Financial messaging network Swift has set January 2007 as the live date for Release 6 of its SwiftAlliance interface portfolio, designed to bring users up-to-speed with the forthcoming SwiftNet Phase 2 upgrade.
Currently being piloted by a select group of customers, the new release promises an enhanced relationship management tool (RMA), Hardware Security Modules for PKI, access to MX-driven SwiftSolutions, and a new Web Services Host adapter for communication with Soap-compatible back office applications.
Pierre Pouillard, SwiftNet projects manager, BNP Paribas, one of the institutions piloting the new release, says: "We believe that SwiftNet Phase 2, RMA and the HSM boxes will provide us with 'state of the art' messaging infrastructure in terms of security, and relationship management."
Michel Mignolet, IT specialist Swift front ends, Fortis, says the bank already uses SwiftAlliance Access and Gateway for bulk payments processing and cash reporting. During pilot-testing, he has been impressed by advances made with SwiftAlliance Messenger, the desktop interface for manual message processing: "The advantage of Messenger is that it will allow us to ramp up our use of newer solutions that we are considering — like Exceptions and Investigations — in line with the needs of our business."
Swift says that 12 early adopters - ten banks and two corporates - have now joined with the initial five pilot banks, in committing to introduce the new Exceptions and Investigations service by Q1 2007.
The Brussels-based co-operative says current bank adoption of the solution - which is designed to automate up to 60% of payments-related enquiries - already represents more than 20% of the industry’s exceptions volumes. The system will be live from September 2006.
In a separate straight-through processing initiative, Swift has turned its attention to the post-trade OTC automation struggle, and entered into an agreement with the International Swaps and derivatives Association (Isda) to support FpML messaging services over SwiftNet.
The two organisations have agreed to create a Swift Closed User Group, which is expected to transport FpML messages before the end of 2006.