Corporates queuing up to join Swift says HSBC

Corporates queuing up to join Swift says HSBC

HSBC is forecasting a sharp increase in corporate membership of Swift after releasing research which shows business enthusiasm for the new open access model gaining ground.

Of 121 corporates surveyed, 65% said they were considering Swift corporate access - a significant increase from just over half of corporates surveyed two years ago during the MA-CUG roll-out.

Thirty nine per cent of corporates said they were actively considering it in the next 12 months (up from a third in 2004), increasing to 46% of those with annual revenue of over US$10 billion.

Perhaps most telling, suggests HSBC, is the jump in those seeing Swift corporate access as relevant to their business. In 2004, 36% of corporates said the service was not applicable to their business. Since the launch of Swift’s new corporate access model, however, this has fallen to 22%.

Marcus Treacher, HSBC’s head of ecommerce, global transaction banking, comments: "Our research shows that not only is there an increase in awareness of the benefits of Swift corporate access, but it’s clear that corporates also recognise the advantages of the new model."

These advantages, he says, include:

  • access to the entire Swift network without the need for a closed user group to be set up;
  • a simpler and faster procedure for getting onto Swift; and
  • straightforward evaluation of corporate eligibility makes it easier to determine who makes the grade.

"The impact of this new arrangement is subtle but far reaching," says Treacher. "The immediate result should be a sharp increase in the number of corporates who opt to join Swift over the next 18 months, with bureau services seeing a strong pick-up in usage."

He says the bank has modified its systems to operate with the new model and is rapidly building expertise in the area.

The research is released as IBM confirms its intention to link its corporate treasury operations and payments functions with its banks via SwiftNet (See SibosOnline, Tuesday: IBM to join Swift as new corporate participant; Microsoft specs out SwiftNet project).

The computer company forecasts multi-million dollar savings in its treasury operations by using its newly-announced Enterprise Payments Platform to integrate SwiftNet with the company's internal systems, leading to lower transaction costs and increased visibility of transactional data.

Marilyn Spearing, chair of the Swift corporate access group, welcomed IBM's announcement. "This further confirms the attractiveness of the SwiftNet offering for corporates and will create addittional traction in the corporate community," she says.

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