We remove card scheme barriers to entry.

The idea of Optimus Cards was born when the founders of the company became aware that smaller financial institutions’ customers were being deprived of access to debit cards as a result of barriers to entry which favoured organisations with scale.

The barriers to real debit cards

Financial institutions offering their own debit card scheme require significant technical, infrastructure, human resource, and financial investment. They must first go through the process of joining a scheme provider, such as Mastercard, to establish their card’s point of sale functionality. Then, they must technically interface their back office systems to the scheme via a card transaction payment processor, such as First Data. Additionally, they need to acquire or build a card management and settlement system, a massive technical and operational undertaking.

To support the ongoing operation, at least one call centre must be established, with a Payment Card Industry (PCI) compliant physical and IT environment. Staff must be trained, and a critical mass hired so as to offer 24 x 7 x 365 support. Last but not least, financial institutions are required to deposit significant guarantees with the scheme provider, all of this before their first customer has applied for a card.

The Optimus Cards difference

Our debit card is linked directly to your member accounts, with real-time messaging for seamless transacting, without the need for third party prefunded cards or accounts. The Optimus Cards program operates the same model enjoyed by major financial institutions, with total direct-to-account linkage that doesn’t dilute your member relationship with external accounts and brands. We are also IT back-end agnostic, requiring only real time messaging capability in order to start up your turnkey program. Optimus Cards delivers infrastructure, PCI compliance, and trained staff. Our “pay per use” model means that apart from card artwork and IT interfacing to Optimus Cards, you pay only for what your members use.

“The card fits in to our core system so no bolt on, members can see it online with their other products from us and best of all it sits on our balance sheet so has the FSCS protection. Members love the card and we found the Optimus team professional and flexible in their approach.  We look forward to progressing our business with them.”


Carol McHarg – CE, 1st Alliance (Ayrshire) Credit Union

We partner with the best in the industry to put together your custom card program.