A global instant payments infrastructure is coming

Tom Greenwood: ‘A global instant payments infrastructure is coming, and we’re building it’

Before long, account-based instant payments will dominate the global payments landscape. They’ll become the new normal. Card payments – for so long the backbone of e-commerce – will see a gradual, but permanent decline.

While it might take a few years – your friends will wax lyrical about instant account-to-account payments. They represent the future, as businesses embrace a new more digital way of working.

Don’t take my word for it. FIS, one of the world’s largest payments processing firms, expects account-based instant payments to be its primary revenue stream by 2024.

The benefits are obvious. Merchants receive funds in real-time, rather than having to wait for days. Consumers, aside from not having to keep cards to hand, can quickly and securely action direct payments from their bank accounts.

Investors recognise and believe in these benefits. In June, Volt raised a $23.5 million Series A funding round. Led by EQT Ventures, it’s the largest Series A in the European open banking space to date.

This sends two clear signals: firstly, that the halcyon days of plastic payments are ending. Card payments are slow and expensive for merchants and clunky for customers. Designed in the 1950’s and 60’s, now unable to keep up with the pace of technological and societal change.

Secondly, that we’re really on to something at Volt. There are a lot of players in the open banking space, but investors understand that it’s us who are building the global real-time infrastructure for payments. A record-breaking Series A is testament to that.

Our expansion plans extend beyond the borders of Europe and the open banking opportunity in this market. We are launching in LATAM connecting Brazil’s equivalent account-based instant payment service PIX, and will be expanding into the Americas and APAC in the months ahead.

As it stands, the emerging real-time payments infrastructure is domestic and disparate, geographically and technologically fragmented, but global. We’ve translated and productised new-generation instant payment systems to a simple, single point of access, creating a highly flexible, scalable solution for a market that by 2025, will be worth $149 billion.

Aside from offering unrivalled open payments reach, this model will dramatically improve the speed, security and resilience of transactions for merchants and payment service providers around the world. And we’re just getting started.

About Tom Greenwood

Tom Greenwood is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Volt. A renowned expert on PSD2 open banking, he was formerly the co-founder and chief operating officer at IFX Payments.

Our expansion plans extend beyond the borders of Europe and the open banking opportunity in this market. We are launching in LATAM connecting Brazil’s equivalent account-based instant payment service PIX, and will be expanding into the Americas and APAC in the months ahead.