Billion Dollar Deals and How They Changed Your World

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Series 1 - Episode 2 Money



Jacques Peretti looks at digital payment systems this week. Sounds dull? Not a bit of it: the nuts and bolts of the drive to rid the world of cash are fascinating, in a mildly disturbing way.

Peretti relates how when RBS were trialling the technology that would become contactless payments, they noticed that using it meant people didn’t just spend quickly, they spent [italics] more.[italics] (A scientist has located the unconscious “pain of payment” reflex in the brain that contactless can bypass.) Also: how a Vodafone subsidiary took over the money supply of Kenya.


Jacques Peretti explores the deals that shaped the way people understand money. From the invention of PayPal in the 1990s to the smartphone app economy that followed 10 years later, he reveals how technology giants brought about the digital payment revolution. He investigates why people are choosing to turn their backs on using cash, as card and contactless transactions become the most popular way for people to spend their money, and explores what is going on behind-the-scenes in the world of digitalised spending.

Cast & Crew

Presenter Jacques Peretti
Director Will Yearsley
Director Stuart Bernard
Executive Producer Emma Cooper
Executive Producer Ceri Aston