Mastercard has teamed up with French investment firm Meridiam to help fund and manage digital mobility infrastructure projects in North America.
The partnership, which forms part of Mastercard’s City Possible initiative, will enable the transit agencies to launch smart payments technology such as contactless payments. It will also enable them to lay the foundation for mobility-as-a-service (MaaS).
The initiative aims to enable citizens and visitors to access public transport easily.
As part of the collaboration, both the companies will collectively work together to find cities looking to improve their urban mobility systems.
Mastercard executive vice president enterprise partnerships and head of global cities Miguel Gamiño said: “Collaboration is the lifeblood of City Possible. Today’s announcement represents such a collaborative approach that matches cities’ needs with financing resources, our technology, and expertise.
“This programme highlights how even resource-constrained municipalities can benefit from working with the private sector to make the digital economy work for everyone, everywhere.”
Meridiam CEO Thierry Deau said: “With this initiative, Meridiam will contribute to the development, financing, and management of sustainable urban transport infrastructure, improving mobility experiences and unlocking significant savings for cities.”
Contactless ticketing, according to Mastercard, reduces costs by nearly 30%; however, transit agencies are unable to implement the project due to budget constraints.
Approximately $232bn needs to be invested in the US public transportation system, according to the American Public Transportation Association (APTA).
World Bank global director of the urban, disaster risk management, resilience and land global practice Sameh Naguib Wahba said: “Modern, resilient infrastructure is critical for anticipated urban growth.
Wahba added that the minimum $4.1 trillion to $4.7 trillion needs to be invested per annum in global urban infrastructure and cannot be fulfilled with meagre official development assistance.
So, private investments are need of the hour, Wahba concluded.
Mastercard has already assisted numerous cities such as Sydney, Singapore, London, Bogota, Dubai, and New York to implement the cards and digital payments to access public transport.