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Beyond the Transaction: Every Transaction Has a Story

MasterCard’s First-Quarter Financial Results: Solid Performance

Earlier today, we released our first-quarter financial results.  It was in line with our expectations when compared to last year’s very strong first quarter and continued challenges in the global economy. Overall, our revenue grew 8%, or 9% when adjusted for currency fluctuations. We saw a 12% increase in gross dollar volume, on a local currency basis, to $947 billion with an increase in processed transactions of 12%, to 8.7 billion. We also saw an increase in cross-border volume of 16%.

Those numbers give a good sense of where MasterCard is today, but they only begin to tell the story of how we’re driving a World Beyond Cash. If you’re a regular reader of this blog, you know this is an issue we are passionate about. I hope you saw the news on MasterPass that came out of Mobile World Congress. It’s the future of payments at MasterCard, providing a seamless, secure and speedy checkout regardless of where or how you’re shopping. MasterPass is available in Australia, Canada and the U.S. with more markets later this year.

It’s been a busy start to the year. From a personal standpoint, I had the opportunity to visit many of our offices around the world including trips to Brazil, Mexico, Dubai and several offices in Asia.  I always look forward to these trips, because not only do I get a chance to work directly with our teams around the world, but I get great insights into the payments landscape of a country through discussions with customers, merchants, telcos, and others, including government officials.

In Asia, I met a number of customers to hear how we can make our products and solutions even better.  In March, we signed an MOU with the Alibaba Group, Asia’s largest e-Commerce company. We also teamed up with Rakuten, Japan’s largest e-Commerce site, to provide their cardholders with virtual MasterCard prepaid cards for online shopping. Both are examples of great e-Commerce solutions that help drive cross-border traffic and increase our presence in Asia.

It was great to visit Dubai and get an update from our Middle East and Africa team. There’s a lot happening in those emerging markets, as evidenced by all the news coming out of our CEO’s visit earlier this year.  I was also pleased with our team’s work, especially in the recent deal with South Africa’s Nedbank shifting their business from a competitor.

Across the world, MasterCard continues to invest in initiatives that position our company for future growth. Our focus is clear: to drive the conversion of cash to electronic payments through technology and partnerships around the world in a secure and smart way.