In December 2009, consumers made 5.4 million payment card transactions totalling CZK 6.3 billion at retailers equipped with Komerční banka payment terminals. For the first time ever, the full-year number of transactions at retailers with KB terminals exceeded the number of withdrawals from KB ATMs (by 9.54%).

The volume of payment card transactions made at KB retailers increased by 4%, and the number of transactions even rose by as much as 13%. Thus, card payments are also becoming more attractive for smaller purchases. The largest share (23%) of the total December volume of sales was taken by supermarkets, where customers used their card to pay for purchases amounting to CZK 850 on average. In comparison with the previous year, the volume of payments and the number of transactions made in supermarkets increased by 16.7% and 21.8%, respectively.

On the other hand, vendors of electronic goods and telecommunications services registered a year-on-year drop in the number of card payments. "Over the 'Golden Advent Weekend', consumers made payments totalling CZK 0.5 billion via Komerční banka terminals. In December, the most expensive purchase took place in a designer boutique and exceeded CZK 750,000," says Pavel Filipi, Deputy Head of Retail Marketing at Komerční banka.

In the run-up to Christmas, interest of Komerční banka's clients in cash back, the youngest payment card service, also increased.

"In 4,500 cases they made use of their Christmas shopping for withdrawing cash, totalling in excess of CZK 5 million, directly at the retailer's check-out counter," notes Pavel Filipi.

The importance of on-line payment transactions also increased dynamically. In December 2009, the number of on-line card payments rose by 40% y/y to almost 21,000 transactions. "The average value of transactions also dropped as regards on-line payments, specifically from CZK 3,136 in December 2008 to CZK 2,300 in December 2009. Similarly as in traditional shops, clients are also beginning to use cards for paying not only for more expensive goods such as electronics but also for smaller purchases such as cosmetics, toys, books etc. over the Internet," adds Pavel Filipi.

On 31 December 2009 Komerční banka operated 18,784 payment terminals and 682 ATMs at retailers in the Czech Republic.

Komerční banka is one of the best run universal banks in Central Europe. It provides comprehensive services to clients in the areas of retail, corporate, and investment banking. The Komerční banka Group's 8,843 employees serve more than 2.7 million clients, who can use an extensive network of 398 points of sale throughout the country. Komerční banka currently operates 682 ATMs and more than 972,000 of its clients use one of direct banking channels.

Komerční banka is part of the Société Générale Group, one of the largest banking groups in the euro zone (in terms of market capitalisation), whose 163,000 employees serve more than 30 million individual clients worldwide.