactless technologies, which was given further impetus during the pandemic. The increase in the number of contactless smart cards being issued, the development of the payment infrastructure and the contactless limit reaching GBP100 per transaction in the UK, which is higher than the average EUR50 in other European markets, are helping to facilitate the expansion and quick adoption of contactless payment methods.

Key findings
Western Europe is one of the less dynamic regions for growth in card payment transactions
Positive growth in every year except pandemic-hit 2020
Western Europe has the third highest personal payment transactions value
High inflation rates hitting consumer spending in 2022
Germany the clear leader in electronic direct/ACH transactions in the region
Debit cards most popular in Western Europe
Proximity mobile payments expected to overtake remote mobile payments in 2022-2027
Turkey the most dynamic market for electronic direct/ACH transactions
Debit cards record the most new value in Western Europe
UK adds the most new value in 2017-2022
Debit cards dominate card payment transactions in the region
Extremely concentrated card operators competitive landscape
BNPL increasingly popular in the UK
Visa and Mastercard present across the region
Mastercard and Visa look to break the dominance of DK in German debit cards
Healthy growth rates expected for card payment transactions over 2022-2027
Strong growth expected for open-loop pre-paid cards in Turkey over the forecast period
Personal paper payment transactions will continue declining
Growth expected for personal card payment and electronic direct/ACH transactions
Strong growth expected for m-commerce over 2022-2027
Mobile m-commerce proximity will overtake remote payments in 2022-2027
Austria: Market Context
Austria: Competitive Landscape
Austria: M-commerce and Consumer Payment Value
Denmark: Market Context
Denmark: Competitive Landscape
Denmark: M-commerce and Consumer Payment Value
France: Market Context
France : Competitive Landscape
France : M-commerce and Consumer Payment Value
Germany: Market Context
Germany : Competitive Landscape
Germany : M-commerce and Consumer Payment Value
Greece: Market Context
Greece : Competitive Landscape
Greece : M-commerce and Consumer Payment Value
Italy: Market Context
Italy : Competitive Landscape
Italy : M-commerce and Consumer Payment Value
Netherlands: Market Context
Netherlands : Competitive Landscape
Netherlands : M-commerce and Consumer Payment Value
Norway: Market Context
Norway : Competitive Landscape
Norway : M-commerce and Consumer Payment Value
Portugal: Market Context
Portugal : Competitive Landscape
Portugal : M-commerce and Consumer Payment Value
Spain: Market Context
Spain: Competitive Landscape
Spain: M-commerce and Consumer Payment Value
Sweden: Market Context
Sweden: Competitive Landscape
Sweden: M-commerce and Consumer Payment Value
Turkey: Market Context
Turkey : Competitive Landscape
Turkey : M-commerce and Consumer Payment Value
UK: Market Context
UK: Competitive Landscape
UK: M-commerce and Consumer Payment Value

Consumer Finance

This is the aggregation of ATM, charge, credit, debit, e-purse and retail cards. Note that smart cards are not included in financial cards.

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