Mastercard is partnering with a bank-owned consortium to build “the most advanced, innovative and efficient payments system in the world”, which will provide real-time and batch payments across the Nordic markets.
The cards giant is pooling resources with pan-Nordic payment network P27 Nordic Payments Platform, a consortium owned by Danske Bank, Handelsbanken, Nordea, OP Financial Group, SEB and Swedbank. The newly-formed initiative references the combined population of Sweden, Denmark, Norway and Finland, which totals 27 million.
“By working together the partnership will connect people across the cluster of countries using multiple currencies,” the announcement by the partners stated. “This bold ambition will transform how money moves for consumers, businesses, society, and the payments industry itself.
“This major investment programme is a world first in terms of a real-time and batch multi-currency platform and will replace the existing payment infrastructure, enabling instant and secure payments at lower costs and increased competitiveness. Participants will be able to send and receive funds immediately across the Nordic markets at a lower cost and with higher security.
“Adding to the speed and convenience of bank account to account payments across the region this will not only offer people greater choice and opportunity, it will improve economic growth and employment by enabling new products, services and business models to develop.”
The partnership adds that developing the underlying infrastructure of the platform, and once established further common products and services based on it are planned.
The Nordic lead
“This exciting partnership will build a world first in terms of a cross region and multi-currency faster payments area,” said Javier Perez, Mastercard’s president for Europe.
“It is also evidence of Mastercard´s vision to drive real choice by being the trusted provider of new payment experiences and broadening our reach into fast bank account payment flows. The Nordic markets are global leaders in the development and usage of electronic payments and this new infrastructure will maintain their advantage over the rest of the world.”
Lars Sjögren, CEO of P27 Nordic Payments Platform commented: “This is change for real. By joining forces across the Nordics we will be able to develop instant payment solutions in a way that each country never would accomplish by themselves.
“By sharing the costs between the Nordic countries, we will get a state-of-the-art payment infrastructure in the Nordics with the highest standard when it comes to security and efficiency; further boosting innovation and growth in the Nordics.”
The partners added that demand from consumers and businesses around the world for instant and account to account payments is growing and the new payment infrastructure would put the Nordic markets at the forefront with an ecosystem that connects all bank accounts.
“Not too far in the future, family and friends might be able to pay each other using mobile devices, regardless of what service they use or which country they live in. Businesses can take advantage of access to a wider network of customers and suppliers, and the seamless movement of money when paying or getting paid. This one single interface will make it easier for banks to handle all payments – domestic, European and beyond.
“For banks, this introduction of a new platform will also provide a real-time view of the multiple schemes that are running, participant information, balances across schemes and the addition of a data-rich message set, empowering participants to explore new revenue opportunities.”
The new payment platform is subject to regulatory approvals and final investment commitments.
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