Challenger bank Unity Trust Bank has completed the large-scale transfer of its clearing services to NatWest following a competitive tender process.
Formerly with The Co-operative Bank, which announced its exit from the agency banking market in January 2014, Unity sought a provider that could offer a like for like service that meant minimal disruption for its customers.
Payment services including online payments, direct debits, standing orders, cheques, counter services and bullion will be delivered by NatWest. The change affected over 20,000 customer accounts.
The successful migration of all services was led by Unity’s Head of Customer Operations Richard Rose. He said: “Our priority throughout the migration process was to ensure a smooth transition with minimal adverse consequences for our customers. We wanted to provide continuity of as many services as possible and NatWest has been really flexible in its approach with us. The move paves the way for a long term relationship with NatWest and will provide Unity and our customers with a wide range of additional services that may be of benefit in the future.”
The move to NatWest means Unity customers, which include organisations and businesses that are creating community, economic, social or environmental benefit, can take advantage of improved banking and payment services functionality as well as increased counter services across the branch-network of NatWest, and its sister banks Royal Bank of Scotland and Ulster Bank.
Duncan Todd, Director, Financial Institutions UK at NatWest, said: “I am absolutely delighted at the opportunity for NatWest to develop a long term relationship with Unity Trust Bank as their new banking partner. The project has been one of the largest and most complex Agency Bank implementations we have seen for many years at NatWest. It is a great credit to the numerous individuals from both sides that the project was delivered so efficiently and successfully. This new Agency Banking partnership affords an opportunity for Unity and NatWest to work together more closely in numerous ways, for the benefit of existing and future clients and we look forward to supporting Unity with its future strategy.”
While NatWest is running around 90% of Unity’s original services, the bank has also taken the opportunity to negotiate more suitable arrangements with other providers for a number of services. Its MasterCard branded Corporate MultiPay card is contracted to Lloyds and Santander is delivering its pay direct service through the Post Office.