Tribe Payments launches with UnionPay cards service


Tech startup Tribe Payments has celebrated its launch day by securing the certification to allow banks to issue UnionPay cards.

Tribe Payments has become one of the first issuer processors in Europe to strike such a deal with UnionPay, which holds the world’s largest cardholder base.

The company was founded by payments veteran Suresh Vaghjiani, who has worked with a host of fintechs including Curve, Monzo, Revolut and Starling.

He said: “Consumers are now used to more choice and a better experience of financial products – but the fintech revolution has yet to reach other payment providers.

“These organisations rely on legacy infrastructure; too often that represents a compromise between speed and scale – it either takes months or years to deliver or, if delivered too quickly, will often be plagued by instability.

“Our team of renowned payment experts combined with our modular platform means that innovative payment providers no longer need to compromise between speed and scale.”

Wei Zhihong, UnionPay International’s Market Director and Head of its European Branch, added: “Working with innovative partners such as Tribe Payments is a key part of our expansion and growth in the European market where we are accepted by 3.3 million merchants in over 40 countries.

“We have the largest cardholder base in the world, working with issuers through Tribe is important to our growth. We are delighted to partner with Tribe Payments to deliver the innovations that will address critical market needs.”

Tribe provides payment technology to banks, fintechs, issuers, acquirers and other businesses providing payment services to merchants and consumers. Unlike other payment companies, the platform has been built from the ground up as ‘modular’ and ‘containerised’.

This means that Tribe brings technology advances to the back-end of payments that fintechs have delivered at the front-end: concepts can therefore be delivered in days rather than weeks, pilot programs put in place in weeks rather than months, and a product launch delivered in months instead of years – a timetable impossible with legacy platforms.