Over the past five years BLIK has become synonymous with mobile payments in Poland. There have been a total of 353 million transactions, of which nearly 220 million were made last year. I believe that in the coming years BLIK will also become synonymous with mobile contactless payments in Poland. Such a rapid development of a system built from scratch would not be possible were it not for the cooperation of many players on the market – banks, clearing house, paying agents and sellers – both traditional and online, says Dariusz Mazurkiewicz, President of The Management Board of Polish Payment Standard, BLIK operator.
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Five years of BLIK: 353 million transactions worth PLN 47 billion – time for international expansion
This February marks five years since the BLIK polish mobile payment system first appeared. In this time, BLIK has become widely available and broadly used. Its users made a total of 353 million transactions worth PLN 47 billion. BLIK’s popularity is strongest online, where in 2019 it overtook card payments. Last year, nearly nine million people used BLIK.
BLIK was launched in February 2015 thanks to an agreement between six competitor banks. The solution was entirely invented in Poland. It was based on the IKO application used at PKO Bank Polski, whose chairman – Zbigniew Jagiełło was the initiator of the agreement to develop a single mobile payment standard. During these past 5 years, BLIK was made available by other institutions – today it can be used by 95% of mobile banking customers. In 2019, nine million users paid with BLIK.
In the nearest future, BLIK will primarily focus on making contactless payments available in Poland and in the world, and developing cooperation with foreign platforms providing payment solutions for global e-commerce players. Thanks to this, BLIK will expand its network far beyond Poland. The natural consequence of this will be efforts to cooperate with foreign banks so that they can offer BLIK as a payment method to their clients – users of banking applications around the world.
The rapidly growing number of transactions is well illustrated by data from the fourth quarter of 2019, when 72 million transactions were recorded – an increase of 113 percent year on year. At that time, the largest increase – 228 percent year on year – was observed for transactions at POS terminals (there were 6.6 million such transactions in the fourth quarter).
The number of transfers to a BLIK phone number increased by 182 percent (5.8 million in the fourth quarter). The system also recorded 6.8 million deposits and withdrawals from ATMs (+56% y/y). Traditionally – the highest number of transactions in the last quarter of last year was made by users on the Internet – it was close to 53 million, or 109 percent more than in the corresponding period of 2018.
In the last quarter of 2019, users completed an average of 766,000 transactions per day – i.e. 8 per second. A single day record is 1.3 million transactions. The average BLIK transaction amount during this time is PLN 136.At the end of 2019, BLIK was available in 476,000 commercial and service outlets with 538,000 payment terminals (that’s 65 percent of all terminals in Poland). You can also use it in over 20,000 ATMs (90% of the market) and throughout Poland’s e-commerce market.
According to the National Bank of Poland, BLIK has been surpassing payment cards in online payments for the last four quarters. According to NBP data for the third quarter of 2019, users have paid with cards 28 million times, while with BLIK nearly 40 million times. The increase in the number of online BLIK transactions is higher than the increase in the number of card transactions.
Recently, the Polish Payment Standard has been intensively working on making BLIK payments available in global e-commerce. After establishing cooperation with the PPRO and ADYEN payment platforms, Polish users will soon be able to pay with BLIK also in online stores operated by one of the leaders of international payment solutions.
BLIK is a nationwide, universal standard for mobile payments. Currently, over 90 percent of all customers of domestic financial institutions have the option of using BLIK in mobile banking applications.
The Polish Payment Standard is responsible for developing the system and continues to expand BLIK’s capabilities so that the system is as functional as possible for its users. The Polish Payment Standard shareholders include six Polish banks: Alior Bank, Bank Millennium, Santander Bank Polska, ING Bank Śląski, mBank and PKO Bank Polski. BLIK can also be used by clients of Getin Noble Bank, Bank Pekao S.A, BNP Paribas, Credit Agricole, Inteligo, T-Mobile Banking Services and cooperative banks that are part of Spółdzielcza Grupa Bankowa.