FIS enables real-time payments for Singapore's Trust Bank

FIS enables real-time payments for Singapore’s Trust Bank.Source – Shutterstock

FIS enables real-time payments for Singapore’s Trust Bank

  • Trust Bank, Singapore’s First Digitally-Native Bank, will utilize the FIS Open Payments Framework (OPF), an ISO 20022-native real-time payments platform.
  • Following its launch in September 2022, Trust’s customer base has scaled rapidly to more than 400,000 customers with over six million transactions during 2022.

As we get deeper into the era of instancy, more organizations, including Singapore’s First Digitally-Native Bank, Trust Bank, understand the business case for real-time payment and how it adds value to their businesses. Having seen its customer base grow to more than 400,000 with over six million transactions in just four months from when the digital bank was launched on September 1, 2022, Trust Bank decided to up its ante with a partnership with global financial technology provider FIS.

In a statement to the media, Trust Bank stated that it would utilize FIS Open Payments Framework (OPF) – an ISO 20022-native real-time payments platform to facilitate payment transactions for the bank, including traditional and instant or real-time payments. “This cloud-native solution will allow Trust to scale payments volumes as the bank continues to grow its business,” the statement reads.

For context, Trust Bank, a banking venture between Standard Chartered Bank and FairPrice Group, was born in the cloud and supported Singapore’s ambitions to strengthen its financial sector for the future digital economy. The digital native bank was launched with a range of products for its customers, comprising a credit card, savings account, and family personal accident insurance. Its credit card has unique features, including the option for customers to set their preferred repayment dates and being numberless. 

“The FIS solution will help us to process payments in a scalable way and creates a seamless digital experience for our customers’ everyday banking activities,” said Tarun Punjabi, the product lead at Trust Bank. In a sector traditionally controlled by lenders led by DBS Group Holdings Ltd, the country’s largest, Singapore has been witnessing intense competition with Jack Ma’s Ant Group Co. and Grab Holdings Ltd venturing into the digital banking space. 

For Standard Chartered, backed by state investor Temasek Holdings Pte, Trust Bank is its second digital bank in Asia, following the launch of Mox in Hong Kong in 2020. According to Trust Bank’s Chief Executive Officer Dwaipayan Sadhu, the Fairprice Group engages with some one million clients daily through its various outlets. The supermarket group has a network of close to 570 touchpoints, including groceries and meal offerings. “We should be able to tap into that ecosystem,” Sadhu said at a briefing last year.

One of the few market-first innovations Trust Bank introduced in Singapore is a Trust credit card- the country’s first numberless credit card. It enables customers to choose their repayment date and eliminates many fees. “The Trust card is also the first to offer dual functionality as a credit and debit card, removing the need for users to carry multiple cards. The company said in a statement that these innovative features were driven by extensive user feedback during the roll-out phase,” the company said in a statement. 

Looking into the Asian digital banking space is being driven mainly by established companies and consortia. Despite structural challenges concerning governance, consortia bring significant advantages in achieving scale. Just five years after its launch, Tencent-backed WeBank serves some 200 million people, and Alibaba-supported MYbank has more than 20 million SME customers as of 2021. 

Over a short period, China’s digital banks now have roughly 5% share of the country’s RMB 5 trillion unsecured consumer loan market and more than 7% of online SME loans. South Korea’s KakaoBank, launched in 2017, attracted more than 10 million customers in its first year and now has a roughly 5% share of the country’s unsecured consumer loan market.