Bo Liljefors, Chief Product Officer
Consumers have quickly become accustomed to instant everything. High-quality music streaming in milliseconds. Hollywood blockbusters at the click of a button. And we can dial in movie-quality video calls with friends and family across the planet within a few seconds. In this real-time world of instant gratification, it is understandably difficult for consumers to grasp why payments can still take hours – or even days.
Anyone working in payments will tell you “it’s not that simple” but it doesn’t change the fact that consumer expectations have evolved. And the businesses that can best cater to these changing expectations will have a competitive advantage and stand to capture a bigger share of the market.
The Instant Payments Opportunity
This has created a huge instant payments opportunity, but today, Europe’s real-time payments landscape remains fragmented. SEPA Instant coverage varies from country to country, while countries outside the Eurozone currency union have their own schemes. There have been some notable efforts to overcome this fragmentation – the most recent example being P27 Nordic Payments, which has now run aground. The European Commission’s proposed instant payments mandate is a step in the right direction, but it’s no “silver bullet” for the inefficiencies that hold back instant payments. Also, it doesn’t help merchants and businesses that are looking for a way to address their payment pain points today.
However, we believe that open banking can play an important role in giving merchants a solution in the here and now. This is why we have developed Brite Instant Payments Network (Brite IPN) as the technological backbone of our open banking-based instant payments and payouts. It is a purpose-built proprietary network that connects banks with businesses and consumers, enabling true “out of the box” instant bank payments.
Brite’s mission has always been to offer fast, secure, and convenient payments. We took an open banking-first approach, aware of the fact that while a number of providers can facilitate payments based on open banking rails, there were few that gave businesses a complete solution.
The Benefits of Brite IPN
Brite IPN is a significant step forward in our mission, and it is the engine that drives our instant bank payments. It offers merchants significant advantages over open banking PIS (Payment Initiation Service) solutions that initiate bank payments on behalf of consumers but are not part of the flow of funds. Brite IPN is also supported by our merchant FX capabilities, which enables merchants to fund or request settlement in a currency of their choice.
From a merchant’s perspective, this further builds on the key benefits of Brite; 24/7/365 instant payment processing, automated reconciliation and reporting, smart routing to optimise speed and efficiency, and end-to-end payment visibility. We believe that Brite IPN can play an important role in addressing the fragmentation that is holding back instant bank payments adoption in Europe. Although regulation (including the forthcoming PSD3) has a critical role to play, in an instant everything world, we’re excited to take open banking payments to the next level with Brite IPN and give businesses a way to keep their customers happy today.