Nilson Report

Issue 1221 | Jun 2022


Companies featured in this issue include:

Europe’s Global Network Cards—Market Shares in 2021

Europe Global Network Cards—2021 with change vs. 2020

Market Shares of Purchase Transactions 2001-2021

Commercial Bank Credit Cards in Canada—Visa and Mastercard

Commercial Bank Credit Cards in Canada—Cards by Product

Investments & Acquisitions—May 2022

Europe’s Global Network Cards—2021 with change vs. 2020

Credit, debit and prepaid cards issued in Europe with Visa, Mastercard, American Express and Diners Club brands generated $4.217 trillion in purchase volume in 2021. On a local currency basis this was an increase of 22.1% over 2020.

$2.441 trillion, +16.2%
$1.684 trillion, +32.0%
American Express
$0.086 trillion, +18.2%
Diners Club
$0.005 trillion, +11.4%

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Worldline Payments in the Metaverse

Should it come to fruition, the metaverse (an immersive online virtual world), which operates in Web 3.0, will need a way for people to make card, account-to-account and cryptocurrency payments to businesses. Worldline, the fourth largest merchant acquirer in Europe, has created a virtual showroom inside Decentraland, one of the virtual worlds currently comprising the metaverse, to explore what real-world payment services for virtual consumers (avatars) could look like. 

The Sandbox and Meta’s Horizon Worlds are other operational worlds in the metaverse. Decentraland and The Sandbox, which are decentralized metaverses, currently utilize only cryptocurrencies for payments for virtual assets. Users must hold the cryptocurrency prior to making a payment.

Decentraland has its own cryptocurrency, called Mana. Worldline is operating under the premise that Mana is sufficient for virtual asset transactions inside Decentraland, but that retailers will require the ability to transact in fiat currencies to grow commerce in the metaverse. 

Worldline’s metaverse showroom is in the Crypto Valley district of Decentraland. It includes a Worldline-branded social and event space, a coffee corner that carries the branding of Payone, Worldline’s joint venture with Germany’s Sparkassen-Finanzgruppe (DSV), a stand devoted to a featured merchant of the month, which gives users the opportunity to purchase real goods in a virtual environment, and a charitable giving platform.

Right now, a Swiss-made espresso machine is the only item for sale by the merchant of the month. Buyers from Switzerland and Liechtenstein can make a payment using a Visa or Mastercard card or using the Swiss payment app Twint. They receive a 15% discount and next-day delivery. Payments can also be made with public cryptocurrencies. Bitcoin Suisse is the partner for WL (Worldline) Crypto Payments. Payments in Bitcoin, Ethereum or with Bitcoin Lightning are initiated via QR codes. 

Currently, a purchase in Worldline’s virtual showroom takes place outside the metaverse. Consumers are presented with a familiar Web 2.0 ecommerce interface. Worldline’s goal is to create APIs that keep transactions inside the metaverse, while handling all security and fraud processes consumers and regulators expect outside of it. In time, a Web 3.0 checkout page will be available.

Worldline plans to add a chatbot to its metaverse showroom in July to learn from users about their checkout experience. One likely option from Worldline is to offer white-label stores to merchants and/or the ability to rent virtual real estate for shops in the metaverse. The company is still experimenting with revenue models. 

Worldline supports 1.2 million merchant outlets in Europe and recently acquired a majority interest in ANZ Group’s merchant portfolio, the largest in Australia. 


Sascha Münger is Metaverse Expert at Worldline in Zurich,,

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