Maltese Bank aims to achieve lower cost SEPA compliance via the Simplex Service Bureau

2 November 2007

APS Bank in Malta announced today an innovative move to achieve SEPA compliance by outsourcing to UK based Simplex Consulting, to leverage its Simplex Bureau solution for SEPA compliance over SWIFTNet.

Banks operating in Euro payments have been aiming to achieve the mandated SEPA compliance this year, which includes the need to support new XML schemas and be reachable across the Euro zone. The price model for cross border Euro payments is set to change, and outsourcing payment processing activities to an independent solutions provider is seen as a compelling option for achieving the required cost reductions.

The Simplex solution leverages its existing SWIFT Service Bureau and SWIFTNet FileAct connectivity to reach either the Pan-European clearing house EBAStep2, or a major Euro clearing bank. Payments are transformed from SWIFT and local proprietary formats to SEPA XML and bulked and sent to and from the ACH or major Euro bank.

Simon Micallef, Senior Manager – Corporate Services at APS Bank commented on the benefits of this outsourced approach. “We need to be SEPA compliant as we enter the Euro, and so we evaluated both ‘system purchase’ and ‘outsourcing’ solutions. We selected the Simplex Service Bureau solution because it was the best fit for our business needs and a cost effective route to compliance. Simplex will build SEPA formats and run the SWIFT gateway for us as a managed service alongside their other clients. This will derive significant cost and functionality advantages to our organisation.”

David Reeve, CEO at Simplex commented “APS has proved itself to be a highly innovative organisation and we welcome them to the growing list of banks and NBFIs using our Service Bureau. This SEPA solution using our SWIFT Bureau is, we believe, unique in the market today and we are finding a great deal of interest from banks looking to be SEPA compliant at a low cost.”

The solution leverages the technology of one of the leading independent vendors of SWIFT technology, Sterci SA of Geneva. Simon Kalfon CEO of Sterci commented: ”We are delighted to see our partner Simplex applying our SWIFT certified technology also now for SEPA. This demonstrates an alternative and valuable approach to add to that taken by our major banking customers who preferred to licence the technology for their internal use. We have invested heavily to develop a class leading SWIFTNet FileAct solution and transformation capability and it is good to see another application of this for SEPA”.

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