Icon launches Payments At Breakfast series

7 May 2015

breakfast2-280x184-w700Icon Solutions was delighted to host our first Payments Breakfast roundtable, in association with Finextra, this morning.

The topic of this exclusive roundtable was ‘The new access model to Faster Payments: Will it provide ‘speed for all’?’ and included guest speakers Craig Tillotson (Chief Executive, Faster Payments), Otto Benz (Director Strategic Payments, Virgin Money) and Tom Hay (Head of Payments, Icon Solutions).

The attendee list included representatives a number of traditional and challenger banks such as Lloyds, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Atom Bank, CivilisedBank and Starling Bank.

The Speakers

Tom Hay led the discussions by outlining some of the challenges and considerations organisations currently face when wanting to connect to Faster Payments, whilst Craig Tillotson discussed Faster Payments’ plans to provide solutions for some of these challenges via the “New Access Model”. Otto Benz also shared Virgin Money’s first-hand experience in terms of the business case for connecting to Faster Payments, and the strategic need to meet customer expectations.

The Insights

Together the group discussed a range of issues around the spread of immediate payments and increased access to the service. There was general agreement that real-time payments are the way of the future, and that expectations have moved significantly over the past few years. The digital generation expect real-time banking, of which payments is just one part, and will not tolerate the delays inherent in older systems. Corporates too are increasingly demanding “real” Faster Payments – not just same-day batches – as part of their bank’s service.

There was a debate about whether payment services – and indeed, basic banking services in general – would be better supplied by individual tech providers or by a central utility. While the idea of a shared platform has attractions, there was concern that organisations using it would be constrained to the ‘lowest common denominator’. However, there was general agreement that the user experience will be critical in competitive battles in the future. The arrival of Third Party Providers under the auspices of PSD2 will raise the bar in this area, as well as providing a different method to access payment services, via the APIs that banks will have to provide.

The Way Forward

It is clear that Faster Payments is a dynamic area, and that access to the service is becoming an ever-increasing priority for banks, payment service providers and corporates as well as individual consumers.

This roundtable marks the first of many planned payments events for Icon. If you would like to be kept abreast of our Payment related activities and invited to our next event please email saara.day@iconsolutions.com.