Mastercard aligns its physical and digital operations, invests in venture

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Mastercard’s relentless push to streamline payments with digital technology is affecting the structure of its entire organization.

Beginning next month, Mastercard’s chief product officer Michael Miebach will lead the company's newly formed products and innovation team, bringing Mastercard’s core products including digital payments, Mastercard Labs and processing activities together, Mastercard announced on Wednesday.

As part of the shift, Mastercard’s chief innovation officer, Garry Lyons, will leave Mastercard on June 1 to launch an outside venture that will provide services to Mastercard, which will be an investor. Lyons will continue to act as a senior adviser to Mastercard’s management committee, the company said in a press release.

Miebach, a longtime Citi exec who moved to Barclays Bank for three years prior to joining Mastercard in 2010 as president of the Dubai region, was promoted to become Mastercard’s chief product officer in January 2016 and he played a key strategic role in Mastercard’s deal to buy Vocalink, which was finalized last year.

“The integrated view of value today with an eye toward the future will spark more powerful experiences for the end consumer,” said Mastercard CEO Ajay Banga in the release, describing the realignment.

Mastercard declined to comment on whether combining its physical and digital operations would result in job losses.

Lyons joined Mastercard a decade ago and was instrumental in creating Mastercard Labs in 2010. Mastercard in 2015 promoted Lyons to lead both digital payments and Mastercard Labs. Lyons has worked closely with Miebach over the last two years, according to a Mastercard spokesperson.

“I’m excited for this next chapter in my career and I’m equally delighted to embark on this journey with Mastercard as a partner as we create new services for our customers,” Lyons said in the release.

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