VocaLink starts life with launch of European payments service

Newly formed payments giant VocaLink has launched a pan-European payment service in partnership with 10 international banks.

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Newly formed payments giant VocaLink has launched a pan-European payment service in partnership with 10 international banks.

VocaLink has been created from the merger between payments processor Voca and cash machine network firm Link. The new firm will provide both cash machine and automated payment services and is expected to be one of the biggest payment processors in Europe, putting through more than 8bn transactions a year.

The company marked formal completion of the merger with the launch of the €CSM European payments partnership, with founder members including Lloyds TSB, Royal Bank of Scotland, Bank of America, Citi and ABN Amro.

The €CSM payment service will support payment clearing and settlement under the Single Euro Payments Area (Sepa) from January 2008, when Sepa comes into effect. It is designed to provide economies of scale for participating banks in the newly widened and liberalised Sepa payments landscape.

Mike Hampson, head of financial institutions, transaction banking at ABN Amro said: “The launch of this new clearing and settlement mechanism opens a new chapter in international payments. Sepa raises many complex challenges and it makes sense for European banks to solve these together.

“ABN Amro is therefore delighted to work with VocaLink to help establish this bank network that ensures reach and inter-connectivity throughout the Sepa and beyond.”

VocaLink said the service would offer core transaction processing and new facilities including corporate access services, direct debit mandate management, payment exceptions management, compliance services and non-Sepa payment processing. Chief executive
Marion King said: “The scale of our operation and breadth of our service portfolio means that we can help banks of all sizes meet the challenges of the future.”

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