MasterCard Send


Saw the article that Starling is the bank MasterCard Send will be using to power it’s oayments.

Any news or further information on what this will be? Just curious.


Very interesting - that’s a bit of a coup for Starling :slight_smile:



Partnerships like that should ensure Starling can continue to offer everything in our accounts for free.


Perhaps I’m a bit thick, but can anyone tell me what this means in layman’s terms please? What is it and what benefits does this bring to either the general public or to Starling? I’ve read it twice and don’t really understand it. Thanks


Mastercard Send is a service for businesses that make a lot of outgoing bank transfers, for example insurers (claim payouts) and payroll providers (wages).

These companies currently send payments using batch systems, which is slow, admin intensive and costly. Mastercard Send is a service where these businesses can set up an account, deposit a sum of money and then make outgoing bank transfers, on demand, via an API of some kind. That is my understanding anyway - @MIROW , am I right?

The fact Starling have been chosen as the UK banking partner is quite significant, it means these deposits (likely many £millions for an insurer) will be made to Starling, and Starling will hold the funds and handle the transfers and settlements for Mastercard. As for how much Starling earns from this, that is between them and Mastercard.

As for how this benefits us, it doesn’t directly. However, it does benefit Starling. Large contracts like this will help Starling reach profitability far more quickly than other challenger banks and will make it far more likely that Starling will continue to provide costly features to us at no charge. They will be able to absorb the costs of these features.

I really like this business model, there are many ways to make money if you have a banking licence, and Starling are right to exploit their licence in every way possible. If they were to focus just on a current account, they would end up burning investor money very quickly, introducing fees left, right and centre, and possibly even get desperate and start begging customers to not use features which cost them money.

Overall, I think we should be quite happy with this news.


It will allow businesses and people to send payments to peoples bank accounts using the faster payment service at a lower cost, They will be using some sort of automated system, most likely like the paypal bulk send api system, which as anyone who uses knows, it quick, efficient and cheap.

As for the benefits to Starling, Starling will be charging for the service, so that means that the income they receive should increase their profits which means they could potentially continue to offer free banking even when they have a substantial amount of customers.


That’s a great summary @Ben :+1:t2:


Great summary, thank you.


a great summary @Ben and @daedal

sorry I did not reply earlier @Ad13 but having not got home until 5am I have only just got up!


I would assume Mastercard Send will operate similar to how it operates in the USA.

However because Starling doesn’t offer complete international payments yet that option probably won’t appear unless Mastercard has an alternative option for that. As it’s not launched it’s probably very hush hush what they will offer.

For example Google Pay offers P2P payments in the USA using Mastercard Send.

Mastercard Send provides a secure data transfer service that facilitates funds transfers by its partner banks. Mastercard Send does not receive funds for transmission or transmit funds.

I assume that is where Starling comes in, it will be the partner bank in the UK for domestic transfers.

I also notice that Mastercard Send isn’t restricted to sending money to just Mastercards, it can be used to send to Visa and other debit cards.


@Ben Thanks for that great explanation. I now fully understand the importance of this relationship.



5AM? On a school night? :scream:


I have worked night shifts before, both with overseas clients and in the police, also at one point flew regularly, so happy having my timeclock out of sync :wink:


Lovely job there, Ben!


Okay, so in summary Mastercard Send benefits businesses and Starling (company) only, and not us in any way as in this changes nothing for us.


@Dotunmo I wouldn’t say that. There may not be a direct benefit to current account customers but the bank that you do your banking with is going to have a potentially lucrative revenue stream. This will hopefully mean that they can keep providing additional services such as foreign ATM withdrawals for free rather than introducing charges (like some of their competitors).


@danmullen While that is good…
What I still said is true. Nothing changes for us.


I’ve said similar before, but recently, Starling have been singing about features which do not benefit the every day user (Business accounts, sole trader accounts and now MasterCard Send).

However, if this allows Starling to become profitable quickly, and continue to grow and offer better services down the line - I’m very happy with everything.

Of course I’d like to see amazing new features that impact me as a user, but I’m in this for the long haul, and if that means I have to wait a little bit (especially whilst competitors are singing about new features which DO benefit the user), I’m content in the knowledge that Starling are on the way to a profit, quicker than anyone else.

I have my fingers crossed that the profit will end up benefiting me as a user in the long run.


I did not say or imply MC Send is an unnecessary/greedy/bad decision from Starling. I’m just giving a quick summary on Starling and MC Send, and the fact is, this does not change anything for us.

It’s not like Starling was going downunder in the first place.