The MyBank pan-European e-authorisation solution for online payments, orchestrated by EBA Clearing, has launched today with 28 participating banks, including nine payment banks in Italy representing 27 institutions such as Intesa SanPaolo and Veneto Banca. The nationwide rollout in Italy, which is taking the lead for the project, will be followed by a new range of e-payment, identification and online e-commerce services by the end of this year, added the participating banks. A total of 36 other banks across Europe, representing all the bank owners of EBA Clearing, are signed up to join the e-authorisation platform later in the year.
The MyBank cross-border electronic e-authorisation solution from 64 European banks, will allow European consumers to pay for shopping via the internet or mobile channels without sharing account details, as it provides a protected link to the consumer’s own online bank account. It is effectively a portal linking customers directly to their own online bank, and EBA Clearing hopes its MyBank logo will be placed on merchant websites alongside Visa, MasterCard or PayPal payment options, for instance, so that banks remain part of the valuable, front-end financial services ecosystem.
Speaking at the recent Tomorrow’s Transactions conference in London, John Broxis, a director with EBA Clearing, explained that the platform is a real-time authorisation solution, not a real-time payment platform, so participating merchants might actually get the payment itself tomorrow. Bank can, of course, add e-payment services on to the platform as the Italian lead banks have announced their intention to do so and many other services can be run off the bank of the MyBank platform.
“No loading of money to wallets is necessary [as its direct from an existing bank account], no extra regulation is needed and the merchant is not given any data, enhancing security,” claimed Broxis at the Tomorrow’s Transactions event, when listing the benefits of MyBank. Other benefits include no interchange fees and ready compliance with the single euro payments area (SEPA) formats that are coming into force on the 1 February 2014 migration date.
In essence, therefore, MyBank is a pan-European version of the long-established iDEAL bank-led payments platform in the Netherlands, but with cross-border capabilities. Identity solutions should be possible on the platform in future as well. “[the solution] can put banks back in the heart of electronic e-payments,” concluded Broxis. “Banks see a lot of intermediaries between their customer and the merchant, and obviously want to keep them in the banking ecosystem.” Staying in the game means banks can then cross-sell and keep some of the value-add services that use the old payment rails for themselves in the developing online and mobile e-commerce arena.
More retail bank customers and merchants will be signed up to MyBank through the year, states EBA Clearing. A lone bank from France, Bred Banque Populaire, participated in the launch but others are expected to follow suit during two additional joining windows in the summer and later in the year, says EBA Clearing.
“By deploying MyBank, financial institutions across SEPA are supporting their customers in further unlocking the European e-commerce market,” said Giorgio Ferrero, the chairman of EBA Clearing in a statement. “The solution provides the safe and familiar payment experience that many buyers require to successfully complete their Internet shopping.”
According to the chief executive officer (CEO), Gilbert Lichter, the MyBank solution will also generate important cost savings for public agencies, utility companies and other billers, which could ease the processing burden on treasurers, banks, payment providers and other participants in the financial supply chain in future years. “It will help to further automate their billing processes, while facilitating customers’ payment initiation through their online banking,” added Lichter.