MasterCard Inc. is planning to use Brazil's rising affluence to compensate for slow growth in the United States, according to Walter Macnee, its president for global markets.
The Purchase, N.Y., company plans to develop products and services to meet demand from Brazilians who are moving up the social ladder as a result of their country's economic growth, Mr. Macnee said Thursday in Sao Paulo.
Brazil's economy expanded 5.8% in the first quarter and is expected to expand 4.7% this year, compared with 1.5% in the United States.
"Brazil seems more politically stable than other emerging markets," Mr. Macnee said. "There are other emerging markets that are huge, massive high-growth markets but where we can't be as comfortable."
MasterCard aims to reduce dependency on revenue from the United States, where rising unemployment and food and fuel prices are squeezing consumption. Its U.S. cardholder transaction growth slowed to 6.2% in the second quarter, from 9.8% a year earlier. In the second quarter transaction volume grew 18% in Europe, 19% in Asia, 17% in Latin America, and 32% in South Asia, the Middle East, and Africa.
"The rest of the world is growing faster than the U.S., so within a given time it will have a bigger share," Mr. Macnee said. "Diversification is very powerful to us."