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Interac, Walmart Partner To Advance Canada’s eCommerce Ecosystem

Canadian payments services firm Interac has announced it is partnering with Walmart Canada to expand debit card payment methods both in-store and online.

“The collaboration will give Walmart customers more debit payment options, allowing them to transact using their own money within the channel of their choice,” William Keliehor, chief commercial officer at Interac, said in a statement on Tuesday (Nov. 10).

He added that considering Walmart’s “size, scope and scale in the domestic retail market,” the partnership accelerates the expansion for “in-app and in-browser payments in Canada.”

The new debit capabilities from Interac are anticipated to launch in the spring of 2021, giving Walmart shoppers the ability to pay for merchandise and services on proprietary wallets. Interac Flash is already rolling out at Walmart’s point-of-sale (POS) terminals, letting customers check out by tapping their debit card or smartphone.

Nicolai Salcedo, chief information officer of Walmart Canada, said the partnership with Interac is a result of listening to their customers and giving them “even more choices for how they pay for their items … especially during these challenging times.”

Expanding its digital shopping footprint in Canada has been one of Interac’s priorities, especially as COVID-19 has caused people to shop online and seek contactless payments, the statement indicated. Since the start of the pandemic in March, transactions are up 22 percent month over month on Interac debit for in-app and in-browser payments.

Even before the pandemic, merchants had been looking for secure, seamless digital solutions to meet customers’ needs. 

Interact and its subsidiary, 2Keys Corporation, specialize in digital transaction security for Canadian customers and nearly 300 connected financial institutions.

Walmart Canada has over 400 stores across the country and serves 1.5 million-plus customers daily. Its Canadian digital storefront serves more than 900,000 every day.

Walmart announced in September the launch of its Walmart+ subscription service, including free same-day delivery, Scan & Go on the Walmart app and a 5-cent-per-gallon discount on gas. Similar to Amazon Prime, customers pay for annual or monthly memberships for the service.

Last month, the retail giant introduced plans for new store designs offering pandemic-inspired layouts, with an increased number of self-checkout kiosks and contactless payment solutions.

PYMNTS’ How We Shop report in October, in collaboration with PayPal, outlines the digital shift’s affect on both retailers and consumers since the pandemic hit in March. 

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