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Luck of the Dragon for Luxury UK Retailers Cashing In On Chinese Spend

• First UK acquirer to provide UnionPay acceptance on a large scale

• Brands signed-up include Prada, Tiffany & Co and World Duty Free

Luxury retailers in the UK are increasingly looking to attract wealthy Chinese tourists using UnionPay cards, with the help of HSBC Merchant Services LLP, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Global Payments and one of the largest independent payment processors in the UK.

HSBC Merchant Services is the first to process payments from UnionPay cards directly; traditionally, acquirers have had to process payments through an international system, while direct processing allows longer trading hours on the cards and will provide retailers with a faster and more efficient service.

China is home to the fourth highest number of High Net Worth Individuals[1] which is reflected in the transactions processed by HSBC Merchant Services; the current average transaction on UnionPay cards is between £2,000 and £3,000. Luxury retailers who have signed up to the scheme with HSBC Merchant Services include Prada, Tiffany & Co and World Duty Free.

UnionPay is the sole national bankcard network in China, with more than 250 Chinese domestic and international bank members. It recently overtook Visa as the world's largest payments card scheme2, with two billion cards, representing over $1 trillion in annual spending3.

Chris Davies, Managing Director of HSBC Merchant Services said: “We are proud to be working with such a valued global brand as UnionPay, marking a pivotal moment in the UK payments industry for all merchants.

“With major global events taking place here in 2012, it is important for businesses to capitalise on the influx of visitors eager to spend. We hope to be able to expand our offering across more foreign card networks in the near future.”

Merchants of all types can benefit from accepting UnionPay cards, from retailers, to hotels and leisure businesses. HSBC Merchant Services can set up UnionPay terminals for HSBC Bank plc's customers and non-HSBC banked customers.