Russian Bank Looks to Grow via Prepaid Cards (Dec. 18, 2012)
Dec. 18, 2012
In a bid to serve a growing market demand and increase its customer base, Russia’s Svyaznoy Bank will issue its first large-scale prepaid card, the bank announced this week. The card will be available in versions branded by MasterCard and Visa, with Gemalto providing deployment and other card services. Svyaznoy already is one of the most widespread banking networks in Russia, with 35 branches in large cities, along with 3,000 financial service points throughout the country via its partnership with the larger Svyaznoy Group. The prepaid cards will be distributed though both networks and will be used as a hook to draw new customers, according to the bank.
“As Svyaznoy Bank grows quickly across Russia, we need a partner with the product breadth and high level of service to ensure that our new prepaid cards strengthen customer loyalty, attract new business and raise awareness of our company,” said Evgeniy Davidovich, deputy to the CEO of Svyaznoy Bank. While still largely undeveloped, the Russian prepaid market is a promising one, according to industry experts. Last year, Mercator Advisory Group listed the country as one of the top 10 markets for prepaid potential, alongside such countries as China, the U.K. and India.