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Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Interswitch attains MasterCard capability

Premier electronic transactions switching firm, Interswitch Nigeria Limited, has attained MasterCard acquiring and issuing capability outlines.

This would enable Nigerian banks on its secure network to issue MasterCard EMV debit and credit cards to their customers.

Validating this development, the Managing Director of Interswitch, Mr. Mitchell Elegbe, said that the solution would empower the banks to accept local and international MasterCard transactions on their e-payment channels, which include Automated Teller Machines (ATMs), Point of Sale (PoS) terminals and web.

“The solution leverages the banks Postilion Front-End-Processor for the issuance of MasterCard debit cards,” he said.

As said by Elegbe, Interswitch’s MasterCard Credit and Prepaid card solution is a hosted service, whereby Interswitch performs card management and transaction processing role, thereby reducing the banks huge investments in software, hardware, maintenance of the solution and infrastructure.

He recalled that in 2008, Interswitch was appointed as a MasterCard Member Service Provider (MSP), thereby allowing Interswitch to provide Third Party Processor (TTP) and Independent Service Organisation (ISO) services to the banks to meet all their MasterCard processing needs.

With this latest development, he noted that Interswitch has become the only payment switching platform in the country that processes more than one card scheme.

Interswitch platform accepts transactions from Verve card, Freedom card and MasterCard.

Elegbe further said the attainment of MasterCard acquiring and issuing capability is part of Interswitch’s way of creating more value for its partner banks as well as providing more choices for the cardholders in the country.

“This platform will provide our partner banks with additional sources of revenue through merchant charges and discounts. It will also enable these banks to accept both domestic and international cards on their ATMs and at merchant locations like hotels, restaurants and online shops,” he said.

He also informed that the MasterCard EMV cards issued by Nigerian banks on Interswitch platform would be accepted across over one million ATMs in over 210 countries and territories worldwide. The cards will allow bank customers to have access to either their Naira or Dollar accounts from within and outside Nigeria.

Nigerian banks that have already taken advantage of the cost effective hosted service for issuance and acquiring of MasterCard payment services include GTB, BankPHB, First Bank, Skye Bank, Ecobank and Unity bank among others.

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