Voice of the Industry

Fast and flexible, not furious: how top card issuers win the race

Tuesday 26 March 2024 08:48 CET | Editor: Vlad Macovei | Voice of the industry

Jean-Philippe Wolyniec, Regional Sales Director, shares insight on the fastest card and digital lending innovations. He explains what helps OpenWay clients speed up launch of new issuing products, and why the real-time straight-through processing is crucial for a digital-first customer experience.


Jean-Philippe Wolyinec, Regional Sales Director at OpenWay, shares insight on the fastest card and digital lending innovations.


The importance of time-to-market is well explained in numbers. Fast innovators are 18 times more disruptive, reports BCG, and getting new products to market quickly generates more sales from them – at least 30% of revenue. The good old Need for Speed game is played in many industries, including card issuance.

Card issuers’ need for speed exists on several levels, observes OpenWay, whose Way4 card management software is used by top banks, processors and fintechs around the world. Indeed, rapid product development remains a top priority. It delivers the best results when supported by instant digital interactions with customers, rapid migration, and accelerated new market entry.  

Time-to-market accelerated with flexible product configuration

To be the fast innovators, OpenWay clients rely on our highly configurable, rule-driven Way4 platform. Instead of hard coding, they create new products using flexible parameters. This includes pricing, instalments, multi-currency accounting, credit limits, interest calculations, exceptions, fees and commissions, authentication validity periods, risk operations, workflows, and more. Approximately 95% of product features in Way4 are parameterizable, compared to the 30 to 40% offered in competing systems. This flexibility allows issuers to quickly innovate a common product for a new business model. 

In Europe, Way4’s basket data analytics functionality help transform basic prepaid cards into a social aid instrument with flexible spending control. Our client Enfuce and French fintech Welcome Place are piloting Visa-branded cards for refugees. Transactions on these cards can be instantly declined by the issuer in certain locations (e.g. gaming) but accepted at approved merchants.

In the Dominican Republic, where low-income families were offered financial assistance in 2020, our client Banesco handled the issuing aspect, and it took them less than a month from the project idea to the actual distribution of over one million cards.

When our client National Bank of Oman offered a reloadable prepaid card for travelers, it quickly configured instant self-service onboarding, favorable FX rates, and customer-controlled daily limits. 

Thanks to Way4’s flexibility, Equity Bank Kenya was the first in the world to enable interoperability between the payment card network and a leading digital wallet ecosystem M-PESA. 

The breakthrough impact of flexible product configuration on time-to-market is confirmed by National Bank of Greece: “The centralization of our card business on Way4 enables us to react to new market trends quickly, and be more competitive in the open banking environment”.

24/7 fully online processing for impatient cardholders

Cardholders demand fast service, no matter how complex their request is. Even when an issuer is onboarding a new BNPL customer at checkout, issuing a BNPL card and calculating a repayment plan – Way4 has it completed in a matter of seconds. It can also fetch various data from external systems. To generate personalised offers, our client Nets, an issuing processor within Nexi Group, examines customers’ bank statements, bill payments, surveys, social media websites, ecommerce, and mobile money transactions. 

For multi-currency cards, Way4 routes the transaction to a specific currency account according to the rules pre-configured by the issuer. This can be an account opened in Way4 or in the integrated Core Banking System. This routing causes no delay for cardholders.  

Technologically, such efficiency requires 24/7 online front-to-back reconciliation and accounting, and this is where the uniqueness of Way4's architecture lies. All data stored internally and in the integrated external systems is analysed by Way4's online financial core. All due processing rules are immediately applied according to the optimal scenario.

After migrating its credit portfolio to Way4 in 2023, an Asian consumer finance brand JIVF reported: 'The new JIVF payment system, built on the highly configurable Way4 platform with its integrated online back- and front-office operations, ensures a digital-first customer experience'.

CMS migration or launch from scratch – how long? 

Innovative projects often involve a significant time uncertainty. OpenWay addresses it with a unique approach that, according to Forbes, 'can increase your chances of success when delivering complex digital transformation projects in fast-changing environments'. 

This approach enabled the success of Timo digital bank. In just 4 months we helped them launch their infrastructure on AWS, with Way4 managing a fully digital card issuing and payment lifecycle and providing external systems with a full set of APIs. 

Replacing a legacy system can be just as fast. In 4 months Tsesnabank migrated from BPC's SmartVista to our Way4 card management platform. The bank immediately noticed a positive impact on its operational efficiency: 'Thanks to Way4, we got rid of a lot of unnecessary duplication, checks, and business processes. Now we have more time and capacity to develop the payment business'.

In a more complex project, where Sathapana Bank needed to replace a fragmented infrastructure inherited from two financial institutions, the migration to Way4 took less than 6 months.

All issuers using Way4 have their need for speed met on multiple levels, but each has a list of unique requirements, and the list grows over time. Prior to a new project, we work closely with the client to create the solution blueprint, assemble the project team, agree on the MVP, detailed scope and timeframe. The insights that OpenWay's experts bring to the table help a bank, processor or fintech take the most efficient path to card business acceleration.

About Jean-Philippe Wolyniec 

Jean-Philippe Wolyniec is the Regional Director of Business Development France and Europe at OpenWay, the top-rated vendor of the Wa4 digital payment software platform. He has extensive experience in international projects and issues in payment services, as well as business development with leading institutions in their market, focused on payment, banking, merchant services, and mobility solutions. 


About OpenWay

OpenWay is the only best-in-class provider of digital payment software solutions for card issuing, digital wallets, merchant acquiring, BNPL, transaction switching, tokenization, and fleet payments, and the best cloud payment systems provider as rated by Aite and PayTech. Top-tier banks and processors, as well as ambitious fintech startups, have chosen OpenWay as their strategic partner. With its unique capabilities in rich functionality, fast-to-market, high availability, and better ROI, the Way4 software platform guarantees an unparalleled customer payment experience. 

Free Headlines in your E-mail

Every day we send out a free e-mail with the most important headlines of the last 24 hours.

Subscribe now

Keywords: Issuer, banks, fintech, payment methods, prepaid card
Categories: Payments & Commerce
Companies: OpenWay
Countries: World
This article is part of category

Payments & Commerce


Discover all the Company news on OpenWay and other articles related to OpenWay in The Paypers News, Reports, and insights on the payments and fintech industry:

Industry Events