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Paymark network RWC ready – but retailers need to be alert

Media Release

Date: 7-Sep-11

Paymark network RWC ready – but retailers need to keep an eye out

As tourists from all over the world arrive en masse for the Rugby World Cup, Paymark is advising that its network is ready to handle the increased payment activity, but reminds merchants that due to the diversity of international card types and the way they are processed, there will be a few things to keep an eye out for at the point of purchase.

“With over 95,000 international visitors either on their way or here already, this is an exciting time for the New Zealand retail industry. These visitors will come with a wide variety of card types, and it’s important our retailers are aware that they are not all processed in the same way as New Zealand issued cards,” says Simon Tong, Paymark CEO.

“There are a few things that are particular to how we do business in New Zealand. One example is the way international scheme debit cards (Visa/Mastercard) are processed. Unlike in New Zealand where you use the cheque/savings button when using your debit card, visitors with these cards will need to push the credit button to complete their purchase,” he adds.

Merchants also need to be aware that:

- International visitors cannot get cash out with their EFTPOS purchases (using debit or credit cards), they will need to use an ATM

- If an international visitor attempts to use their credit or debit card at an “EFTPOS only” store (i.e. one who cannot process credit cards) their transaction will be denied.

“We’ve done a huge amount of work ensuring that our network will comfortably handle the volume of transactions expected during the RWC. In the last two years over 100,000 EFTPOS terminals have been upgraded to ensure that they are in-line with global security requirements, but not every possible transaction type can be catered for due to some New Zealand specific requirements,” adds Simon Tong.

To make sure that merchants have support for any queries that may arise, Paymark is increasing its Customer Care Help Desk staffing levels for the duration of the Cup. The Customer Care Help Desk is available 24-7 and can be contacted on 0800 PAYMARK (0800 729 627).

Chief Executive of the New Zealand Retailers Association, John Albertson, says he is delighted to hear that Paymark is making extra resource available to help retailers during this busy time and echoes the need for patience when it comes to dealing with the variance in card types and any anomalies they may encounter.

“Most New Zealand retailers have had experience processing cards from overseas and will already know of these issues, but with the sheer volume of transactions we expect to see during the RWC, there are bound to be a few unusual queries. Having completed the terminal upgrade process earlier in the year, we are pleased that Kiwi retailers are security compliant and confident that the right systems and processes are in place should retailers have any issues,” concludes Mr. Albertson.

About Paymark:

In November 2009, Paymark celebrated a significant business, retail, and economic milestone with the celebration of its 20th birthday. Since its inception in 1989 when three banks came together to form Electronic Transaction Services Limited (now known as Paymark Limited), Paymark has grown to become an integral part of New Zealand’s economic landscape with arguably the best EFTPOS system in the world.

Quick facts:

- By March 1990 volumes through the network exceeded 1 million transactions a month

- In 1994 the company increased its computer processing power to accommodate volumes exceeding 10 million transactions a month

- 28 August 1996, Paymark makes history by installing an off-shore EFTPOS terminal at a general store, Scott Base, Antarctica

- In 1998 Paymark passed another milestone as the 1 billionth EFTPOS transaction was processed

- More than 74,000 merchants and 116,000 terminals are currently connected to the network that is now 3DES and EMV compliant. Today, the Paymark network processes over 75% of all electronic transactions in the New Zealand retail market on behalf of more than 50 card issuers and acquirers.


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