A new study by Juniper Research has found that the global value of virtual card transactions will reach $6.8 trillion in 2026, from $1.9 trillion in 2021. Virtual cards, secure digital cards with randomly generated details, will show strong growth as they are increasingly used for B2B payments. The research identified that businesses will value the simplicity of virtual cards, compared to the expensive and slow methods still being used, such as cheque payments, which remain popular in the US.
The new research, Virtual Cards: B2B and B2C Applications, Competitive Analysis & Market Forecasts 2021-2026, predicts that outside of the dynamic B2B market, the added security from virtual cards will also appeal to the consumer market. To capitalize on virtual card opportunities, vendors must identify which segment they are targeting and emphasize the most important value-added features, such as ERP integrations or consumer brand partnerships.
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B2B Payments Dominating Transaction Value
The report found that B2B payments will continue to account for the majority of virtual card transaction value; amounting to 71% of the total value in 2026. While B2B sales occur less frequently, yielding under 1% of transaction volume in 2026, average transaction values are much higher in the B2B segment. This means that vendors must ensure that security features and automation are emphasized to facilitate large payments as efficiently as possible.
Indian Subcontinent Seeing Strongest Growth
The research forecasts that the Indian Subcontinent will be the fastest-growing region over the next five years, with transaction volumes increasing more than tenfold. India, in particular, will present enormous potential for vendors.
This growth will be underpinned by the presence of major vendors in the region, such as SBI and Oxigen Wallet. The high adoption of virtual cards in the buoyant mobile wallets sector will drive eCommerce usage. Additionally, the report identified the requirement by the RBI from October 2020 for users to have control over card use to prevent fraud as a major growth driver.
Juniper Research provides research and analytical services to the global hi-tech communications sector; providing consultancy, analyst reports, and industry commentary.