Wednesday, February 24, 2016 : DEBIT CARDS WORK WELL FOR AUSSIE OPERATORS
Card processor says use of bookmaker-branded debit cards has soared six-fold.
Australian debit card issuer eMerchants has generated a significant amount of media coverage Downunder with its current report on bookmaker-branded debit card usage, which reveals that usage increased six-fold – from A$15 million to A$90 million – in the first half of last year.
The Sydney Morning Herald reported that most of the major Australian gambling groups such as William Hill, Ladbrokes, Crownbet, Bet365 and Sportsbet are now offering the facility to their players.
eMerchants chief financial officer, Bruce Stewart, told the newspaper that 40 percent of the money withdrawn to the cards from gambling operators is wagered again.
"That means for every $100 spent, $40 is coming back to the gaming platform," he explained.
The player pre-loaded cards can be used for deposits and withdrawals, but can also be used to access cash machines and other banking facilities.
The newspaper reports that eMerchants is currently busy negotiating further uses for the cards, emulating arrangements in the United States where some cards can be used through convenience stores.
A spokesman for Sportsbet, arguably Australia's biggest online gambling company, said the cards give customers the option of fast access to winnings.
"It is up to the customer how they withdraw their winnings – whether that is to their Sportsbet cash card or their personal bank account," he said.
Emerchants issues prepaid cards under an Australian Financial Services licence but is not an authorised bank. It relies on a partnership with Cuscal LImited and Heritage Bank to sell the cards.