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Mastercard Send to launch real-time payments in the UK

Mastercard says it will launch Mastercard Send in the UK. Mastercard Send is a payment service that allows financial institutions, FinTechs, digital customers and other businesses to send real-time payments to UK bank accounts and also to receive payments by the same means.

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Mastercard Send to launch real-time payments in the UK

The service will connect to the Faster Payments network enabling a variety of use cases such as peer-to-peer (P2P) payments and business-to-consumer (B2C) disbursements.

The new service follows Mastercard’s purchase of Vocalink in 2017, and embodies its vision of a world, not only beyond cash, but beyond cards as well.  This will enable a broad range of payment types including the latest generation of real-time account-based payments, while maintaining an unerring focus on delivering the best possible customer experiences. By integrating Vocalink technology, Mastercard Send will provide an unparalleled payment solution that offers greater choice and convenience to its customers, starting in the UK.

Mastercard has chosen Starling Bank as its strategic partner for settlement services in the UK. Starling manages the funds that are to be disbursed before they are pushed to individual accounts via Faster Payments.

Julian Sawyer, chief operating officer of Starling Bank, a leading challenger bank, said:  “Starling Bank is the only provider of real-time access to faster payments in the UK. This partnership will open up new commercial and business opportunities for Mastercard clients as it enables them to make and receive payments instantly.”

The first UK customer for the service will be Income Group, a payroll-focused payment provider that enables businesses to significantly improve the efficiency and reduce the costs associated with running a payroll by reducing the time taken to pay employees down from days to real-time.

“Mastercard Send will make payments much easier for users, and deliver better value to a diverse range of banks and businesses who regularly make disbursements. Existing direct-to-bank-account solutions – even those using Faster Payments – are often batch-based and hence less timely, giving businesses a real headache when it comes to disbursement of funds,” said Mark Barnett, divisional president of Mastercard in the UK.

Income Group is a perfect example of an innovative new business that is looking to bring the benefits of real-time payments to a wide range of businesses and their employees. Income Group has developed a real-time payroll payment process that enables businesses to send their payroll payments ‘just in time’ rather than several days in advance, providing significant working capital benefits to these businesses.

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