Taking the pain out of payments
From October 2015, however, the retailer will be liable for losses on magnetic stripe cards. This will create a marked reluctance among retailers to accept anything but smart cards for cashless payments. Similar changes are expected to follow around the world and this is driving the rapid replacement of the hundreds of millions of cards in issue globally.
For the electronic financial markets alone, US market research and analysis firm Frost Sullivan estimates that the number of electronic inlays being issued per annum for use in payment cards will grow from about 180 million in 2010 to more than 1.3 billion in 2020. In the passport market the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), which is responsible for regulating passport use globally, envisages that all ICAO-compliant passports will be using this technology by 2020 – that’s a market of billions of passport holders around the world.
IMS Research forecasts concur. These put the number of financial payment cards in use around the world at roughly 11 billion by 2017 with about half of them smart cards. By that stage, one in every three new cards issued will incorporate contactless technology.
Rafferty says the company expects to be in full production at its Spiddal, Co Galway, base in 2013. “All of the main card issuers in the world will be our major customers. We also work with the card companies to resolve problems they might be experiencing in the manufacturing process. Our sales team have all been in the industry for a long time and know what the issues are and we have already got some very interesting projects to work on from the industry. Another major market for us is likely to be national ID cards.
“When these come in they will replace passports across the European Union and they will have to have the contactless technology. And the passport sector itself will be a major growth area – all 193 ICOA members will have to have compliant passports by 2020 and that means having a chip inlaid in them and our technology is already in use for that.”