Mastercard Doubles Down on Digital Payments for Immersive Commerce

Mastercard executives

PYMNTS asked business leaders for their take on how to plan for the rest of 2023, and what they are telling their teams to focus on. Mastercard EVP, U.S. Market Development, North America Chiro Aikat and SVP, Digital Partnerships, North America Tim Montgomery said their focus is on digital payments.


Chiro Aikat:

We are experiencing a seismic shift in how we pay and get paid. Cash is no longer king and over the past few years, we’ve seen a significant acceleration in people’s acceptance of digital payments. Whether we look to the next quarter or the next decade, we expect to witness significant innovations that will shape the future of commerce, transform how we think about exchanging goods and services, and deliver intelligent experiences. Our teams at Mastercard are focusing on how this will play out across two areas: creating immersive commerce journeys and investing in digital payments.

First, we’re thinking about creating immersive and frictionless commerce. Digital commerce has transformed how we shop, pay and engage with brands and is an integral part of our lives. With the arrival of better connectivity and emerging technologies, we can imagine next-gen commerce creating intelligent consumer journeys that weave in and out of digital and physical worlds. Our digital solutions today — including Click-to-Pay, installments and tokenization — can support customers as they prepare for a future of intelligent experiences, and we’re focused on building even more robust digital infrastructure to support customers as the world evolves. One example of this is through open banking, which is helping us build new networks to enable consumers to leverage their data for services. We are prioritizing acceleration, expansion and growth around the world.

Second, we’re focusing on investing in digital payments. Digital payment usage is continuing to rise. Following the pandemic, 85% of people said they used at least one emerging digital payment, according to a global consumer survey of 35,040 respondents in 40 countries conducted by the Harris Poll and Mastercard. We’ve built a robust digital infrastructure with a suite of acceptance and payment services. However, the physical, digital and virtual worlds will continue to blend. That will lead to hyper-personalized, tech-enabled commerce experiences. We are continuing to invest in scaling our digital infrastructure so consumers can seize its opportunities ahead, while navigating risks.

Tim Montgomery:

As Chiro mentioned, since the start of the pandemic, people all over the world have become increasingly reliant on trusted digital services that are simpler, more seamless, and instantly available. Mastercard makes it a priority to equip people and organizations across the ecosystem with the networks, tools and solutions they need to realize their full potential and propel digital payments forward. Meeting these demands requires collaboration, which is why Mastercard prioritizes partnerships. We see ourselves as an ingredient for innovation, and we collaborate with a diverse range of companies around the world, from FinTechs to governments and non-governmental organizations, to create disruptive products and solutions that break the status quo.

One area I have directed my team to focus on with our partners is embedded finance, which is about meeting the consumer or business where they are and making it simple to transact, allowing for differentiation and increasing customer loyalty. For example, we’re collaborating with Uber to provide drivers with instant access to their earnings via the app. We’ve also partnered with Instacart to make it even easier for consumers to access and apply for credit cards — right where they already spend their time. These solutions add value by improving the user experience while also increasing efficiencies for platforms, technology companies and financial institutions.

Another area we’re focusing on with our partners is commercial payments, at both embedded payments and industry levels. According to Mastercard’s Business Payments 2022 study, companies are increasingly recognizing the advantages of digitizing business payments, which include more data, more control and more automation.