The Nordic's P27, a bank-owned initiative to create a common payments platform across the region, is looking into buying Swedish clearing payment firm Bankgirot.
P27 is a joint initiative created by Danske Bank, Handelsbanken, Nordea, OP Financial Group, SEB and Swedbank that aims to link the Nordic payments region, as well as enable cross-border real-time payments.
“The Nordic region is ahead in both the payments and FinTech industry. Exploring the possibility of establishing P27 is a natural next step for the Nordic banking sector, where we aim to combine the tradition of innovation with technical advancement,” Lars Sjögren, designated CEO of P27, said in the announcement.
Founded in 1959, Bankgirot is currently owned by most of P27’s major players: Danske Bank, Handelsbanken, Länsförsäkringar Bank, Nordea, SEB, Skandiabanken and Swedbank. The firm handles more than six million transactions a day. In fact, all mass payments, including real-time payments in Sweden, are processed by Bankgirot.
A successful acquisition by P27 would boost operational stability and enable the project's ability to achieve real-time and cross-border infrastructure within the Nordic region. In addition, Bankgirot’s knowledge of complex payments and compliance would help P27 establish a common Nordic payment system.
“The present owners look positively on P27’s initiative to potentially acquire Bankgirot. P27 and Bankgirot would together be able to create synergies and efficiency in the migration to the new Nordic system platform. However, it is a long process and the transaction will only be completed when Bankgirot’s owners and relevant authorities have approved the acquisition,” says Mikael Björknert, chair of the board of Bankgirot.
“This would be an important step in realizing the goals of integrating the Nordic payments market. A potential acquisition would define our high ambitions and could enable further synergies within our payment infrastructure that creates increased customer value and more efficient payments within the Nordic region.” added Sjögren.