North American Region Card Market Valued at $5.4 Billion in 2020

By Jennifer Kohlhepp, Managing Editor, ICMA

The North American region of the global card industry, which is made up of the United States, Canada and the Caribbean, manufactured 7.4 billion cards in 2020. Despite the 22.2% decrease in unit volume from the prior year as a result of the global COVID-19 pandemic, this region’s revenue from cards manufactured increased 2.3% over the prior year to $3.3 billion.

The North American region personalized and fulfilled 5.9 billion cards in 2020, a 20.7% decrease in unit volume from the prior year. Personalization and fulfillment revenue dropped 15.3% to $2.1 billion.

“North America will experience growth as it recovers from the pandemic,” said Al Vrancart, ICMA founder emeritus and industry advisor. “Financial contactless cards will continue penetration in the United States and North America will continue to see growth in the government and health, transportation, access control and gift card market segments. However, innovations and new technology and processes will continue to change the landscape.”

The number of traditional (magnetic/barcode/other) cards manufactured in North America decreased 25.6% to 13.8 billion. The number of chip cards manufactured in this region decreased 13.8% to 16.1 billion. Smart card revenue decreased by 8.4% to $15.2 billion.

In 2020, the number of financial cards in this region decreased 2.5% to 1.4 billion. However, this market segment’s revenue increased 48.1% to $1.3 billion. However, this market segment’s revenue increased 48.1% to $1.3 billion as a result of the enriched mix of contactless cards.

The number of access control cards decreased 39.1% to 350 million and the number of transportation cards decreased 39% to 250 million. Access control card revenue totaled $183 million, a 25.3% decrease from the prior year, and transportation card revenue fell 36.2% to $127 million.

The number of loyalty promotional cards decreased 33.3% to 350 million and the number of ID membership cards fell 25.9% to 140 million. Loyalty promotional card revenue was down 33.3% from the prior year to $28 million and ID membership card revenue dropped 21.1% to $15 million.

North America produced 2 billion gift cards, which is 29.8% less than it did in 2019. Gift card revenue fell 29.8% to $160 million.

The number of retail and gas cards decreased 11.3% to 900 million and the amount of revenue these cards generated increased 9.6% to $320 million.

The number of SIM cards decreased 13.2% from the prior year to 525 million. This market segment’s revenue amounted to $485 million, which is 17.8% less than it was in 2019.

The number of government and health cards decreased 7.7% to 600 million units and their revenue decreased 3.1% from the prior year to $570 million.

North America has the third largest share (22.4%) of the global card industry, having manufactured $3.3 billion worth of cards and personalized and fulfilled $2.1 billion worth of cards in 2020. The Asia Pacific region has the largest (41%) share, having manufactured $7.5 billion worth of cards and personalized and fulfilled $2.4 billion worth of cards in 2020. Europe has the second largest share (23.2%), having manufactured $3.9 billion worth of cards and personalized and fulfilled $1.7 billion worth of cards.

The information in this article was compiled from Vrancart’s March 2021 North American Card Industry Statistics and Market Trends webcast, which is available to ICMA members by logging in to the members-only section of ICMA.com.

ICMA members can download the complete Global Card Market and Personalization & Fulfillment Reports in the members-only section of ICMA.com for free. Non-members can purchase the reports by emailing info@icma.com.

 

 

 

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