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Visa CEO Predicts 100 Million Contactless Cards in a Year

Digital Transactions

Visa Inc. has been talking up contactless payments lately, though its executives and spokespersons usually dole out percentages rather than hard numbers to describe what is still a minuscule market in terms of card numbers and transaction volume. But chief executive Alfred F. Kelly gave an eyebrow-raising statistic Wednesday regarding a predicted boom in contactless card issuance.

“The U.S. market is poised for significant contactless growth over the coming year,” Kelly said while discussing Visa’s financial results for the quarter ended Sept. 30 on a conference call with stock analysts. After noting how more merchants are turning on contactless card acceptance at point-of-sale terminals—about 70 of Visa’s top merchants now accept contactless cards, up by more than 20 in a year—he added: “On the issuing side, several of our largest clients will begin issuing contactless cards over the next few quarters. We expect that there will be over 100 million Visa contactless cards issued in the United States by the end of 2019.”


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