SWIFT have ‘allowed’ corporates to have direct multi-bank relationships on their network since 1997, and this month they are celebrating reaching the major milestone of 2,000 corporate groups connected to our network. Now almost half of the Fortune 500 companies use Swift for a reliable, secure and standardised flow of information between them and their banks. Swift believes that this has boosted operational efficiency, lowered costs, and facilitates increased automation and standardisation across the industry. Bold claims that are probably justified, particularly after they launched Swift gpi.
Multi-bank tracking on Swift gpi
In February this year, a mix of 22 banks and corporates initiated a pilot to test the SWIFT gpi for Corporates (g4C) standard that enables corporates to initiate and track gpi payments, to and from multiple banks, directly from their ERP and treasury management systems.
By end of October nine corporates supported by seven gpi banks had successfully implement multi-bank gpi payments and tracking through their treasury applications.
SWIFT gpi for Corporates allows corporates with multiple banking partners to have a fully integrated single view on the status of their cross-border payments in their TMS and ERP systems. Two comments from corporate treasurers show the impact:
- Lisa Wagner, Group Treasury Manager at Microsoft says, “The ability to access a greater level of payment information in a timely manner through SWIFT gpi is bringing immediate benefits to our payments experience with greater transparency and responsiveness to our vendors. Providing multi-bank information all in one place and in the same format fits into our modern finance roadmap.”
- Peter Claus-Landi, Senior Director, Treasury, GE, explains: “The biggest value that gpi delivers to GE, as well as the rest of the corporates, is the transparency and the defined Service Level Agreements around the transaction lifecycle of the payments. With g4C, we will finally be able to have a better understanding of how long it takes for a payment to move from point A to point B, so it will help us with optimising liquidity.”
Pre-gpi payment validation service pilot
Swift announced that it is to begin piloting, in early 2019, an integrated pre-validation gpi payments service, focussing on enabling the speedy identification and elimination of errors and omissions in payment messages.
The pilot is the first stage in the roll-out of Swift’s gpi validation programme. The goal of the pilot is to build the foundation of a new integrated and interactive service that will significantly improve efficiencies in the payments process and which will ultimately be made available to all 10,000 banks across the Swift network.
Based on a real-time API-based mechanism, Swift claims that: “The pilot will enable sending banks to send and receive API calls over SWIFT to seamlessly check beneficiary account information with the ultimate receiving banks. This will allow banks to speedily remedy any inaccurate or missing information, reducing delays and costs.
CTMfile take: Swift is to be congratulated on finally launching their g4C initiative, but why don’t the other half of the Fortune 500 not use Swift? Is it because Swift is not cost-effective for them? What can be done to attract these large corporates?
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