UK Real-Time Payments System to Open for New Players

by Tristan Hugo-Webb 0

The UK’s real-time network, Faster Payments has released aproposal that would encourage new alternative payment service providers (PSPs),technology giants and challenger banks to use the platform and remainattractive to consumers as they increasingly demand immediate payment andbanking services.

Today, the Faster Payments network has 10 major bankingmembers who connect directly to the service; while a further 400 PSPs accessthe platform indirectly through a sponsor bank. Commenting on the proposal, NickCaplan, independent chairman of Faster Payments said, “Our aim is for our worldclass service to be available to as many end users as possible from any of thefinancial organizations they choose to use. We believe our New Access Modelwill benefit both Payment Service Providers and technology suppliers byextending participation opportunities.”

With increased competition in the UK retail banking andpayments space the theme du jour and the potential reporting requirement to thenew Payment Systems Regulator on direct access in April 2015 the move by FasterPayments seems to be an attempt to be proactive and start off on the right footwith the new regulator. Though existing players may prefer the status quo, theopening of the UK market should have positive results for consumers, just asthe regulators want from increased competition.

Overview by Tristan Hugo-Webb, Associate Director, International Advisory Service for Mercator Advisory Group

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