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Wero Digital Wallet by EPI Now Available in Germany

The European Payments Initiative (EPI) has officially launched its innovative digital wallet solution, Wero, in Germany. This launch marks a significant milestone in the evolution of digital payments in Europe, providing a seamless, secure, and user-friendly payment experience for both consumers and merchants.

Background of EPI

The EPI, founded in 2020, is a collaborative venture backed by 16 major European banks and financial services companies, including BNP Paribas, Deutsche Bank, ING, and others. The initiative was established to create a unified pan-European payment solution that could compete with global payment giants like Visa and Mastercard. By leveraging instant account-to-account transfer technology, EPI aims to streamline the payment process, reduce intermediaries, and offer enhanced efficiency for all types of retail transactions​​.

The decision to name the digital wallet “Wero” reflects a blend of European unity and simplicity. According to Martina Weimert, CEO of EPI, the name was chosen from a pool of 238 candidates for its collective European character and phonetic similarity to “Euro,” symbolizing trust and reliability in financial transactions​​.

Features of Wero

Wero promises a range of advanced features designed to cater to modern payment needs:

  • Secure and Fast Payments: Wero utilizes an account-to-account infrastructure, ensuring instant transfers between bank accounts without the need for card intermediaries. This setup not only speeds up the transaction process but also enhances security through strong authentication mechanisms.
  • Peer-to-Peer (P2P) Transactions: Users can easily send and receive money between friends and family using just a phone number, making everyday financial exchanges straightforward and hassle-free.
  • Online and Mobile Shopping: Wero supports online shopping and mobile payments, providing a versatile solution for various purchasing scenarios. This includes one-click checkouts, scheduled payments, and subscriptions, all facilitated through a user-friendly mobile app​​.
  • Loyalty Programs and Value-Added Services: In addition to basic payment functions, Wero plans to incorporate loyalty programs and other value-added services, aiming to enhance user engagement and satisfaction.
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By offering these features, Wero seeks to become the preferred digital wallet in Europe, addressing the gaps in the current payment ecosystem and setting a new standard for digital transactions across the continent​​.

Wero Digital Wallet Goes Live in Germany
Image source: wero-wallet.eu

Launch Details

The Wero digital wallet has been officially launched in Germany, marking its first major market entry. The initiative, supported by major European banks such as BNP Paribas, Deutsche Bank, and ING, aims to provide a unified payment solution that simplifies transactions across the continent. Initially, Wero will focus on person-to-person (P2P) and consumer-to-business (C2B) payments, leveraging instant account-to-account (A2A) transfers to ensure fast and secure transactions. As the rollout progresses, additional features like online shopping payments and point-of-sale (POS) transactions will be introduced​​.

‘We are delighted to announce the launch of wero, which begins with the start of the service in the German market. To familiarize consumers with wero, we’re starting with person-to-person transactions, but wero’s aim in the future is to offer all kind of payments through a single wallet combining the simplicity, immediacy and security of the banks. We are excited that from now on we can progressively deliver new value through additional services to the European market.’ 

Martina Weimert, CEO of EPI

Market Impact

Wero is poised to significantly impact the European payment landscape by addressing the current fragmentation in digital payments. The platform promises to offer a consistent and seamless payment experience for both consumers and merchants. For consumers, Wero simplifies everyday transactions, reducing the reliance on cash and offering a secure alternative for digital payments. Merchants, on the other hand, will benefit from lower transaction fees due to the elimination of card intermediaries and the efficiency of instant payments​​.

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Furthermore, the acquisition of Payconiq and iDEAL strengthens Wero’s capabilities, allowing it to leverage established payment networks and expertise to enhance its service offerings. This strategic move underscores EPI’s commitment to creating a robust and scalable payment solution that can meet the diverse needs of the European market​​.

The launch of Wero by the European Payments Initiative represents a significant milestone in the evolution of digital payments in Europe. By offering a unified, secure, and efficient payment solution, Wero is set to transform the way Europeans conduct transactions, making digital payments more accessible and reliable across the continent.

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