Check out our latest interview with Andre Piva, the head of payment products at Elo in Brazil. We have been working with Elo for 10 years and are proud to be a part of their success to become a major payment scheme. So we thought it would be interesting to share some views on what Elo is doing and their plans for the future of payments.
How did Elo start and what were the main goals?
Elo started in 2011, from the union of the three of the largest banks in Brazil. A 100% Brazilian payment technology company, Elo had the challenge of entering a market dominated by global companies. Elo has a focus to bring more flexibility and agility to the payments sector in Brazil, and each year has been growing through partnerships with national and international companies and launching innovative products and services.
What is Elo’s current market figures for customers served, cards deployed?
We currently have more than 180 million cards issued, in credit, debit and prepaid modes, issued by more than 30 banks, retailers and fintechs. Our cards are accepted throughout Brazil by more than 11 million commercial establishments, and in addition are able to be used for international purchases in more than 200 countries and territories.
In your opinion, what has made Elo a successful payment scheme in Brazil?
The fact that we are a 100% Brazilian company allows us to differentiate from the competition, with benefits to our commercial partners and our customers. For our partners, with our market expertise and agility in decision making, we can be flexible to understand and adapt products and services to match the specific Brazil requirements. For our customers, having cards accepted all over the country, a wide portfolio of products and services designed for the national market and the possibility to personalize the benefits of the card through the Elo Flex platform.
What about the future, how do you see payments evolving in Brazil, and can you share some of Elo's plans?
The payment market is developing at an accelerated pace, with the launch of several products and services that facilitate the relationship between Brazilians citizens and digital payments. One of the hot topics is PIX, launched by the Central Bank, for instant payments and which promises to increase the digitalization of money in the country.
Contactless payments also gained momentum this year, mainly due to the social distance measures imposed by the covid-19 pandemic. In the third quarter of this year, these transactions increased 6 times, totalling 14.4 billion Reais.
In addition, this year we led the implementation of technologies for making purchases with Emergency Aid, one of the largest social benefit programs ever created in the world, without the need for withdrawals, physical contact and with accessible solutions for unbanked Brazilians citizens. In this program, we made use of two technologies, the virtual debit card, which enabled face-to-face and online transactions through the Issuer's app, and the QR code Elo Hub, which made face-to-face purchases possible with the smartphone, just by pointing the camera at the POS, with a dynamic QR code with each purchase.
What can you tell us about Elo’s plans regarding wearables and other payment technologies?
Payments with wearables and contactless cards are on the rise, due to the practicality and the current context in which we avoid physical contact with the Payment Terminal and the handling of the card by the cashier. ABECS data show that payments by contactless grew more than 6x in the third quarter of this year, an important share of the market and which should increase significantly this year and continue to grow every year, as Brazilians begin to adopt this form of purchase on a large scale.
What about the Elo plans for other countries in Latin America?
Our cards are accepted all over Brazil and we are present in more than 200 countries, through face-to-face and online transactions. Since 2016, we have partnered with Discover Global Network, one of the largest payment companies in the world, in expanding international acceptance. Since then, we have carried out several offers and promotions for our clients traveling abroad. In addition, in 2018 we obtained the exclusive right to use the Diners Club International brand in Brazil and we now have Elo Diners Club cards in our portfolio.
Can you tell us a bit about yourself, your role and what you are currently working on?
As manager of new technologies, my job is to think about the possibility of businesses that meet the current and future requirements for practical payment experiences for Brazilians. Through studies and tests, we develop payment solutions that facilitate our customers' relationship with money.
Elo is integrating the agile method in all layers of the company, which has evolved our technology, culture, operation and delivery of value through an internal program called Digital Transformation. Currently, I am expanding my role in Product Management, working on the design and development of a new exclusive domain for Payment Technologies, which includes 3 streams of interesting topics: the EMV (Cards and Terminals), Urban Mobility and Tokenization as an enabler of Digital Payments.
How do you feel about working for Brazil's own payment brand?
I believe that freedom of action and dynamism are the most rewarding points of working in a 100% Brazilian company. In a very natural way, everyone works to meet the needs of everyday Brazilians, giving the organizational environment flexibility, modernity and a collaborative space to develop any product.
What are the most rewarding aspects of your role?
I have been at Elo for 8 years and was able to be part of all stages of the company's evolution. We started as a scheme and we become one of the largest payment technology companies, facing global companies and winning the preference of millions of Brazilians. The feeling of belonging in the company and the possibility of acting from the creation of the product to its implementation, in projects created from scratch, are the most rewarding aspects of my journey at Elo.
What is the most challenging aspect of your role today?
The most challenging aspect is always to look for the new, the next technology that will revolutionize the market and make it available to Brazilians. It is a challenge that motivates me, because here at Elo we work from conception to product delivery to Brazilians
Would you like to share anything fun or curious with us?
A funny fact is that I was one of the “characters” in our internal Elo Flex campaign, playing the double of an Elo employee who looks like me. We reproduced the campaign that is currently on the air, on social networks and TV, in which people who are confused with celebrities, but who are unique, as well as their Elo card, that can be customized, as they want. It was a very fun actor experience and it generated a good laugh!
Can you tell us Elo's experience with MULTOS products and working with Multos International?
Our partnership with Multos is one of the major projects we carry out at Elo today. We have the dynamic challenge of promoting the massive issuance of contactless payments, and we are working side by side to promote the product. It is a challenging and motivating task because we are fostering a super partner company within Elo that is helping us a lot in this process.