Samsung & Visa, Two Worldwide Olympic Sponsors, Join Forces to Enable Mobile Payments

Pioneering alliance to bring mobile payments to the UK and around the world in the run up to and during London 2012

LONDON--()--Samsung and Visa today announced plans to bring the latest innovation in payment technology to the market as part of their sponsorships of London 2012, enabling consumers to make mobile payments using the Samsung Olympic and Paralympic Games mobile handset. Before and during the Games, the innovation will transform the payment experience in London and globally, enabling faster, more convenient payments via mobile phone.

Samsung and Visa’s new strategic alliance is designed to leave a lasting legacy in the market post-2012.

Samsung Electronics, the Worldwide Olympic Partner for Wireless Communications Equipment, and Visa, the Worldwide Olympic Partner and exclusive Payment Services sponsor are combining their sponsorship assets and leadership in technology to ensure that the Olympic and Paralympic Games mobile handset available to the general public will be equipped with technology that enables mobile payments, Near Field Communications (NFC) and Visa’s contactless payment technology. To make payments, customers simply select the Visa mobile contactless application, select pay and hold the phone in front of a contactless reader at the point of purchase.

Visa is working with banks and retailers worldwide to roll-out acceptance for Visa contactless cards, as well as mobile phones, as part of an industry wide roll-out of contactless technology. In London there are already more than 60,000 locations where contactless payments are accepted and contactless and electronic card payments will be available in the run-up to and during the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. With the momentum to commercialise mobile payments globally, consumers will be able to make mobile contactless payments in the run up to and during the Games in many countries around the world.

Samsung and Visa will work together to provide the contactless enabled Olympics handset to Visa and Samsung sponsored athletes as part of this initiative. Samsung and Visa also plan to make the handset available for consumers to purchase through mobile network operators and other distributors. A Visa-enabled SIM card will be required for use with the device in order to make purchases at retailers who have the contactless payment system.

“Visa, like Samsung, shares the vision of leveraging our Olympic and Paralympic Games sponsorship to leave a lasting legacy in the market for banks, retailers, mobile operators and consumers. We are not only breaking new ground for Olympic partnerships, we are committed to enabling consumers to connect with mobile and contactless payments technology for 2012 and beyond,” said Peter Ayliffe, CEO of Visa Europe. “We look forward to working with financial institutions and mobile operators alongside Samsung to make this initiative a success.”

“Innovation is a key business driver for Visa and mobile payments are one of the main areas we're focusing on. The Olympic and Paralympic Games enables us to accelerate our business goals and this partnership plays a large role in achieving them,” said Mariano Dima, Executive Vice President of Marketing and Payment Solutions at Visa Europe.

Samsung and Visa are committed to enabling consumers to create meaningful connections with the Olympic and Paralympic Games and enjoy a better, smarter life through the leading mobile payment technology. Samsung has demonstrated its leadership in NFC-enabled phone technology, since it launched one of the first commercial NFC phones in France in 2010. It then unveiled the industry’s first Android phone equipped with NFC capabilities last year, followed by the NFC-enabled bada smartphone, introduced at the Mobile World Congress 2011.

“As a pioneer in mobile technology, Samsung is striving for long term change in the way we use mobile payments. In London next year, we regard the greatest show on earth as the perfect opportunity to showcase how this technology can make a positive difference to people’s lives - enabling them to feel closer to the Olympic and Paralympic Games. This mobile payment device will be available in the UK initially, and we plan to expand the service to other countries in Europe and around the world where contactless payment facilities are available in the near future,” said Seokpil Kim, President & CEO of Samsung Electronics Europe.

Gyehyun Kwon, Vice President & Head of Worldwide Sports Marketing, Samsung Electronics added, “This marks the very first partnership between two Worldwide Olympic Partners of the London 2012 Games. We are delighted to be joining forces with Visa to make the Olympic Games more accessible and convenient for everyone. This fits extremely well with our ambition to enable more people to participate in the Games through our smart technology.”

Visa and Samsung will work with mobile network operators, financial institutions and retailers around the world to bring the convenience, security and reliability of Visa’s contactless technology to mobile users worldwide. Currently, Visa mobile payments are being rolled out in countries across the globe including Australia, Canada, Czech Republic, Brazil, France, Hong Kong, Italy, Malaysia, Poland, Singapore, Spain, Slovakia, Switzerland, Turkey, the UK and the United States.

- Ends -

NOTES TO EDITORS

About Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.

Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. is a global leader in semiconductor, telecommunication, digital media and digital convergence technologies with 2010 consolidated sales of US$135.8 billion. Employing approximately 190,500 people in 206 offices across 68 countries, the company consists of eight independently operated business units: Visual Display, Mobile Communications, Telecommunication Systems, Digital Appliances, IT Solutions, Digital Imaging, Semiconductor and LCD. Recognized as one of the fastest growing global brands, Samsung Electronics is a leading producer of digital TVs, semiconductor chips, mobile phones and TFT-LCDs. For more information, please visit www.samsung.com

About Samsung’s Involvement in the Olympic Games

Samsung began its Olympic Games involvement as a local sponsor of the Seoul 1988 Olympic Games. Beginning with the Nagano 1998 Olympic Winter Games, the company extended its commitment to the Olympic Movement as the Worldwide Olympic Partner in the Wireless Communications Equipment category, providing its proprietary wireless communications program, called Wireless Olympic Works (WOW), and mobile phones. These innovative mobile phone technologies provide the Olympic Family with real-time information and communications services. Samsung also supports the Olympic Torch Relay and hosts the Samsung Mobile Explorers to share the excitement of the Olympic Games with people around the world and enable everyone to participate in the Games through its smart mobile technology. Samsung’s commitment as a Worldwide Olympic Partner continues through to Rio 2016.

About Samsung’s Involvement in the Paralympic Games

Samsung is a Worldwide Partner of the IPC in the category 'Mobile Telecommunications'. The partnership was launched on the eve of the Torino 2006 Paralympic Winter Games, which Samsung supported as an Official Games Partner for the first time ever.

About Visa Europe

In Europe, there are 427 million Visa debit, credit and commercial cards. In the 12 months ending December 2010 those cards were used to make purchases and cash withdrawals to the value of €1.6 trillion. 12.5% of consumer spending at point of sale in Europe is with a Visa card, and more than 70% of that is on Visa debit cards.

Visa Europe is owned and operated by more than 4,000 European member banks and was incorporated in July 2004. In October 2007, Visa Europe became independent of the new global Visa Inc., with an exclusive, irrevocable and perpetual licence in Europe. As a dedicated European payment system it is able to respond quickly to the specific market needs of European banks and their customers - cardholders and retailers - and to meet the European Commission’s objective to create a true internal market for payments.

Visa enjoys unsurpassed acceptance around the world. In addition, Visa/PLUS is one of the world’s largest global ATM networks, offering cash access in local currency in over 200 countries.

For more information, visit www.visaeurope.com

About Visa Inc.

Visa is a global payments technology company that connects consumers, businesses, financial institutions and governments in more than 200 countries and territories to fast, secure and reliable digital currency. Underpinning digital currency is one of the world’s most advanced processing networks—VisaNet—that is capable of handling more than 20,000 transactions a second, with fraud protection for consumers and guaranteed payment for merchants. Visa is not a bank, and does not issue cards, extend credit or set rates and fees for consumers. Visa’s innovations, however, enable its financial institution customers to offer consumers more choices: Pay now with debit, ahead of time with prepaid or later with credit products. For more information, visit www.corporate.visa.com.

About Visa’s Involvement in the Olympic and Paralympic Games

Visa is proud to be a worldwide partner of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Visa plays an integral role in the Games, having been a committed sponsor for 25 years. Visa Europe is also the presenting partner of Team 2012 – 1,200 British athletes who are striving to compete at the Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2012. This is the first time that such a large group of athletes has been supported in this way. At every Olympic and Paralympic Games, Visa creates and manages the entire payment system infrastructure and network throughout all Games venues. Visa has been a worldwide Olympic Games sponsor since 1986 as well as a worldwide sponsor of the Paralympic Games since 2002 and is the exclusive payment card and official payment network of the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

About NFC and contactless technology

The mobile phone is as ubiquitous for consumers as their wallet, so it is logical that the mobile phone and payments industries should come together to realise this next stage in mobile evolution. During the last twelve months, there has been significant progress towards mobile payments becoming a reality, as manufacturers standardise technology, numerous mobile payment trials are successfully completed and contactless technology starts to gain mainstream acceptance.

Visa’s offerings take advantage of a wide range of new technologies. Phones equipped with Near Field Communication (NFC) technology make it possible for the devices to initiate Visa contactless transactions. The advent of phones that support next generation high speed networks can enable near real-time transaction alerts for added levels of security, fast and convenient purchases via the mobile internet, and deliver retailer offers tailored to life style and location. These developments have inspired Visa, mobile operators, handset manufacturers, and banks to work together to incorporate payment as a mobile application.

Photos/Multimedia Gallery Available: http://www.businesswire.com/cgi-bin/mmg.cgi?eid=6666576&lang=en

Contacts

Visa Europe
Abbie Ferdinando
ferdinab@visa.com
+44 207 795 5291
or
Samsung Electronics.
Insun Song
is12.song@samsung.com
+ 82 31 277 8041
or
Visa Inc.
Andrew Woodward
globalmedia@visa.com
+ 1 415 932 2564
or
A&R Edelman
Lucy Bridgewater
lbridgewater@arpartners.com
+44 203 047 2219

Far Left: Sandra Alzetta Senior Vice President of Innovation and New product and Channel development 
Left Centre: Peter Ayliffe, President & CEO of Visa Europe 
Right Centre: Seokpil Kim, President & CEO of Samsung Electronics Europe 
Far Right: Gyehyun Kwon, Vice President & Head of Worldwide Sports Marketing, Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd (Photo: Business Wire)

Far Left: Sandra Alzetta Senior Vice President of Innovation and New product and Channel development Left Centre: Peter Ayliffe, President & CEO of Visa Europe Right Centre: Seokpil Kim, President & CEO of Samsung Electronics Europe Far Right: Gyehyun Kwon, Vice President & Head of Worldwide Sports Marketing, Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd (Photo: Business Wire)

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Contacts

Visa Europe
Abbie Ferdinando
ferdinab@visa.com
+44 207 795 5291
or
Samsung Electronics.
Insun Song
is12.song@samsung.com
+ 82 31 277 8041
or
Visa Inc.
Andrew Woodward
globalmedia@visa.com
+ 1 415 932 2564
or
A&R Edelman
Lucy Bridgewater
lbridgewater@arpartners.com
+44 203 047 2219