Nilson Report

Issue 1178 | Jun 2020


Companies featured in this issue include:

Global Network Cards in 2019—Purchase Transactions

Global Network Cards 2019—Purchase Volume by Product

Global Debit and Prepaid Cards 2019

Global Credit Cards 2019

Global Network Cards in Circulation—with Market Shares

Global Network Cards 2019 vs. 2018

Market Share of Purchase Transactions on Global Network Cards

Largest Merchant Acquirers in Middle East and Africa—Ranked by General Purpose Transactions

Merchant Acquirers in Middle East and Africa—Ranked by Visa and Mastercard Transactions

Largest Merchant Acquirers in Middle East and Africa—Ranked by General Purpose Transactions

The five largest merchant acquirers in the Middle East and Africa region are based in Iran. All transactions handled by these companies are domestic-only Shaparak network card payments.

1. Behpardakht Mellat
5.68 billion purchase transactions
2. Saman e-Pay
4.82 billion purchase transactions
3. Parsian e-Commerce
3.80 billion purchase transactions
4. Asan Pardakht Persian
3.69 billion purchase transactions
5. Iran Kish Credit Card
2.37 billion purchase transactions

Full access to the Largest Merchant Acquirers—Ranked by General Purpose Transactions results in Middle East and Africa in 2019 is available when you subscribe to the Nilson Report.



American Express to Open Network Business in China

Earlier this month, Express Company, a joint venture between American Express and LianLian DigiTech Company, received an operating license from regulators in China to clear card transactions in mainland China denominated in renminbi. Express Company received approval from the People’s Bank of China in November 2019 after spending most of last year building the needed infrastructure. American Express hasn’t been given approval to issue cards or acquire transactions. 

Later this year, Express Company is expected to announce partnerships with banks, payment service providers, and digital wallet providers to issue commercial and consumer card products and acquire transactions from merchants. 

There are American Express cards issued in mainland China by ICBC, China Merchants Bank, China CITIC Bank, Bank of China, Shanghai Pudong Development Bank, and China Minsheng Bank. Those cards are used exclusively outside China including on overseas websites. 

Bank of China, ICBC, Bank of East Asia, Agricultural Bank, Ping An Bank, Bank of Communications, China Construction Bank, Alipay, and UnionPay acquire American Express card payments in China initiated by tourist and business cardholders from other countries.


Walter Liu is Chief Executive Officer at Express Company in Shanghai, China,,

Prior issues: 1169, 1148, 1143, 966, 950, 807

© Copyright 2020 Nilson Report

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