Tue, Dec 12, 2017 - Page 12 News List

PCSC seeks to boost non-cash payments to 25%

CARD SERVICES:The move supports a plan by the government to increase electronic payments, but may also boost transaction revenue, the company said

By Kuo Chia-erh  /  Staff reporter

A 7-Eleven store clerk and a model at a promotional event in Taipei yesterday demonstrate a mobile phone app transaction. The convenience store chain is collaborating with Cathay United Bank to develop electronic payment options.

Photo: Yang Ya-min, Taipei Times

President Chain Store Corp (PCSC, 統一超商), the operator of the nation’s largest convenience store chain, yesterday said it aims to increase its non-cash payment penetration from 18 percent to 25 percent next year by launching credit card payments at its outlets nationwide.

PCSC is scheduled to finish the installation of credit card machines at its 1,700 7-Eleven stores in the greater Taipei area by the end of this year through a collaboration with Cathay United Bank (國泰世華銀行), it said.

PCSC, which has nearly 5,200 outlets in Taiwan, would expand card payment services to all of its local stores in January next year at the earliest, the company said.

The effort to promote credit card services comes as the company seeks to provide more payment options to Taiwanese customers, PCSC president Ray Chen (陳瑞堂) told a news conference in Taipei yesterday, adding that electronic payment services have begun to gain wide acceptance in the nation.

So far this year, PCSC has seen transactions via non-cash payment methods — such as icash cards, Alipay (支付寶) and Apple Pay — total more than NT$26 billion (US$866.15 million), a 20 percent increase from the same period last year, company data showed.

The company’s latest move was also in line with the government’s target of increasing use of electronic payments to 90 percent of overall transactions by 2025, Cathay United Bank president Alan Lee (李偉正) said.

Apart from satisfying customer demand, the convenience store chain’s ongoing project to popularize credit card services also aims to boost transaction revenue at its outlets.

Average revenue per transaction via credit card payments is expected to be six times higher than via cash payments, as people prefer to buy big items without paying cash to avoid risks, Chen said, citing preorder products and high-priced home appliances offered at 7-Eleven stores.

PCSC declined to give a detailed sales target for its non-cash payment sector, but said it would cooperate with more local banks to broaden its credit card services over the coming year.

From January through last month, PCSC saw its cumulative revenue increase 2.32 percent to NT$184.22 billion from NT$180.04 billion during the same period last year — a rise that it primarily attributed to stable growth in its core business.

PCSC shares gained 0.18 percent to close at NT$276 on the main board before the announcement yesterday.

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