Discover Inks Global Acceptance Pact with UAE Card Network (May 7, 2013)
Discover Financial Services has signed a deal with Network International to enable acceptance of the Dubai-based company’s Mercury Network cards around the globe. Under the agreement, Mercury cardholders will be able to make payments and access cash over the Discover, Diners Club International, PULSE and other partner networks, paving the way for acceptance in more than 185 countries and territories. The companies said they also are planning to explore “future opportunities to partner on other products and services.” Network International’s Mercury Network cards debuted in the United Arab Emirates in April with a prepaid payroll card for unbanked workers.
The Network International partnership marks the latest in a string of regional alliances Discover has forged over the past several years to expand its global footprint. In December 2012, Discover announced it would open its acceptance network to Shanghai’s UnionPay, one of the world’s largest payment card networks, with more than 3.2 billion cardholders. In March, Discover inked a deal with Interswitch Limited, Nigeria’s largest integrated payments processor, to enable Discover and Diners Club acceptance at Interswitch-enabled POS terminals and ATMs throughout that country. Discover also has regional partnerships in Japan, Korea, Serbia and India, among other markets.
“By partnering with regional payment networks, such as Network International, Discover is able to leverage its assets to grow volume and increase brand awareness in places like the U.A.E., one of the fastest-growing economies in the world,” said Diane Offereins, executive vice president, payment services, Discover. “We’re also providing our partners with customized solutions to help them achieve global reach and address localized preferences.”