The UK’s Faster Payments Scheme (FPS) is asking for expressions of interest for the renewal and management of its infrastructure – the services that enable the nation’s 24/7 real-time payment service, writes Banking Technology (Paybefore‘s sister publication).
This is the first of a three-phase competition for the infrastructure for up to ten years. The renewal will migrate the Faster Payments Service to be the “ISO20022, 24/7, real-time component” of the New Payments Architecture.
As reported in July, the Payments Strategy Forum, created by the UK’s Payment Systems Regulator (PSR) in 2015, launched a consultation on its blueprint for the New Payments Architecture.
Craig Tillotson, chief executive of FPS, says the “process will help ensure the integrity of the Faster Payments Service” and it’s “also an important milestone on the road towards the New Payments Architecture set to be delivered by the New Payment Systems Operator”.
Those qualifying following the expression of interest will be invited to participate in a request for information phase, and subsequently invited to submit a full proposal. The winning bidder is expected to be selected in Q3 2018.
Details on the phases of the competition and more information can be found here.
FPS says 17 banks and building societies are participants of the scheme, and over 400 other financial institutions are able to offer the service, making it available to more than 52 million current account holders in the UK.
In August 2017, FPS says it processed 135.8 million payments amounting to a total of £116 billion for the month. This was a 10% increase in the number payments and a 15% increase in total value on those processed in August 2016.