Crédit Agricole and Worldline announce the launch of their JV

Back in April of 2023 Payments Cards & Mobile reported that Worldline and Crédit Agricole announced the signing of a non-binding exclusive agreement regarding a strategic partnership to create a major player in the French merchant services payment market.

Crédit Agricole and Worldline announce JV

Now, after receiving unconditional authorization from the European Commission, the companies have announced the creation of their joint-venture for digital payment services for merchants in France.

At the first Board meeting, held on 19 March 2024, Laurent Bennet, Chief Executive Officer of Crédit Agricole des Savoie, was elected Chairman of the Board of Directors and Meriem Echcherfi was appointed Chief Executive Officer.

The commercial brand of the joint venture will be unveiled soon.

The joint-venture aims to become a major player in payment services in France.

It will leverage Worldline’s technological performance and innovation capabilities, particularly in the area of acceptance, and Crédit Agricole group’s merchant acquiring performance in the French market.

The joint-venture will also be responsible for the commercial development of this alliance with merchants, while providing active support to the banks within the Crédit Agricole group.

The joint venture is 50% owned plus one share by Worldline and will therefore be fully consolidated. Crédit Agricole holds 50% of the capital less one share and will supervise the joint venture.

The joint venture will integrate the “Cartes Bancaires” (CB) domestic payment scheme. In addition to French merchants, Worldline will offer its international merchants access to the CB scheme, thereby extending its wide range of local payment methods through access to one of the most powerful European domestic payment schemes.

“After a period of preparation, the launch of our joint-venture marks the real starting point of our partnership with Worldline,” comments Jean-Paul Mazoyer, Deputy General Manager of Crédit Agricole S.A. in charge of Technology, Digital and Payments.

“This partnership with a major player in the payments business reflects Crédit Agricole’s ambition to strengthen its leadership in the payments business, a service at the heart of the banking relationship.

Our joint-venture reflects our shared ambition to offer our merchants customers the very best payment solutions.  Under the responsibility of Meriem Echcherfi, Managing Director, our joint-venture will rapidly become a key player and leader in the French market.”

Meriem Echcherfi began her career at Société Générale in 2004, within the risk department on the Basel II project implementation and then in the corporate and investment banking division as director of market Risk Advisory and derivative sales for corporate clients.

In 2012, she joined the Boston Consulting Group as project leader for financial institutions in Paris and Casablanca, before becoming Head of Mastercard Advisors France in 2016, then Vice President in charge of business development in 2018.

Mrs Echcherfi joined Crédit Agricole in 2019 as head of Credit Agricole SA Group Strategy, then Head of Merchant Services in 2023.


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