Viewpoints

Visa’s Blog – Visa Viewpoints

PERSPECTIVES ON DIGITAL CURRENCY

Jan 12, 2014

About Visa

Visa’s New Corporate Positioning

When I joined Visa 14 months ago, I knew a lot about the company and our business. However, in the short time I have been at Visa, I have learned a lot more about our history and, most importantly, our 55-year legacy of sustained value.

As any one of the almost 10,000 employees at Visa will tell you, I am passionate about continuing our growth by connecting to the ideals of our founders. For Visa to be successful, their simple aspiration: “to be the best way to pay and be paid” needs to drive everything and everyone at Visa. Half a century later, we added three words to our goal: “for everyone, everywhere.”

The launch this weekend of “Everywhere you want to be” brings our new ideals into focus for all our stakeholders. It is an opportunity to chart a path for the future of the company by reconnecting to the most relevant and resonant elements of our past.

“Everywhere you want to be” is much more than a tagline or advertising slogan. It marks an important milestone in the evolution of Visa. Thirty years ago, “Everywhere” was a restaurant in the United States. Today, thanks to advances in mobile and high-speed Internet, “Everywhere” is a mobile money system in Rwanda, an e-commerce merchant in California or a government prepaid card system in Brazil. In other words, our journey to ensure “Everywhere” is available to “Everyone” is well under way.

To achieve our goal, though, we need to engage with all our stakeholders equally. Dee Hock called Visa an “enabling organization” that works most effectively when all the interests of all the participants are balanced. Our global business is made up of billion of cards, tens of millions of merchants and nearly 15,000 financial institution clients around the world. We value all these relationships and the role they play. We are working hard to deliver greater value to all partners and part of that is how we communicate with them.

For the first time in our history, we are using all the communications tools at our disposal to reach everyone – consumers, merchants, financial institutions ,employees, business partners and government officials – with a unified message tailored to them.

In the coming days and weeks, you will see the “Everywhere” platform come to life through Olympic advertising.   Shortly after, we will be delivering “Everywhere” messages to our many audiences, through multiple channels, around the world.

I am very excited about today’s announcement. It’s an important new chapter in Visa’s history. I would like to thank everyone at Visa and beyond who helped bring this to life around the world.

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Posted by: Charles Scharf, Chief Executive Officer, Visa Inc. on January 12, 2014 at 4:28 pm

Aug 30, 2013

Correction of Inaccurate Media Reports Regarding Visa Organizational Changes

Today, a mobile trade publication erroneously reported innovation team changes at Visa.  Notably, the publication claimed that Bill Gajda has left Visa.  This is not true.

Bill Gajda has a broader role as Global Head of Strategic Partnerships and is managing Visa’s relationships with Mobile Network Operators, Device Manufacturers, and Platform Providers. As you know, under Bill’s leadership Visa has made significant strides advancing our mobile strategy globally and building strong alliances with leaders in the mobile industry including Samsung, Orange, MTN, and Vodafone.  Bill is reporting to Jim McCarthy who has recently been named Global Head of Innovation and Strategic Partnerships.   

Another inaccuracy in today’s reporting is the claim that Sam Shrauger is directly reporting to Visa President, Ryan McInerney. Instead, he is reporting to Elizabeth Buse, who has recently been named Global Executive, Solutions, a new global group  that was created to bring together product and client functions from across the company. In her expanded role Elizabeth is managing a global team with responsibility for implementing, managing and growing Visa’s wide range of solutions, including those for digital channels, processing services, information products and merchant sales and solutions, including CyberSource.

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Posted by: Lucas Mast, Visa Corporate Relations on August 30, 2013 at 10:59 am

Category: About Visa

Oct 22, 2012

A Look at Minimizing Our Environmental Impact

A core component of Visa’s Corporate Responsibility initiatives is our commitment to responsible business practices, as demonstrated through areas such as our governance, ethics and diversity. This work also extends to the world around us, as we take steps to understand measure and minimize our impact through environmental stewardship.

Our comprehensive environmental efforts continue to evolve since the formal launch of our Corporate Responsibility program in 2008. For each of the past four years, we have conducted an environmental audit of our operations to understand and identify the issues where we have greatest impact. In response, we have implemented initiatives aimed at our most material impacts, including efforts to reduce energy and water use, divert waste from landfills, ensure responsible paper usage and promote a culture of sustainability among our employees.

We are proud of our results to date. We have earned the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification for several buildings, including LEED Gold for new construction of a U.S. east coast facility, LEED Silver for new construction of a major data center and the prestigious LEED Gold for existing buildings, operations and maintenance (EBOM) for four office buildings we own at our headquarters campus in California. In addition, Singapore’s Building and Construction Authority (BCA) awarded our Singapore office with the BCA Green Mark GoldPlus Award, recognizing our adoption of green building technologies, achieving an outstanding sustainable environment and incorporating best practices in environmental design and office construction. Employees based in these offices represent a vast majority of our global employee population.

A few recent highlights of our efforts to minimize our environmental impact:

Energy

For a company like Visa, energy use is an area where we have the most opportunity—and have had the greatest results—to make a difference.  We continue to upgrade to more energy efficient office lighting (LED and fluorescent) in our buildings worldwide. We also have transitioned more conference room and office lights to motion sensors in 2012 throughout our buildings. In our Bay Area headquarters location, we have implemented a policy where at least 90% of new electronics must meet either Energy Star or EPACT certification standards.

Paper

At Visa, like most office-based companies, we use paper in the daily activities of our business. Recognizing the impact of paper usage on natural resources, we have aimed to reduce the overall amount of paper we use and to increase our use of paper with recycled content. Since we became a public company in 2008, our overall paper usage has decreased by 31%. In our fiscal 2011, paper with recycled content represented 96.5% of our total paper usage. Between fiscal years 2009 and 2012, 86% of our paper purchases have contained 35% recycled content or greater. In terms of third-party certifications, our paper sourcing catalog only includes options that are Forest Stewardship Council-certified. We also exclusively use FSC-certified paper for key publications such as our annual report and our Corporate Responsibility brochure.

Waste

Finally, we have implemented programs to divert waste from landfill wherever possible. In our U.S. office locations, environmentally responsible waste management programs allow us to compost and recycle waste to the fullest extent possible. We also use environmentally friendly disposable products in many places, including biodegradable cleaning products, compostable food service utensils and containers, as well as paper towels made from post-consumer recycled paper.

At Visa, we have taken a holistic approach to environmental stewardship. Today, we’re proud of the progress we’ve made to reduce our impact.

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Posted by: Douglas Sabo, Visa Corporate Responsibility on October 22, 2012 at 10:06 am

Oct 9, 2012

Pay another Visa card, anywhere, in real time

Every day, billions of dollars are exchanged between individuals, often across large distances. Whether it’s repaying a loan from a friend, sending pocket money to a child studying abroad, or moving money between your own accounts – person to person payments have become a part of everyday life.

In the past, one would have had to go through the hassle of filling out a complicated form or going to an agent to transfer money. What if you could send money easily online, or even through your mobile phone – without having to manage cash, fill forms or complete the transaction in-person?

This is now a reality for many people, simply by sending the payment to a Visa account. Over the Internet, through a mobile device or via physical self-service kiosks, consumers in 18 countries in Asia Pacific, Central Europe, Middle East and Africa are regularly making near-instant personal payments of varying amounts directly to Visa cards.

Today, 200 million consumers in 18 countries around the region can access simple and fast person-to-person payment services based on the Visa Personal Payments platform. Consumers are responding positively too: we’ve seen 89 per cent growth in transactions across the region between September 2011 and September 2012. Of these, about 10 per cent now originate from mobile devices – signaling a significant uptake for mobile-based payments.

With increasing numbers of people making use of the security and convenience provided by this platform, we hope to see this trend continue well into the future.

For more information, see our previous post or click here to read more about innovation at Visa.

 

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Posted by: Visa Corporate Relations Team on October 9, 2012 at 9:14 am

Jun 25, 2012

Visa Gets Some Respect

In Barron’s annual survey of the World’s Most Respected Companies, Visa made its debut at #13.  We are in great company – Apple, IBM and McDonald’s top the list along with other well-known companies.  Survey participants said strong management, sound business strategy, ethical business practices and product innovation were the most important characteristics of a respectable company.  We couldn’t agree more and that’s what motivates our 7,500 employees around the world every day.

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Posted by: Doug Michelman, Global Head, Corporate Relations, Visa Inc. on June 25, 2012 at 1:39 pm

Mar 13, 2012

No Coins Required: Card-Enabled Parking Meters Grow in Popularity Nationwide

A recent article in the Washington Post noted the installation of forty-one parking meters in Bethesda, Maryland, that now accept payment via credit and debit cards, rather than just cash.  This reflects a growing trend of card-enabled parking meters popping up all over the country, from San Francisco to Los Angeles to Washington D.C.  It also speaks to the larger migration from cash to digital currency in the U.S.  Since 2000, electronic payments (including card brands) have increased share of personal consumption expenditure from 20% to 32% (CY 2010).[1]

Smaller municipalities have jumped on the parking-meter bandwagon as well, and some with significant gusto.  Bethlehem, Pennsylvania (population 74,900), recently added 300 card-enabled meters to their existing 100, partly as a result of consumer demand as the new parking meters have been the top request of downtown shoppers, according to the manager of the Downtown Bethlehem Association.  The city has certainly taken note:  according to Bethlehem Parking Authority Executive Director Tom Hartley, “the increased meter rates have more than doubled the authority’s meter revenues…the first two months of 2012 brought in $218,474 compared with $106,670 last year.”

The new meters require a capital investment, but as shown, they can provide more revenue than traditional meters because they are equipped with sensors that detect when cars pull out of a parking spot to absorb any unused time.  For drivers, it means less hassle looking for change to feed hungry meters.   

It seems the new meters are a win-win for all parties concerned, and that’s the kind of progress we support.  Learn more about the ways Visa digital currency is innovating to make transit more efficient for governments and consumers at Currency of Progress.


[1] SEC filings and press releases for card brands and IHS Global insight for PCE

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Posted by: Albert Coscia, Visa Corporate Relations on March 13, 2012 at 2:30 pm

Mar 5, 2012

U.S. Department of Commerce White Paper Furthers Privacy Debate

A little over a year ago, the U.S. Department of Commerce issued a preliminary report on privacy.  That “green paper” has now ripened into a framework of specific recommendations aimed at protecting the privacy and use of consumer data while promoting global commerce innovations.

Last week, I joined the group at the White House for the release of the Framework and White Paper for protecting privacy and promoting innovation in the global digital economy.

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Posted by: Russell Schrader, Visa Chief Privacy Officer on March 5, 2012 at 2:10 pm

Mar 1, 2012

Fortune ranks Visa No. 1 in industry on Most Admired list

We’re proud to share the news that, today, Visa was recognized as No. 1 in its industry category of “Consumer Credit Card and Related Services” on Fortune’s prestigious Most Admired Companies ranking. 

Especially exciting is our No. 1 industry ranking in Innovation and Global Competitiveness. We’re working hard to lead in responsible payments innovation by delivering new products and services while keeping trust at the core of everything we do.  To that end, this week we announced a variety of mobile payments partnerships at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. We continue to advance in this space by building on our vast experience and strong and capable network to bring value and convenience to you, our customers and our partners globally.  You can keep track of our progress on this blog, or learn more about how we’re delivering the benefits of electronic payments worldwide in our new Perspectives on Progress series.

Check out more details on the list and methodology behind the ranking on Fortune’s website here.

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Posted by: Doug Michelman, Global Head, Corporate Relations, Visa Inc. on March 1, 2012 at 7:47 pm

Jan 26, 2012

A definitive information source on what makes global travelers tick, now available for download

Will the United States and United Kingdom continue to reserve the title of favorite holiday destinations of travelers in the next two years? Who are the world’s most generous travelers and how much does good food help in getting travelers to visit a country again?

The answers to these questions, and more, from the Visa Global Travel Intentions Survey 2011 report are available for download from today. In its sixth year, the report provides an in-depth look and analysis into international travel trends and travel behavior globally.
Interesting findings include:
• Indian travelers are leading the pack in terms of medical tourism, with 23 percent spending on healthcare and medical services while on holiday, compared to the global average of 11 percent.
• Apart from travelers from Hong Kong who still largely rely on travel magazines, the rest of the world’s travelers seek information online.
• Moroccans enjoy the longest breaks with 61 percent stating they plan to stay more than 20 nights while away on holiday.

To view the full findings and insights, download the Visa Global Travel Intentions Survey 2011 here.

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Posted by: Jag Mistry, Corporate Relations, Visa Inc. on January 26, 2012 at 2:51 pm

Nov 15, 2011

Visa’s Treasury Team Named 2011 Gold Alexander Hamilton Award Winner

We are very proud to share with you the news that recently, Visa’s treasury team was named the 2011 Gold Alexander Hamilton Award (AHA) Winner in Working Capital Management, presented by Treasury & Risk magazine.  Now in its 16th year, the awards program recognizes excellence in finance and treasury management and honors treasury units in top companies around the world.  While we always like to brag about our innovative teams here at Visa, we are always pleased when they are recognized by industry experts.

This year, our team earned the top place in this category for reducing Visa’s settlement liquidity expose through implementation of a new netting application which they submitted to the AHAs for consideration.  The application they developed which led to the win is one that allows Visa to consolidate payments to and from some of its largest financial institution customers without impacting their operations.

To put that in perspective, Visa operates a massive wholesale funds transfer settlement network – making and receiving over 2,000 payments daily from the financial institutions that issue our cards and pay merchants.  Given that total settlements top $3 trillion annually, the benefits from netting the payments of its largest clients and making or collecting just one payment daily for each financial institution would be huge.

The challenge for Visa treasury and IT was to enable a single net settlement transaction daily but keep the components of the settlement transparent to the FIs so that their legacy systems could continue to post them all as usual.  This meant reinventing the entire settlement process.  Visa treasury met its exposure reduction goal, and as a result, was also able to improve the company’s liquidity and working capital management.  This approach can also be used by others in order to net payments with counterparties even though the existing individual payments are with decentralized or unrelated business units within the counterparty.

Congratulations to our treasury group for their notable accomplishment.

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Posted by: Erica Harvill, Visa Corporate Relations on November 15, 2011 at 3:28 pm

Category: About Visa