Mondex and visacash: A first (failed) attempt at an electronic purse

Bernardo Bátiz-Lazo, Tony Moretta*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


This chapter looks at the ephemeral life of the first electronic purses: Mondex (1991) and Visa Cash (1996). Launched at the dawn of the Internet era, both were technologically advanced and Mondex in particular invested heavily in security. But in spite of large, international players buying into the concept, both systems failed to develop widespread customer acceptance and therefore, enough business volume to become viable. Mondex, VisaCash and a long list of other e-cash and electronic purse schemes have demonstrated that convincing people to adopt high-tech alternatives to cash is extremely hard and can be very expensive. This chapter thus provides valuable lessons in what to avoid to those interested in electronic money.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Book of Payments
Subtitle of host publicationHistorical and Contemporary Views on the Cashless Society
EditorsBernardo Batiz-Lazo, Leonidas Efthymiou
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Number of pages9
ISBN (Electronic)9781137602312
ISBN (Print)9781137602305, 9781349929320
Publication statusPublished - 6 Dec 2016
Externally publishedYes


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