Zapp reveals UK merchant partners
Zapp, a mobile payments initiative backed by banks in the U.K., today announced retail partnerships that will go into affect in 2015, according to a press release. Four of the most customer-focused and innovative retailers across a range of sectors lead the way in Asda, Sainsbury's, House of Fraser and Shop Direct, according to the announcement.
Other major retailers and billers partnering with Zapp include Thomas Cook, Clarks, Dune, Spar, Best Western, Starstock, QD Stores, Anglian Water, Bristol & Wessex Water, Sutton and East Surrey Water. Support for Zapp from the charity sector through Oxfam and Charities Aid Foundation has been previously announced, according to the press release. Additionally, many of the largest payment providers in the U.K. including Verifone, Klarna, Touch Go, Siemens, Apogee International, Vix Technologies, Global Charge, Just Desire and RSL have announced that they will work with Zapp to bring mobile payments to market.
Zapp is the biggest change in payments since the introduction of the Switch card in 1988. As well as broad retail support, and as previously announced, leading banks are supporting Zapp, including HSBC, first direct, Nationwide, Santander and Metro Bank. These banks provide current accounts to over 18 million people in the UK. Additionally, almost all major UK acquirers and Payment Service Providers, which represent hundreds of thousands of merchants, are supporting Zapp, including WorldPay, Elavon, Optimal Payments, SagePay, Realex, Secure Trading, TrustPay Global and Checkout.com. This breadth of support is unprecedented for a new payment method and demonstrates clearly the market demand for new and innovative ways to pay.
Zap said in the announcement that its core technology has been successfully built and delivered. Zapp is currently working with banks and retailers to integrate the technology into their systems. Pilots are now being planned ahead of a launch of Zapp in the first half of 2015.
Zapp will then invest in launching the brand in the U.K. market supported by the marketing efforts of its financial and retail partners, according to a press release. The launch will be underpinned by an awareness raising campaign from Zapp and its backers, supported by tens of millions of pounds in advertising and promotional activity. This will include a consumer education campaign, above the line advertising and promotional activity at the point of sale.
Peter Keenan, Chief Executive of Zapp, commented: "Today is a hugely significant milestone in the history of money in the U.K. At last the promise of a truly mobile and digital payment method will become a reality, meaning easier and more secure checkouts for millions. It's amazing to have the support of such well known retailers. Together with our other partners this means millions of consumers will be able to shop at tens of thousands of merchants up and down the UK at launch."