Frequently Asked Questions

Co-Branded Cards FAQs

Q: What is a co-brand card program?

A: A co-brand program is a partnership that brings together MasterCard, a MasterCard-issuing financial institution and a suitable partner company wishing to grow its business. The three parties work together to create a card program that is then marketed to the partner company's customer base. A co-brand card is a form of payment that offers added value to the partner's customers through a partnership between their business and the bankcard issuer.

Q: What kinds of businesses have successful co-brand programs?

A: Many different industries have successfully implemented co-brand programs, including airlines, gas companies, automotive companies, warehouse clubs, and supermarkets. One thing these companies have in common is a growing base of customers who have occasion to purchase products or services on a recurring basis.

Q: Who is responsible for promoting the co-brand card?

A: The level of support provided and the degree of responsibility for designing and implementing the solicitations and card promotions will depend on the agreement reached between the partner and the card issuer. MasterCard has many different levels of support and expertise available to help a company market its co-brand card and grow its business.

Q: What does a MasterCard co-brand card look like?

A: MasterCard rules permit the partner's logo to be a dominant feature on the face of the card. The cards also carry the MasterCard logo and a hologram and must conform to certain MasterCard design standards. The name of the MasterCard issuing financial institution may appear, but it is not required. This and other card design details will be determined by the partner and the card issuer.

Q: How do I find an issuer for a co-brand alliance?

A: The first place to begin is with a bank or financial institution with which your company already has a relationship. Or, MasterCard can provide a list of potential financial institutions from among the thousands we have done business with over the years.

Q: What role does MasterCard play in developing a co-brand program?

A: That may depend upon the goals and budget of the partner company, but MasterCard has a dedicated staff of highly experienced co-brand specialists available who can help a company evaluate and establish a co-brand partnership that will meet the objectives of all parties involved. To speak to a specialist, please call Mike Zieg at