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Tesco Bank has announced a partnership with payments provider MasterCard to develop its digital payments offering.
The retailer’s banking arm will be utilising the deal with MasterCard to develop more innovative digital payments capabilities for its customers, such as payments via mobile.
Tesco Bank's digital wallet and group payments strategy director, Mark Loch, said the company wanted to make shopping at Tesco as simple as possible, “whether that's in store, online or on your mobile device”.
“This agreement with MasterCard will allow us to utilise the expertise of both organisations to ensure paying at Tesco couldn't be easier,” he said.
As a feature of the partnership, Tesco Bank is aiming to focus on aspects such as mobile and digital payments, payments security, ease of payments, and a consistent experience regardless of the channel consumers use to interact with the brand.
Tesco Bank customers can already pay across the UK using Apple Pay, as long as they are Tesco Bank MasterCard credit card owners, and contactless phone payments still allow consumers to collect loyalty points when used in conjunction with a Tesco Clubcard.
Like any store that accepts contactless payments, many Tesco retail stores accept Apple Pay payments from shoppers making a transaction, something customers are increasingly beginning to expect.
But Tesco Bank recently launched a trial for its own smartphone payment application called PayQwik, which will allow customers to register their bank cards and pay using their mobile in Tesco stores, regardless of whether their smartphone has internet access.
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“Tesco has recognised how important mobile and digital payments are for customers,” said MasterCard UK and Ireland president Mark Barnett. “As today's shopper's shift between online, mobile and in-store transactions depending on the circumstances, this partnership will strengthen Tesco's payment offerings with new, safe, secure and convenient solutions for customers.”
Recent research revealed that many consumers now expect to collect loyalty points through their mobile devices, and a representative from MasterCard claimed this would be a natural progression for any application designed by Tesco’s own teams.
MasterCard’s representative said: “This partnership will seek to identify new digital acceptance and payment solutions for customers. Tesco Bank customers collect Clubcard points and we recognise how important this is, so naturally we will consider them in any new payment solution.”
By developing its own application with built-in payments and loyalty points, Tesco could incorporate other capabilities it knows its customers want. The supermarket has recently been investing in innovation through participation in events such as the IC Tomorrow Future Retail Contest, while it also decided against selling analytics arm Dunhumby.