- WHSmith has a significant presence in the UK in airports, hospitals, train stations and on most high streets, and the Group has a growing international business with over 400 stores in 99 airports worldwide
Wirecard, the global innovation leader for digital financial technology, is collaborating with WHSmith, a leading global retailer in news, books and convenience for the world’s travelling customer. The two companies are working together to expand WHSmith’s digital payment acceptance capabilities for e-commerce as well as at the POS, thus furthering the retailer’s digital journey.
With over 1,600 stores across the world in airports, hospitals, train stations and highway service areas, as well as on most UK high streets, WHSmith is a globally recognized brand for the world’s travelling customer. The company also has a flourishing e-commerce business which includes click & collect and “Buy Online Return in Store” (BORIS) options for a flexible customer experience. Thanks to the collaboration with Wirecard, WHSmith is further improving its service to consumers both nationally and internationally by enabling smooth and flexible payment acceptance and processing.
“We are happy to collaborate with WHSmith to process their digital payments,” commented Fredrik Neumann, VP Sales Retail at Wirecard. “Through this cooperation with yet another major retailer, we are proving our ability to understand the needs of internationally-facing merchants and the retail sector as a whole, as well as significantly expanding our footprint in the UK market. We look forward to a successful cooperation with WHSmith.”
“We aim to deliver the best service to our customers, and that includes providing convenient and easy payment methods both online and in-store,” added Ian Sanders, Group Commercial Development Director at WHSmith. “We are pleased to be working with Wirecard who have offered a tailor-made solution to our business and deliver the latest payment acceptance solutions. We are excited to offer our customers an even more flexible checkout experience across our WHSmith stores and e-commerce shop.”
As a first step, over 900 UK stores will be equipped with China payment methods. The integration benefits Chinese customers, who can now pay in WHSmith stores as if they were in their home country, without having to exchange money or carry cash. By giving Chinese customers the opportunity to use their local payment methods, WHSmith will become an even more attractive shopping destination for Chinese visitors. According to the UK Office for National Statistics, the number of Chinese tourists to the UK has doubled in the past five years, reaching almost 400,000 in 2018. A 2019 report by Nielsen found that 93% of Chinese tourists would be more willing to increase their spending while travelling if a larger number of merchants accepted mobile payments, making the integration a lucrative solution for retailers. In total, Wirecard has already enabled over 400 merchants globally to accept China payment methods, with individual merchants recording a transaction volume of up to EUR 10 million per month.
In addition, Wirecard and WHSmith are launching their e-commerce collaboration by enabling the retailer to process payments made using Mastercard’s Pay by Bank App. Pay by Bank App is an online checkout option that lets customers pay using the bank app on their phone, making online checkout easier since the payment takes place from the user’s own bank app. As a result, users do not need to disclose payment details, create new accounts or logins, or remember additional passwords. Customers benefit from an easy and seamless checkout experience, and as the solution already enables strong customer authentication, it is PSD2 compliant.