It was an offer market. It has become a “demand market”, says Marco Siracusano, CEO of Postepay. The Copernican revolution triggered by the pandemic has overturned the purchasing behavior of Italians. Providing unprecedented acceleration in electronic transactions. We would have needed ten years for this cultural / technological leap. “It occurred in just three months,” says Sami Kahale, at the helm of Esselunga during an online event on Corriere.it come on La7.it
A transformation that brings criticality and opportunity. The fight against cash will absolutely benefit and with it the battle against tax evasion. From July 1, the 2,000 euro cap for physical transactions enters into force. Measure often opposed by merchant associations for too high commissions. “False theme – says Michele Centemero, country manager of Mastercard Italia -. It is more a problem of perception. The commissions are among the lowest in Europe ». And the number of Pos is among the highest, a sign of competition from the banks side.
In large retailers digital movements have grown by 20%, touching two million customers. And the ecommerce channel has grown by 170% putting pressure on logistics. “That’s why we need to push on the digitalization of companies,” says Silvia Candiani, Microsoft’s number one in Italy. It would serve to bring the smes, above all, where they are not yet. “With incentives and training,” adds Candiani. The feeling is that Covid took the world where it had to go, but speeding up the direction.
Urbano Cairo, president of Rcs Mediagroup says, the publishing house of this newspaper, that “there is a request for personalized information based on user requests. We witnessed an overwhelming need that we also supported thanks to newsstands ». The site of the Corriere della Sera it had an average of 7.5 million unique users per day in March. «And now 300 thousand subscribers, at the beginning of the year there were 170 thousand», explains Cairo.
An effort also supported by the banks, criticized for the difficulties in the provision of liquidity to businesses. Pietro Sella, at the helm of the bank of the same name, says that lenders have supported an unthinkable effort “with task force at work day and night to help companies running out of liquidity and with decreasing cash flows”. But it is clear that without the reliability and security of the payment infrastructure nothing would be possible.
Says Paolo Bertoluzzo, CEO of Nexi (who is working on a payment center with Sia) who “the system held up well even during the lockdown”. Because already oversized compared to the demand for electronic transactions that have grown enormously. Siracusano notes that online physical operations have also increased. The tricolor difficulties remain. “Italy ranks fourth among the EU countries by index of digitization”, denounces Candiani. And a South that is still slow to digital payments.