Nilson Report

Issue 1193 | Mar 2021


Companies featured in this issue include:

Top U.S. Merchant Acquirers—Ranked by Transactions in 2020

Transactions at the Top U.S. Acquirers 2010-2020

Merchant Acquirers in the U.S.—Ranked by Mastercard/Visa Volume

Card-Not-Present Acquiring in the U.S.

Mastercard/Visa Share of Purchase Volume at Top Acquirers

Top 10 Merchant Acquirers in the U.S.—Ranked by Purchase Volume and Transactions

Investments & Acquisitions—February 2021

Card-Not-Present Acquiring in the U.S.

The 34 largest U.S. acquirers of payment card transactions from online merchants are ranked based on their business in 2020. The five largest are listed here.

1. Chase
18.11 billion transactions
2. Wells Fargo
8.35 billion transactions
3. FIS
4.15 billion transactions
4. Elavon
0.68 billion transactions
5. Santander
0.11 billion transactions

Full access to the Card-Not-Present Acquiring in the U.S. results is available when you subscribe to the Nilson Report.



Affirm’s BNPL Debit Card

Affirm is the first buy now, pay later provider to announce a BNPL-linked debit card. The product will be available this year. The company is offering a waiting list to interested consumers who will be able to use the card to pay upfront from their own bank account. They will also be able to use an app-based feature to set up installment payments post-purchase. A $2,500 daily transaction limit will apply to the card. 

Affirm positions its debit card for everyday spending, while its BNPL feature is more appropriate for large purchases that would otherwise be made with a credit card. It is expected that the debit card will be linked to other products in Affirm’s portfolio, including its savings account. 

The company has not announced a bank or card network partner for the debit card. Affirm’s primary banking relationship has been with Cross River Bank. 

Visa has previously partnered with Affirm to issue virtual one-time-use cards for app-based BNPL payments.

Affirm reported 4.5 million active customers in the second quarter of its first full fiscal year, up 52%. Gross merchandise volume of $2.10 billion increased 55% from the prior year. 


Michael Linford is CFO at Affirm in San Francisco,,

Prior issues: 1183, 1179, 1168, 1149, 1129, 1091, 1052, 1123, 1120, 1100, 1095, 1078, 1075

© Copyright 2021 Nilson Report

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