Portorož, 21 June 2012 – On the 20th anniversary of the Activa card system, the Grand Hotel Bernardin in Portorož on 21 June hosted a business conference on trends and innovations in card operations. At the conference, Activa representatives gave a historical account of the intensive growth of the card system from its creation to the present day. The conference was also attended by numerous guests from the cashless operations segment whose lectures set the main theme of the conference – mobile payment innovations and technological development of contactless card payment.
The intensive development of card operations started in Slovenia in 1991, when the Activa payment card pilot project comprised 300 points of sale and 1,000 cards. No more than one year later, Banka Koper presented to the domestic public the first Slovenian payment card – Activa and then attracted cooperation from other large Slovenian banks. Over the years the system has grown and developed. Today it includes 12 Slovenian banks and savings banks that have to this day produced over 1.25 million cards, accounting for a 30% market share in terms of cards issued in Slovenia and a 45% market share in terms of card transactions. The Activa system also boasts a high market share in all installed POS terminals in Slovenia – 38%.
“A look into the past reveals how long and development-intensive a path we have travelled. From the first pioneering days, when a group of enthusiastic bankers in Slovenia launched the first magnetic stripe payment card, to the professional card system that offers the citizens of Slovenia state-of-the-art authentication when shopping online or using e-banking services. Furthermore, the Activa system has recently issued the first contactless payment card with a radio frequency antenna for communication with other devices. Such development inspires us with optimism that in the future we will provide Slovenia with the most advanced technologies for secure cashless payments,” said Rado Grdina, member of the Management Board of Banka Koper in charge of business support .
The turning point in the development of the card system was the merger of two operational centres – Banka Koper and Privredna Banka Zagreb into the joint payment card business company Intesa Sanpaolo Card, which predominantly provides for the development of card operations of foreign subsidiary banks from the Intesa Sanpaolo Group and the Activa system banks.
The main theme of the conference was mobile payment innovations that are the future of cashless payments. Nicola Laera, the representative of Visa Europe, and Andreas Hemberger from MasterCard Europe each in their own words gave an account of the achievements and solutions in mobile payments and other applications of contactless technology. Both agreed that trends could not be avoided and that mobile reality was knocking on the door. Contactless cards, which are still gaining ground in many countries around the globe, are at the moment a very popular method of card payment among users. At the same time, mobile contactless payments are quickly paving the way, representing a step forward in the development of contactless payments.
Additional Information: Samo Uljan, Head of Marketing Communications Team at Activa, tel. 05 666 2563, firstname.lastname@example.org