At the beginning of 2016, long-time collaborator Nationwide Building Society approached 4mediarelations with a simple proposition: to devise, craft and execute an activity that embodied their commitment to technological innovation in the financial world. So we thought: “why not take this commitment ‘out-of-this-world’?” And thus, the idea for executing the first ever contactless payment from space was born, as our experiential team looked to boldly go where no Nationwide card had gone before.
After more than six months of planning, designing and testing every part of the space craft, from the robotic server arm which activated the payment to the bespoke insulation system which combated temperatures of below -40 degress celsius, the payment was ready for launch.
From ground control in the picturesque Breccon Beacons, the craft was propelled into the stratosphere to a height of more than 30 km, the highest ever recorded. Upon activation, the specially developed payment terminal activated, paying for a cup of coffee at Nationwide’s headquarters hundreds of miles away in Swindon.
We had done it: the first ever contactless payment on the edge of space.
To profile the campaign, we produced a full video package including long-form and social edits.
To publicise the activity, 4mediarelations also hosted a day of broadcast interviews from our studios in Clerkenwell, with Nationwide’s head of payments, Paul Horlock, who had the coffee bought for him from the edge of space, alongside former Gadget Show presenter John Bentley.