June 24, 2021

Mastercard (MA) Rolls Out Premium Debit Card With SBM Bank

Mastercard Incorporated MA and SBM Bank India have collaborated to launch SBM World Debit Card, a premium and exclusive card. This card will be custom-built and offered to SBM Private Wealth customers on request.

The SBM World Debit Card will club niche banking solutions and carefully curated lifestyle privileges including some of the finest shopping and dining opportunities.

The card comes with highest security standards like superior fraud detection and decision intelligence features, which detect, resolve and prevent fraud issues rapidly.

Customers can spend/withdraw money with this card in any foreign currency with 0% foreign currency mark-up fee.

The launch of this card will allow Mastercard to penetrate the Indian market. The card processor is already in a tie-up with SBM Bank. Earlier this year, the bank and Mastercard together offered real-time business-to-consumer transfers via the Mastercard Send.

India is a big market for Mastercard given its rising middle class and working population as well as a large chunk of  young demography, which are comfortable using debit/credit cards. However, Mastercard is losing its market share in India with the domestic low cost competitor Rupay delving deeper into the market, backed by the Indian government.

Even in the credit/debit card space, Rupay held a 58% market share in terms of the number of cards issued in 2019, up from a mere 0.3% in 2013, mainly owing to government support. Visa Inc. V and Mastercard are no longer the dominant players in the card market in India, which also is losing its dominance to UPI in the Digital Payments space.

Mastercard, however, remains bullish on the Indian market and is committed to invest $1 billion in the country over the next five years despite the ongoing Covid-19 challenges. The proposed investments, which will be added to the $1-billion investment that Mastercard made in the Indian market over the last five years, will focus on building digital payment infrastructure and providing more technological innovation in the digital payments space.

This major payment facilitator is promoting the use of contactless remittance methods in India. The company perceives online payments to gain traction not only through plastic cards but also via smartphones, which is taking off in a big way.

Apart from contactless procedures, Mastercard sees tokenization as a key driver as digital payments surge in the Indian market.

Mastercard is also quite upbeat about e-commerce transactions with 68% of consumers polled in India believing that there will be less on-store shopping in the future. A spurt in online shopping will fuel the usage of debit/ credit cards and other forms of digital payment methods, which bode well for Mastercard.

In six months’ time the stock of Mastercard has gained 44.9% compared with the industry’s growth of 33.8%.

Mastercard carries a Zacks Rank # 3 (Hold), currently.  Some better-ranked stocks in the same space are Evertec Inc. EVTC and Green Dot Corporation GDOT, both carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) at present. Earnings of Evertec and Green Dot surpassed estimates in the last reported quarter by 18.75% and 38.71%, respectively.

You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

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