ACI Worldwide and VocaLink partner for real-time payments


Digital payments giant ACI Worldwide is teaming up with VocaLink for real-time payments infrastructure.

The companies plant to work together to offer an immediate payments network for both international and domestic payments.

The deal will see VocaLink’s Immediate Payments Gateway and ACI’s UP Immediate Payments tool integrating to offer financial institutions and other players in the payments space access to the scheme.

Back in July, MasterCard announced its (long rumoured) plans to buy Vocalink for £700m ($920m.

VocaLink (formed from a merger of two separate pay tech companies Voca and Link nearly 10 years ago) is owned by a group of banks including the UK “big four” (Barclays, RBS, Lloyds and HSBC) as well as Santander.

The consortium was told by the PSR in February to sell their stakes to boost competition and drive a more open payments industry.

For a refresher, Vocalink operates payment tech platforms that most of us touch every day in the shape of BACS, Faster Payments and LINK, as well as mobile payments service ZAPP. The firm also licensed its Fast ACH tech in countries like Sweden, Singapore and the US. The firm reportedly made £182m in revenues across 11bn transactions in 2015.

BACS – the Automated Clearing House (ACH) enabling direct credit and direct debit payments between bank accounts
Faster Payments – the real-time account-to-account service enabling payments via mobile, internet and telephone
LINK – the UK ATM network

For a deeper dive and an explainer on what all that means, check out our recent podcast with Tom Hays, head of payments at Icon Solutions.

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