B2B Payments

EBA Clearing Adds UniCredit To Instant Payments Service

As EBA Clearing continues to test its real-time, cross-border payments solution, the firm has announced another financial services company on-boarded to the service.

UniCredit, based in Italy, said it is testing the RT1 pan-European instant payment solution developed by EBA Clearing, reports said Tuesday (July 25). The firms said UniCredit’s testing of the platform makes it one of the first banks to begin preparing for the rollout of the solution later this year.

The RT1 platform will be made available the same day the European Payment Council’s SEPA Instant Credit Transfer Scheme is launched, the firms added. UniCredit will offer the service first to clients in Italy and Germany starting in November.

“The introduction of euro-denominated instant payments will enable us to better support the payment businss of both our corporate and retail customers in the internal market,” said UniCredit Global Co-Head of Global Transaction Banking Jan Kupfer in a statement. “By providing our customers with payments facilities 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, with payers notified of a successful transaction within seconds, we will greatly enhance the effectiveness of our services and increase customer trust.

“Widespread adoption and new, value-added services that optimize the customer experience will only serve to increase the benefits,” Kupfer said. “In addition, UniCredit’s ongoing digital transformation program will be a further beneficiary of our connection to the new instant payments infrastructure.”

“We are very pleased to count UniCredit among the early frontrunners actively preparing  to join our RT1 system on the launch date of the European instant payments and to roll out this highly attractive new payment method to a multinational customer base,” added EBA Clearing CEO Hays Littlejohn. “Our aim was to provide the European payments industry with a fully fledged pan-European infrastructure system from the start date of SCT Inst, and we are happy to see that RT1 meets the requirements of our funding banks as well as a growing community of fast followers across the continent.”

According to Littlejohn, nearly 30 FIs are planning to connect to the RT1 platform in November, and an additional 70 are slated to join in 2018. Currently, 39 institutions are involved in the development and testing of the RT1 infrastructure.



The pressure on banks to modernize their payments capabilities to support initiatives such as ISO 20022 and instant/real time payments has been exacerbated by the emergence of COVID-19 and the compelling need to quickly scale operations due to the rapid growth of contactless payments, and subsequent increase in digitization. Given this new normal, the need for agility and optimization across the payments processing value chain is imperative.

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