CB, Visa and Mastercard: the bank card war scares merchants

“What is made in France is better if you pay for it in France. » For several weeks now, this slogan of the CB Bank Card Group, the national bank card payment network, has been displayed with one objective: to encourage consumers to use CB, which is celebrating its 40th anniversary and whose logo adopts the colors blue. -white-red for the occasion. A total offensive because, although it remains largely the leader, “for about ten years, our market share has been eroded,” acknowledges Philippe Laulanie, its general director. Today we are between 80 and 85%. »

But how can we explain such a decline? Most cards issued by French banks carry the CB logo and that of an American network, Visa or Mastercard. In this case, although the merchant and the customer can choose, transactions in France are mainly carried out through the CB network, while the international network takes care of the foreign one. Except that, for several years, the proportion of so-called Visa or Mastercard only cards (which, therefore, manage transactions only through these networks, even in France) has been increasing.

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