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Experiencing SWIFT in High Definition

by Harcus Copper, Global Channel Head, SWIFT Corporate Access, Barclays

SWIFTNet is fast becoming the bank communication method of choice for large multinational corporations, particularly those with multiple banking relationships on a global scale. SWIFT’s potential is not restricted to the world’s largest corporations, however. There are now 1,000 corporates connected to their banks via SWIFTNet, with SWIFT announcing a target of 5,000 corporate customers by 2015. With new deployment methods and a growing range of services available, corporations of all sizes can leverage the benefits that SWIFT offers. Key to the success of any connectivity project, from mid-tier to large-cap corporate, is the quality of the implementation. At Barclays, we support over 100 of those corporates currently using SWIFT, with the second highest FIN traffic (the channel for high volume payments and other financial messaging) globally. Consequently, we have built up considerable experience in successfully implementing SWIFT and helping customers to take advantage of opportunities that it presents.

Connectivity models

There are currently three ways to connect to SWIFT:

Direct connectivity: The corporation manages the SWIFT gateway and associated infrastructure directly. This was the approach taken by early adopters when service bureaus either did not exist or were still in the early stages of their development. Since then, service bureaus have matured and have often been acquired by larger businesses, such as the acquisition of SMA by Bottomline Technologies, which gives corporate users greater confidence in the stability of a potential connectivity partner. Consequently, while some very large multinationals continue to connect to SWIFT directly, this is rarely the case for new implementations and many early users have also migrated to service bureaus.