Credit Cards
Credit cards are here to say, according to Visa Europe Reuters

"Cards are far from being dead," declared Nicholas Huss, the boss of Visa Europe, at the MoneyConf in Belfast.

Huss's vehemence, like that of other big ticket card providers, is built on the success of contactless payments. He said Europe has 2.4 million contactless paypoints at the moment, adding that Spain alone has 500,000 – more than the US.

Huss said contactless "paves the way to mobile payments" and that it is one of the ways Visa intends to become the premier payment platform for the digital economy.

"We try every day to walk that walk," he said.

Huss added it was simple and easy for users to "plug into our platform and run on our rails.

"There is also the trust and safety that comes from using Visa."

However, recent conversations with experts in the digital payments space contradict what Huss says about Visa's technology.

Many merchants have no choice but to integrate the "ugly, outside-in" technology of Visa's wallet system because they are the market leader, Marcel Roelants, GM Europe of BitPay, told IBTimes in an interview.

Visa also spends a fortune chasing fraud and identity theft, often after the fact.

However, Visa said it is trying hard to understand the technology needs of its clients with the establishment of a new innovation lab in London that aims to connect with "partners and start-ups".

Huss said his priorities were mobile banking and payments and encouraging other players to use Visa's technology. He said it was impossible for his firm to be end-to-end in this capacity.

"Europe is a complex and fragmented market, which is a challenge to institutional players," he conceded.