MasterCard Worldwide Engages Major Merchants in New Zealand First
Inaugural MasterCard Merchant Advisory Group Meeting in Auckland
Auckland, 14 December 2007 - MasterCard Worldwide is enhancing communication channels with merchants in New Zealand with the launch of the New Zealand Merchant Advisory Group.
The group, which comprises a number of top-tier New Zealand merchants from a range of industry sectors, will meet twice a year enabling them to provide their feedback and opinions on the future of the New Zealand payments industry, in an open forum.
MasterCard Worldwide has set up equivalent groups in a number of markets around the globe in an effort to ensure that MasterCard branded products and services are adequately meeting the needs of those merchant communities.
Stuart McKinlay, country manager, New Zealand, MasterCard Worldwide, said the New Zealand payments market is evolving rapidly and MasterCard is eager to ensure that merchants have a say in its development.
“We are serious about the New Zealand market, having opened a New Zealand office earlier this year - a sure sign of the increasing importance and sophistication of the market.”
McKinlay said, “We only have to look at overseas markets to assess the extent to which the New Zealand market is set to evolve. Card programmes such as Debit, MasterCard® PayPass™, Pre-paid and Low Interest, have been welcomed by cardholders and merchants alike and are all providing a convenient and economical alternative to conventional payment methods.”
“We want to ensure that when these products are launched locally, merchants are abreast of the key features of these card programmes and have a full understanding of the role they will play as part of their business and the payments system as a whole. We want merchants to know that ultimately these card programmes will help increase their bottom-line sales.”
McKinlay also said a new specially-designated website for New Zealand merchants has been launched and is designed to provide merchants of all sizes with a raft of reference information to keep them up-to-date with changes and developments in the payments industry, which specifically affect them.
The new site, www.mastercardmerchant.co.nz, also provides details on MasterCard’s range of data protection products and features as well as information on chip acceptance and MasterCard branded products available in other markets.
The inaugural MasterCard Merchant Advisory Group session included merchants such as Air New Zealand, McDonald’s and Progressive Enterprises.
"The MAG is important to Air New Zealand. It allows an exchange of information and a discussion of the issues that affect merchants with other merchants and MasterCard, which is unique in the New Zealand marketplace," said Steve Hayden, manager, financial risk, Air New Zealand.
To date, MasterCard Merchant Advisory Group meetings have been held in Australia, Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom, with meetings also planned in other markets in 2008.
About MasterCard Worldwide
MasterCard Worldwide advances global commerce by providing a critical economic link among financial institutions, businesses, cardholders and merchants worldwide. As a franchisor, processor and advisor, MasterCard develops and markets payment solutions, processes over 16 billion transactions each year, and provides industry-leading analysis and consulting services to financial institution customers and merchants. Through its family of brands, including MasterCard®, Maestro® and Cirrus®, MasterCard serves consumers and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories. For more information go to http://www.mastercard.com.