Seven Dutch banks have recently started to introduce instant payments using the CSM (Clearing and Settlement Mechanism) system of equensWorldline SE, a subsidiary of Worldline [Euronext: WLN], European leader in the payments and transactional services industry. Due to the large-scale launch of real-time payments in the Netherlands, equensWorldline has become the biggest processor of instant payments in the Eurozone, handling millions of instant payment transactions per week.
The Dutch banking community is a frontrunner in the field of instant payments due to the fact that in the Netherlands it is generally accepted that real-time payments are the future. ABN AMRO, ING, Rabobank, SNS, ASN Bank, RegioBank and Knab are now gradually switching all their internet and mobile banking customers to instant payments.
equensWorldline shares the view that there will be a shift from traditional batch payments to instant payments. According to equensWorldline, real-time payments will become the new normal – not only for domestic but also for cross-border transactions. For this reason, equensWorldline is fully committed to instant payments. In addition, Instant Payment CSM equensWorldline supports the transactions of de Volksbank via the Instant Payments Payment Engine service.
TIPS Gateway service
At the end of last year, equensWorldline also launched the TIPS Gateway service, which will soon be implemented by several internationally operating Tier 1, tier 2 and tier 3 banks. Using the TIPS Gateway service, the contracted banks complement their reach in instant payments and have a full pan-European reach, in accordance with EPC SCT Inst Scheme Rulebooks.
Customers demand instant services
According to Michael Steinbach, CEO of equensWorldline, the question is not if all European banks/banking communities will follow the Dutch example and embrace instant payments, but more accurately when they will follow. “Customers expect direct services these days. This is evident in every sector, like retail (same-day delivery) and communication (Whatsapp), but also in the financial sector. Through instant payments, transactions are processed immediately. Besides that, real-time payments are continuously available, even on weekends and public holidays. That’s why we are convinced that instant payments will become the new normal. The Dutch banks are among the first to realize it, but in due time many countries in the Eurozone – and beyond – will follow.”
Instant Payments beyond Europe
The demand for instant payments is also increasing outside of Europe. The equensWorldline Instant Payments CSM caters for this market demand and is established to enable banks and PSPs for Instant Payments Clearing and Settlement services not only in Europe but also globally. Last year, the Central Bank of Aruba (CBA) contracted equensWorldline to provide a new central Instant Payments infrastructure replacing their current clearing & settlement system. The implementation of the new Instant Payments CSM enables Aruba to leapfrog to Instant Payments by completely switching from traditional payment processing to the new Instant Payments infrastructure at once.