12 June 2017
One Platform - Limitless Choice
The influential millennial generation has grown up with the expectation of immediacy, universal availability and accessibility. Banks and the payments industry are now playing catch up. Mobile phone penetration now reaches 100% in some developing countries with many people owning multiple handsets, while mature cloud-based services such as Spotify and Dropbox, and the emergence of platform-based companies such as Uber and AirBnB feature seamlessly integrated payment mechanisms.
Their success demonstrates the ability for services to be delivered globally in an efficient and cost effective way. By comparison, the payments industry has not adopted these technology trends, instead operating fragmented systems, built and managed for each market.
So what is next for immediate payments, and how can we bring the experiences and behaviours of other parts of digital life to the world of payments? We believe a number of themes will shape this conversation: the movement from local to regional and global; a growing recognition of the value opportunity, and; the power of the proxy platform and mobile commerce.
Local to Global
The drive to modernise payments has, until now, been tackled incrementally, with individual countries updating their infrastructure and introducing new functionality in isolation.
From an international perspective, this has led to a fragmented architecture that is frustrating for those who want to transact across borders, and expensive for banks, who find themselves replicating problems and solutions across multiple territories. Approaching modernisation as a regional or global, rather than a national challenge will lead to solutions that have greater reach and which provide customers with payment opportunities that remove complexity, improve mobility and reduce costs.
For banks it will help to address integration issues and avoid duplication. And it will help tackle financial crime by offering greater transparency and the ability to track money across a larger population of accounts.
Critical to the adoption of this global mindset will be the engagement of players who can offer global scale: organisations that have a brand and an operating model that already transcends national borders.