Innovation

Partnering for scale and reliability: Improving cross border payments

By David Josephs, Head of Visa Direct, Europe

As the digital payments landscape changes, consumers and businesses are continually looking for simpler and more convenient ways to pay and be paid. Whether paying a friend or local business or sending money to a family member overseas, we should always be able to access the most efficient ways of moving and tracking our money.

However, the way that we move money across borders has traditionally been an opaque and inefficient experience, leaving both consumers and businesses confused and out-of-pocket. With the estimated cross-border revenue at $230 billion in 2018[i], there is a huge opportunity to improve the way that we are sending and receiving money overseas and a real need to simplify the user experience.

 

How Visa can help

Visa is focused on making it easier to send and receive money than ever before. Our real-time[ii] push payments platform - Visa Direct - is just one of the ways that we are doing this, enabling the near real time transfer of money underpinned by our global network.

Around $689 billion of cross border payments occur globally each year[iii], meaning that improving the experience of sending and receiving money overseas is more important than ever. However, most of these payments travel across aged and inefficient systems resulting in costly processing and poor user experiences. As Visa operates one of the world’s largest payments networks, we facilitate cross-border payments and also provide a reliable and scalable platform from which to extend our capabilities. By collaborating with other partners in the ecosystem, we can use our position to improve the payment experience of both senders and receivers paying for goods and services overseas.

 

How Visa Direct Works

Visa Direct is being used in a number of different sectors both in Europe and across the globe. The most recent of these is TransferWise, a global technology company for international payments, which has recently implemented the Visa Direct solution to bring even greater convenience, speed, and transparency to their customers. Visa Direct integrates directly with TransferWise offering customers an additional ability to quickly and securely move money to debit cards in real-time[iv]. Currently available in Spain, TransferWise customers will have the option to retrieve funds transferred from overseas using the Visa Direct capability and benefit from improved convenience and speed. During 2020 TransferWise will look to expand the capability to other countries, enabling customers across the globe to receive funds transferred from overseas in a much quicker and simpler way.

 

What’s next?

This is just one example of how we’re bringing our scale and reliability to international payments. At Visa, we are committed to working with partners across the industry to improve the process of sending and receiving money overseas. Through a combination of the existing Visa network and our recently acquired Earthport network, Visa Direct clients will soon be able to push payments to the majority of the world’s banked population. This means businesses and individuals will be able to send payments through Visa and have them delivered across the globe, through either card or account credentials.

With the reliability and reach of our global network, we believe we are well positioned to significantly improve the cross border payments experience, helping customers and businesses to move money across borders in a much simpler way.

For more information on how to partner with Visa Direct, visit https://www.visa.co.uk/run-your-business/visa-direct.html

 

 

[i] Tracking the sources of robust payments growth: McKinsey Global Payments Report 2019 https://www.mckinsey.com/industries/financial-services/our-insights/tracking-the-sources-of-robust-payments-growth-mckinsey-global-payments-map

[ii] Actual fund availability varies by financial institution and region. Visa requires fast-funds enabled issuers to make funds available to their recipient cardholders within a maximum of 30 minutes of approving the transaction. Please refer to your Visa representative and the Visa Direct Original Credit Transaction Global Implementation Guide for more information.

[iii] World Bank. Migration and Development Brief 31, “Migration and Remittances: Recent Developments and Outlook,” April 2019. available from www.knomad.org

[iv] Actual fund availability varies by financial institution and region. Visa requires fast-funds enabled issuers to make funds available to their recipient cardholders within a maximum of 30 minutes of approving the transaction. Please refer to your Visa representative and the Visa Direct Original Credit Transaction Global Implementation Guide for more information.

 

 

Payment technology