Nilson Report

Issue 1149 | Mar 2019


Companies featured in this issue include:

Top Acquirers in the U.S.

Investments & Acquisitions—February 2019

U.S. Acquirer Totals—2018 Ranked by Purchase Volume and Purchase Transactions

Top Merchant Acquirers in the U.S.—2018 Ranked by Visa/Mastercard Volume

Card Not Present (CNP) Acquiring in the U.S.—2018

Merchant Acquirers in the U.S. 2018—Ranked by Visa/Mastercard Volume

Based on Visa and Mastercard credit, debit, and prepaid purchase volume processed in the United States, the 5 largest merchant acquirers are listed here.

1. Chase Merchant Services, Texas
$1,041.95 bil. V/MC volume, +15.0%
2. Bank of America, Georgia
$684.57 bil. V/MC volume, +6.2%
3. Worldpay, Ohio
$655.59 bil. V/MC volume, +5.3%
4. Wells Fargo, California
$421.19 bil. V/MC volume, +23.9%
5. Global Payments, Georgia
$333.84 bil. V/MC volume, 3.4%

Full access to the Merchant Acquirers in the U.S. 2018—Ranked by Visa/Mastercard Volume results is available when you subscribe to The Nilson Report.



Cardlytics Offers Targeted Rewards

Cardlytics is a digital advertising platform with a scale roughly 80% as large as that of Google and Facebook in the U.S. when measuring connections to the adult population. The consumers connected to Cardlytics have credit or debit card accounts at financial institutions, which see card-linked offers as rewards programs. Based on their card spending history, cardholders receive targeted offers from advertisers. These initiatives build in-store traffic as well as online sales for restaurants, retailers, subscription services, and other merchants. 

Since its launch in 2008, Cardlytics has had steady success signing payment card issuers, including Bank of America, which ranks as the 3rd largest issuer in the U.S. based on combined credit card and debit card purchase volume, PNC, SunTrust, BB&T, Regions, BBVA, and processors FIS and Fiserv. At year-end 2018, more than 2,000 financial institution card issuers were connected to Cardlytics. However, Cardlytics’s biggest effort in recent years has focused on building its network of advertisers. The company says it now has the largest network of advertisers among any vendor that provides card-linked offers. And Cardlytics offers them access to the largest pool of cardholders. 

That cardholder pool recently expanded through partnerships with Chase, which launched in the fourth quarter of 2018, and Wells Fargo, which will launch later this year. Chase is the largest U.S. card issuer based on combined credit and debit card spending. Chase Offers is its new card-linked program. Cardholders find deals on the Chase Mobile app and through emails. When they pay with their card in-store, online, or via digital wallets, the credit is automatically applied to their account. 

Wells Fargo, the 4th largest U.S. card issuer based on combined credit and debit card spending, will launch with Cardlytics later this year. 

Currently, there are more than 100 million monthly active users on the Cardlytics platform. Over the course of a year, the average cardholder of a Cardlytics financial institution client sees 20 offers via mobile banking, online banking, or email. Typically, an offer provides 10% cash back on all purchases. 

By the end of 2019, Cardlytics expects to reach up to 150 million monthly active users. Cardlytics says advertisers receive $5 in revenue for every $1 spent in advertising. 

Cardlytics expanded to the U.K. with Lloyds in 2013 and Santander in 2014. 

Scott Grimes is CEO at Cardlytics in Atlanta, Georgia,,

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