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  5. > Croatia%s Cards and Payments Industry: Emerging Opportunities, Trends, Size, Drivers, Strategies, Products and Competitive Landscape

Croatia%s Cards and Payments Industry: Emerging Opportunities, Trends, Size, Drivers, Strategies, Products and Competitive Landscape

  • January 2015
  • -
  • GlobalData
  • -
  • 96 pages

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Synopsis
Before the global financial crisis, the Croatian economy grew at a rate of 4–5% annually. However, the crisis impeded the economic progress and the country entered into its sixth year of recession in 2014. This had a direct bearing on the Croatian cards and payments industry.

Croatia became the 28th member of the European Union (EU) on July 1, 2013, and since has been trying to raise its competitiveness and is to benefit from EU funding to aid economic development and growth. Consequently, the government has undertaken labor, pension, social benefit and investment reforms, which are anticipated to stimulate employment opportunities. The privatization of large government-owned companies and access to EU funds are anticipated to provide support for the country’s economic recovery over the forecast period (2014–2018). However, the growth prospects for the cards and payments industry are anticipated to remain weak, until the economy re-enters a state of growth.

In 2013, credit transfer and direct debit were the most popular payment instruments with a combined industry share of 90.3% in terms of transaction value, while payment cards accounted for a share of just 2.2%. The use of cash is increasing and its share rose from 6.3% in 2009 to 7.5% in 2013.

In terms of the number of cards in circulation, payment cards (debit, credit and charge cards) declined marginally during the review period, recording a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of -0.39%, decreasing from 8.5 million in 2009 to 8.4 million in 2013. However, in terms of transaction value, payment cards valued HRK116.1 billion (US$20.3 billion) in 2013, after registering a review-period CAGR of 1.07%.

Improved banking infrastructure, new product developments, a higher awareness of electronic payments and the wider acceptance of payment cards at POS terminals were the main growth drivers. The adoption of Europay, MasterCard and Visa (EMV) standards, as well as the emergence of contactless technology, also supported industry growth.

In 2013, the Croatia’s average transaction value (ATV) was US$64.8, equivalent to ranking of 24th in the European region. Greece recorded the highest ATV of US$227.6, followed by Switzerland (US$156.6), Italy (US$140.4), Germany (US$131.5), Luxembourg (US$121.2), Ireland (US$106.4) and Romania (US$104.3). In terms of card penetration, Croatia had 1.88 cards per inhabitant in 2013, the eighth-highest figure in the region. Luxembourg with (4.43) had the highest penetration, followed by Norway (2.73), the UK (2.48), Sweden (2.38), Belgium (2.04), Turkey (1.95) and Switzerland (1.91).

In terms of frequency of use, Croatia recorded 36.9 transactions per card in 2013. Finland recorded 172.8 transactions per card and had the highest frequency of use, followed by Denmark (159.2), Estonia (149.4) and France (127.8).
In terms of transaction value, debit cards remained a popular payment card during the review period, growing from HRK82.1 billion (US$15.5 billion) in 2009 to HRK87.7 billion (US$15.3 billion) in 2013, at a review-period CAGR of 1.68%. The value is anticipated to grow to reach HRK115.7 billion (US$21 billion) in 2018, at a CAGR of 5.38%. Due to the European debt crisis and uncertain economic conditions, the majority of Croatian consumers became debt-cautious and preferred to use debit cards to make payments to track their expenses. Consequently, the debit cards market registered growth in terms of the number of cards in circulation, transaction value and volume during the review period (2009–2013). Transaction values at POS terminals gradually increased during the review period; a trend which is anticipated to continue over the forecast period.

Summary
The report provides top-level market analysis, information and insights into Croatia's cards and payments industry, including:

- Current and forecast values for each category of Croatia's cards and payments industry, including debit cards, credit cards, charge cards and prepaid cards

- Comprehensive analysis of the industry’s market attractiveness and future growth areas

- Analysis of various market drivers and regulations governing Croatia's cards and payments industry

- Detailed analysis of the marketing strategies adopted for selling debit, credit, charge and prepaid cards used by banks and other institutions in the market

- Comprehensive analysis of consumer attitudes and buying preferences for cards

- The competitive landscape of Croatia's cards and payments industry

Scope
- This report provides a comprehensive analysis of Croatia's cards and payments industry.

- It provides current values for Croatia's cards and payments industry for 2013, and forecast figures for 2018.

- It details the different economic, infrastructural and business drivers affecting Croatia's cards and payments industry.

- It outlines the current regulatory framework in the industry.

- It details the marketing strategies used by various banks and other institutions.

- It profiles the major banks in Croatia's cards and payments industry.

Reasons To Buy
- Make strategic business decisions using top-level historic and forecast market data related to Croatia's cards and payments industry and each market within it.

- Understand the key market trends and growth opportunities in Croatia's cards and payments industry.

- Assess the competitive dynamics in Croatia's cards and payments industry.

- Gain insights in to the marketing strategies used for selling various card types in Croatia.

- Gain insights into key regulations governing Croatia's cards and payments industry.

Key Highlights
- In terms of the number of cards in circulation, payment cards (debit, credit and charge cards) declined marginally during the review period, recording a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of -0.39%, decreasing from 8.5 million in 2009 to 8.4 million in 2013. However, in terms of transaction value, payment cards valued HRK116.1 billion (US$20.3 billion) in 2013, after registering a review-period CAGR of 1.07%.

- In terms of transaction value, debit cards remained a popular payment card during the review period, growing from HRK82.1 billion (US$15.5 billion) in 2009 to HRK87.7 billion (US$15.3 billion) in 2013, at a review-period CAGR of 1.68%. The value is anticipated to grow to reach HRK115.7 billion (US$21 billion) in 2018, at a CAGR of 5.38%. Due to the European debt crisis and uncertain economic conditions, the majority of Croatian consumers became debt-cautious and preferred to use debit cards to make payments to track their expenses. Consequently, the debit cards market registered growth in terms of the number of cards in circulation, transaction value and volume during the review period (2009–2013). Transaction values at POS terminals gradually increased during the review period; a trend which is anticipated to continue over the forecast period.

- PBZ launched the American Express Gift Card, the first prepaid card in the American Express portfolio of PBZ Card in 2012. Similarly, Hrvatska Poštanska Banka (HPB), in April 2013 launched a reloadable Visa prepaid card. The card can be used at home and abroad, and also to withdraw cash from automatic teller machines (ATMs) and at POS terminals. Also in May, the bank launched the Visa Prepaid Youth Card. The card is designed for young people aged 14 and above.

- Contactless cards were first introduced in Croatia in December 2012, with MasterCard PayPass first issued by Erste & Steiermärkische Banka. Contactless technology is being rolled-out by banks and card issuing companies for making payments using mobile phones. In July 2012, telecommunication provider, Hrvatski Telekom introduced mobile payment based on NFC technology, and in August 2014, PBZ, Intesa Sanpaolo Card and American Express announced that they have initiated a pilot to test mobile NFC payments. The emergence of contactless technology is expected to drive card-based payments over the forecast period.

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