Taking advantage of open-banking disruption

There is no doubt that fintech firms are disrupting the banking sector. Customers are beginning to rely more on the convenience and ease of use of digital services, which is adding strain on traditional banking institutions. Read more

Enabling innovation through payments platform transformation

Today, global trends including changing customer demands, new entrants, innovative technologies, regulatory pressure, higher costs and lower profit margins are driving significant changes to the financial services market. Regulations are tightened and compliance costs for financial institutions are increasing, while initiatives like PSD2 have opened up the financial market to innovative competition. In the wake of rapidly evolving customer expectations, new digital standards for financial services are now increasingly being met by a wave of agile fintech companies which leverage technological advances to enhance customer experiences. Read more

Should there be a PSD3 to really open the market?

Since PSD2 became effective in January 2018, the market has slowly started to act on it. We see that until now only a few banks have published their PSD2 APIs. The main reason for this slow take-up lies in the fact that the RTS (Regulatory Technical Standards), which determine how some of the PSD2 stipulations have to be interpreted, only become effective as of 14 September 2019.

But don’t be mistaken. Even though there’s not much visibility yet, behind the scenes the preparations are definitely ongoing. Looking at the most effective use cases, both from the side of the banks as from the sides of other parties like PSP’s, retailers, Telco’s, consumer finance companies, insurance companies et cetera, the market is definitely preparing. But to effectively pursue the opportunities that arise from PSD2 takes time, because the access to the account functionality has to be integrated into a wallet, or connected to a loyalty system, or to a credit scoring engine. Also the go-to-market takes time because testing is needed, which means preparing demo’s, Proof of Concepts, et cetera.

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Is a national digital currency the means to a completely cashless society?

Sweden is going cashless too quickly, according to a letter published by the Riksbank in October. The Swedish central bank wants to ensure that cash does not disappear entirely in the short term. How? The Riksbank wants to compel all banks and other credit institutions to continue to offer cash services for the time being. The Swedish bank is asking the government to support this plan and is the first central bank to take measures to prevent the complete disappearance of banknotes and coins. Currently, only 13 per cent of payments in Sweden are made with cash. Read more

SIBOS Wrap-up – Key themes of 2019 identified

Time has flown by, Sibos 2018 has come to an end for me. A few days filled with discussions, presentations and sessions highlighting countless different visions on the future of payments have inspired thousands of professionals. Sibos has been the vibrant global hub of the payments industry this past week; almost every financial organisation was present. I consider Sibos an opportunity to listen and learn, so we are updated on the latest developments and can anticipate innovations to come. Read more

SIBOS day 3 – How Instant Payments can make Europe a leader in innovation

Exciting times lie ahead for the ECB now that the pan-European infrastructure TARGET Instant Payment Settlement (TIPS) is going live next month. This platform enables banks to initiate immediate payments 24 hours a day, 365 days per year. The session The Eurosystem’s response to an evolving payments landscape revolved around the launch which will take place on 30 November. 20 banks and 3 clearing houses will be connected from the start. Many more banks are expected to follow in 2019.

As mentioned in one of my earlier blogs, at equensWorldline we are happy to see ECB’s Instant Payments platform becoming a reality in Europe. Evidently, we support TIPS and will provide our clients with a gateway to this platform.

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SIBOS day 3 – How do fintechs see the future?

In addition to banks, also technology suppliers, third parties and fintechs present their views on the future of the payments industry on Sibos. The funny thing is that the vibe of a session changes when fintechs are on stage. The suits make way for jeans and sometimes even shorts and short sleeves. At the same time, the story they tell is very interesting. The session The Future of Money, that took place in a packed room on day three of Sibos, was proof that fintechs have detailed and up-to-date visions of the future. They covered how data are the new oil, the role of bigtechs in the payments industry and, of course, the future of banking. Read more

SIBOS day 2 – The importance of customer experience for the future of banks

It is impossible to know what banks will look like in ten years’ time. The question whether the current banks will all still exist in a decennium is even justified. More than half of the visitors of the session The bank of Tomorrow on the second day of Sibos expect that only 40 to 60 percent of all banks will survive the technological and social developments. A quarter of them think that eighty percent of the banks will still exist in ten years’ time. The bottom line: once again it became clear that the disruptive nature of new technologies, innovations and changes in customer behavior has major consequences for the future of banks.

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SIBOS day 2 – What Europeans can learn from Australia’s Instant Payments experiences

Most payment experts believe that Instant Payments (IP) will become the primary payment method in the future. This is one of the conclusions of the Really a real-time reality session on day 2 of Sibos. During this session, NPP Australia, EBA Clearing and the ECB shared their IP experiences. This session came at a perfect time, as the pan-European infrastructure TARGET Instant Payment Settlement (TIPS) will be launched by the ECB in Europe next month.

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SIBOS day 2 – Darwin already knew: agility is key for survival, also for banks

According to Thomas Feiler, Head of Payments Product Management at equensWorldline, Charles Darwin predicted the fate of banks years ago, when he actually talked about the theory of biological evolution. “It is not the strongest species that survive, nor the most intelligent that survive. It is the ones that are most adaptable to change,” Darwin explained.

That is exactly the situation banks find themselves in, was the message of Feiler during his Open Theatre Session on the second day of Sibos. Agility is one of the key words for banks that want to become future-proof. To do so, the banking IT-systems have to change. Feiler explained in front of a packed room, where spectators even had to stand, what this means and how outsourcing can play an important role in the banks’ adoption of new digital platforms and value-added services.

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