EMV card issuance jumped by more than 27 percent in 2014 over the previous year, with key growth coming from the United States and China, according to ABI Research.
The firm said on Thursday (Aug. 6) in a statement that the EMV issuance was up a sizable 187 million units in the United States last year, and China logged 685 million units over the same period.
It should be noted that the two countries drove the bulk of activity in the year. ABI said that if China and the U.S. were excluded from the calculations, the year-over-year shipment growth would be ratcheted down to just over 6 percent.
The heady numbers are destined to be short-lived, according to the research firm, as the U.S. and China are likely to reach “saturation points,” and then the annualized shipment numbers will settle into a range of 500 million to 700 million units, with only a few countries remaining globally to adopt EMV.
In the statement announcing the latest survey results, ABI Research’s Phil Sealy, a senior analyst, noted, “Although future growth for EMV card volumes may be limited, other revenue avenues are opening.”
“All the major players including Gemalto, Oberthur Technologies, Giesecke & Devrient and Morpho are balancing strategies in a bid to address next-generation opportunities,” Sealy added.
The analyst continued: “From a payments card perspective, contact-to-contactless migration is a natural step in next-generation EMV migration. But to ensure continued volume growth, vendors have to balance next-generation strategies with one targeting new greenfield opportunities in cost-sensitive regions including India, the Philippines and Indonesia. Although there may be an overriding trend in contactless and higher end DDA and/or CDA adoption, it’s important to maintain a broad product portfolio to ensure vendors can address both the emerging and established opportunities.”