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Beyond the Transaction: Every Transaction Has a Story
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Innovation in Payments: One Nerd’s Perspective

Payments technology is changing so fast, and along with that, consumers’ needs and desires are also changing. MasterCard knows it needs to innovate to remain relevant to consumers, and as a young professional (or YoPro as we’re called at MasterCard), I think it’s brilliant that I was tapped to be a part of our latest Innovation Express.

Innovation Express is an intense 48 hours, described as “speed-dating meets product development,” where we foster new ideas to pre-defined business problems. Three competing teams have to come up with a working prototype, a video demo, a sales deck and a business case…all in 2 days!!

As I headed out to Istanbul I wondered what lay ahead. I knew that it would be hard work but what I hadn’t banked on was the amazing experience that I would have. With a team of eight people with totally different backgrounds, opinions and ideas from all across MasterCard Europe and only the seed of an idea, there was a LOT to be discussed!! The guys from MCLabs named themselves as the geeks in the room which suited me fine – coming from a data analysis background I’m usually classed as the nerd! The end products from all 3 teams were brilliant and the hard work was worth it when we presented to a panel of executive judges and they made plans to move all of the concepts forward.

Unfortunately I cannot reveal the products we developed, but I am already impatient and personally believe that plastic is already old-fashioned (forget about cash!!). I cannot wait for mobile payments to become widespread so that I can get rid of my physical credit cards.  So rest assured that my colleagues and I are on it. Events like the Innovation Express are just one way that MasterCard is innovating and nurturing the creativity that exists within the organisation.

So are you like me, impatient and ready for the next innovation in payments?  Where do you think the future lies?