Global payments system provider VocaLink announced Monday (Jan. 25) that it will enter into a new partnership in order to enable access to the Faster Payments Scheme for a number of U.K. financial institutions.
“The collaboration marks a significant development for the retail banking sector,” Jim Wadsworth, product director of VocaLink, explained in a statement. “We are delighted to be working with Raphaels Bank to offer financial services providers — and their customers — simple and secure access to the U.K. payments core infrastructure.”
VocaLink will join forces with Raphaels Bank, which is a new member of the Faster Payments Scheme and is poised to provide other payment service providers with access to the U.K.’s core payments infrastructure via VocaLink’s PayPort service, the press release said.
John Box, head of strategic partnerships at Raphaels Bank payment services, added: “Raphaels recently announced its intention to become a member of the Faster Payments Scheme. Our direct participation will allow us to offer sponsorship to other financial institutions and payment service providers who wish to access the scheme via our membership.”
Just last month, VocaLink signed a pact to develop a real-time payment service in the U.S., working in tandem with The Clearing House (TCH).
The companies said that the deal comes through a letter of intent, and no financial terms were disclosed. The buildout of the system will begin immediately, the firms said.
The system, once complete, will be the “most comprehensive real-time payments system ever developed,” the firms explained in a press release. The focus will be on allowing companies to send and receive real-time payments across existing accounts at financial institutions, with message capabilities that “go well beyond basic payments.”
The new platform will comply with global standards (ISO 20022) and will, after debuting in North America, go on to be launched in Europe and Asia, with initial movement across major financial centers, the companies said. The link between the two companies follows, by several years, VocaLink’s speed in bringing the U.K.’s Faster Payments Service to market. TCH is the sole private sector wire operator in the United States, with market share of about 50 percent of all transactions along those payments rails in the U.S. The main customers are commercial banks and credit unions.