ACCC Won't Grant Aussie Banks' Collective Bargaining For Apple Pay Straight Away

Image: ANZ/Apple

Commonwealth Bank, Westpac, NAB and Bendigo and Adelaide Bank have suffered a minor setback in their journey to jointly negotiate with Apple to bargain down the mobile giant's payment fees — or collectively boycott the service if they don't get the result they want — with ACCC withholding an interim authorisation for the coalition to go ahead with the process.

In Australia, both ANZ and American Express have partnered with Apple to offer Apple Pay since the service launched in late November, with American Express the launch partner and ANZ coming on board in April. Other banks, though, are petitioning the ACCC for the right to negotiate with Apple as a group. A joint negotiation would — in theory — allow these banks to use their collective power to bargain lower interchange fees and operating costs — a point of contention for Apple's payment platform versus Samsung Pay, Android Pay and some banks' own homegrown Android-based NFC apps.

The coalition of banks released a short statement, reiterating the potential of the application, saying that their negotiation would add much-needed competition, and would open up Apple's NFC chip for banks to make their own apps outside of Apple Pay. "The ACCC today has determined they need more time to review the application and consult third parties, before making a draft determination. The applicants (Bendigo and Adelaide Bank, Commonwealth Bank, NAB and Westpac) have been in consultation, and will continue to be in consultation with the ACCC up until the final determination is made.

"This application seeks to ensure that Australian customers are able to choose between different mobile wallets to make payments easily. This application has broader industry benefits too. A number of other Australian institutions have supported the ACCC granting the authorisation, including Heritage Bank, Tyro and Indue." A recent submission to the ACCC from Australian Settlements Ltd strongly supports the collective's position. The ACCC expects to release its draft decision in October. [ACCC]

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Comments

    hmm.. i see how this is playing out.

    Banks: "Apple stand to make a shitload of money from OUR customers"
    Apple: "We've developed a system to make a shit-tonne of money from someone else's customers... yippee!"
    Banks: "if WE get our own access, then WE stand to make a shitload of money from our customers, screw Apple, and let us screw our own customers thank you very much"

    and the winner is.... NOT the customer!

    What people forget is its not only apple but Samsung and Android that the banks are trying to fuck. In the end I don't want three wallets for the three banks I use. I want one wallet with three banks inside, it makes sense.

    NFC has been around since the dark ages and has gotten no where. Now that Apple has increased the use significantly around the world now all of a sudden the banks want access to it. Banks are not software companies. They are not agile enough.

    They will never develop anything that can compete with Google or Apple in the software space. The aussie banks make me sick, I am closing all my accounts and will rely on my new ANZ bank account only. The online banking system is not far behind CBA for a basic user.

      Doesn't help when I load my debit card onto the westpac app and NFC on ...nothing happens.

    Welcome to Australia - where every thing fucks you (the customer).

    Solution = Apple, become a bank in Australia. I'd join.

    I disagree with your negativity. Carry a card or pay cash if you want. Do you see a different price for using Apple pay? Of course not.

    Banks aren't even the worst. I simply can't believe the fact that I can have a super account which is in principle no different to a bnk account and they charge me hundreds of dollars in fees for the privilege of earning interest on my money. My super account is actually decreasing every year it's open. I simply cannot see how they can justify charging me more in fees than the interest that accumulates.

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