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Established 1996
Monday 16 December 2019


Payments Awards 2019

Barclaycard and UnionPay sign payment partnership

Written by Peter Walker

Barclaycard has signed a new card acceptance partnership with UnionPay International, a subsidiary of China UnionPay.

The deal will enable its 110,000 UK merchants to accept UnionPay through a phased roll-out that will begin this summer.

UnionPay has the world’s largest cardholder base, and is the preferred payment brand for many Chinese visiting the UK as well as increasing numbers of global cardholders.

The UK is expecting a boost in visits from China in 2019, with Visit Britain indicating that bookings are up 31 per cent from January to June this year compared to the same period in 2018. Visitors from China are some of the UK’s highest spenders, spending on average £2,059 each per visit, more than three times the all-market visitor average.

Rob Cameron, chief executive of payment acceptance at Barclaycard, said: “We have invested in our payments platform so that our merchants can seamlessly accept the different payment options that their customers want to use.

“China is one of the UK’s most valuable inbound visitor markets, and this deal means our UK merchants will be able to better serve Chinese and global consumers who choose UnionPay as their preferred payment method when shopping online or in-store.”

Wei Zhihong, UnionPay International’s market director and head of its European branch, added: “The UK remains a strategically important and growing market for UnionPay and, with Chinese visitors set to increase, today’s partnership will enable them to more easily and conveniently shop at a much greater number of British merchants.”

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