Asia Pacific

Rise of fintech heralds Singapore payments revamp

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has released a consultation paper on proposed changes to the payments regulatory framework and establishment of a National Payments Council. Jacqueline Loh, MAS deputy managing director, says this is an “important step for MAS and the payments industry to co-create the future of Singapore’s payments landscape; one where payments […]

Innovation through the Looking Glass for Singapore

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has opened its purpose-built fintech innovation lab – known as Looking Glass @ MAS. MAS says the lab will allow it to experiment with financial institutions, start-ups, and technology vendors. In addition, Looking Glass @ MAS will help consultations between start-ups and industry experts in areas such as legal […]

Hitachi and BTMU cheque mates for blockchain digitalisation

Hitachi and the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ (BTMU) have started proof of concept (PoC) testing for using blockchain in the digitalisation of cheques in Singapore. In this PoC testing, Hitachi and BTMU developed a system in which a blockchain infrastructure is used for issuing, transferring and collecting electronic cheques. BTMU issues and settles them, while […]

Ripple blockchain powers payments for Japanese bank consortium

SBI Ripple Asia has announced that a Japanese consortium of 15 banks in a new network will use Ripple’s blockchain technology for payments and settlement. Using Ripple, customers of the banks will get real-time domestic and cross-border payments, 365 days of the year. Initial participants include Bank of Yokohama and SBI Sumishin Net Bank (SBI […]

Philippines Land Bank goes live on Miles Software’s MoneyWare Custody

Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) has gone live with Miles Software’s MoneyWare Custody solution. The government-owned bank was recently accredited by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (central bank) to offer third party security custody and registry services. The new deal is part of its growth plans. Josephine Cervero, senior vice-president and trust officer, LBP, […]

SK Telecom and Hana Financial team for mobile platform launch

South Korea’s SK Telecom and Hana Financial Group have formed a joint venture (JV) agreement to develop and launch a mobile financial services platform. The firms say the deal combines SK Telecom’s mobile technologies and big data analytics with Hana Financial Group’s experience in financial products and mobile financial services. Kim Jung-tae, chairman of Hana […]

Chinese tourism inspires Ingenico and Alipay payment partnership

Payments provider Ingenico has partnered with Alipay to give Chinese tourists visiting Europe the ability to pay via their Alipay app at any store using the Ingenico solution. With this partnership, Alipay will be imbedded into Ingenico’s in-store payment gateway, which will allow acquirers across Europe to integrate and offer Alipay acceptance to their merchants. […]

Payments round-up: 12 August 2016

It’s probably not farfetched to say you’re time-stretched. To save time here’s a round-up of some events in the (Asian) world of payments. Payments firm Mozido has revealed that 14 banks within the Taiwan Mobile Payment Co (TWMP) consortium have adopted its HCE technology. The remaining 12 banks will launch later this year. Mozido says […]

Fexco and Encash partner for Philippines “first-ever” mobile cash withdrawal

Ireland-based Fexco has teamed with Electronic Network Cash Tellers (Encash) to launch the “first-ever” mobile cash withdrawal solution in the Philippines. Through Encash’s customer network, Fexco says its EasyDebit solution will be able to serve 75 million BancNet cardholders, allowing them “easier access” to cash across the Philippines. Fexco says the Philippines is a cash-centric […]

Thieves steal $72m from Hong Kong Bitcoin exchange

It’s all gone wrong in Hong Kong as about $72 million worth of Bitcoin was stolen from the Bitfinex exchange platform. Nearly 120,000 units have been pilfered making it the second-biggest security breach ever of such an exchange. Bitfinex is one of the largest exchanges for Bitcoin, and according to Reuters is known in the […]

Rizal Commercial Banking Corp fined $21m over cybersecurity failings

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), Philippines’ central bank, has issued a PHP 1 billion ($21 million) fine to Rizal Commercial Banking Corp (RCBC) for cybersecurity failings. RCBC was used by cyber criminals to channel $81 million stolen from Bangladesh’s central bank earlier this year. According to BSP, the fine was “the largest amount it has […]

Singapore start-ups soar with OCBC support

OCBC Bank’s fintech accelerator programme, the Open Vault, will pilot tests with three start-ups – Fincast, BondIT and CogniCor. The tests involve wealth management and artificial intelligence (AI) solutions and will begin in the fourth quarter of this year, and will last for three months. Samuel Tsien, OCBC Bank’s group CEO, says: “Deploying these solutions […]

Bangkok Capital automates front-to-middle office ops with Charles River’s IMS

Specialist vendor Charles River has supplied its flagship Investment Management Solution (IMS) to Bangkok Bank’s subsidiary, Bangkok Capital Asset Management (BCAP). The IMS front-to-middle office system, supplied on a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) basis, has automated BCAP’s investment process, says the vendor, “from portfolio management through trading, compliance, and settlement”. Charles River is also providing its Data […]

DBS heads to cloud with Amazon Web Services

Singapore-based DBS Bank has signed an agreement with Amazon Web Services (AWS) to use its cloud technology. The bank envisages shifting up to 50% of its computer workload to cloud within a two-year period. With this deal, DBS will create a hybrid cloud environment “optimised” for rapid changes of capacity and functionality, which is “complementary” […]

Diasoft scores second win in Vietnam with TPBank

Russia-based banking tech vendor Diasoft has landed its second deal in Vietnam, with TienPhongBank (TPBank). TPBank will implement Diasoft’s loan origination and debt collection solutions, part of a broader Flextera software suite. Diasoft’s first contract in Vietnam (and the vendor’s first in South East Asia) – signed in 2013 – is with Vietnam International Bank […]

China: where the digital payments action is

Earlier this year a couple of surveys were released indicating that the real action in digital payments is in China. This shouldn’t be surprising: China’s economy continues to grow (despite doomsayers predicting a coming “crash” for at least a decade) and the Chinese government is investing billions into science and technology. The fruits of this […]

MasterCard to apply for payment licence in China

MasterCard plans to become a payment service provider in China, according to Reuters. It is still pondering whether to do so alone or with a partner, it is understood. Ann Cairns, president of international markets at MasterCard, told Reuters that China is “pretty crucial” to MasterCard’s future, but the company is still “trying to understand […]

Union Bank of Philippines picks D+H for cash management services

Union Bank of the Philippines has chosen US-based D+H Corporation’s suite of cash management solutions. The bank¸ which provides products and services to more than 7,000 corporate clients, has embarked on a “major transformation” of its cash management services business and wanted to simplify its IT environment. John Ong, head of transaction banking, Union Bank […]

Japan Exchange Group goes live on Nasdaq derivatives trading system

Japan Exchange Group’s (JPX) subsidiary, Osaka Securities Exchange (OSE), has gone live on Nasdaq’s new derivatives trading system. The trading system will provide OSE with “higher performance, longer trading hours and more flexibility” for new products. In addition to the trading system, OSE has also launched Nasdaq’s real-time, cross-market surveillance (Smarts) and pre-trade risk management […]

Softbank to buy mobile chip designer ARM in £24.3 billion IoT bet

Japanese operator group Softbank has successfully bid £24.3 billion to buy UK mobile chip designer ARM in a bid to position itself at the centre of the IoT revolution, reports Scott Bicheno at The bid represents a 43% premium to the ARM share price at close of trading on Friday last week and the […]

IBM to open blockchain innovation centre in Singapore

IBM plans to establish the “first” IBM Center for Blockchain Innovation in Singapore. The firm says this is the first collaboration of its kind with the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB) and the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS). IBM researchers will work with government, industries and academia to develop applications and solutions which are based […]

Two digital-only banks set to launch in South Korea

South Korea’s banking sector is getting a shake up with two digital-only banks applying for regulatory approval in the second half of this year. According to Financial Services Commission (FSC) chairman Yim Jong-yong; K Bank, led by KT Corporation (formerly Korea Telecom), and Kakao Bank, led by internet company Kakao; plan to apply for approval […]

Fintechs be nimble, fintechs be quick, but DBS prefers the cloud trick

DBS Bank says it is the first Singapore bank to adopt cloud-based productivity technology, Office 365, in the workplace. The bank says its “early” adoption of cloud among financial sector players comes amid Singapore’s “smart nation drive as well as a digital revolution that is redefining the banking industry”. DBS says fintech pose an “increasing […]

Singapore banks to pilot Facebook and Twitter IDs for payments

Banks in Singapore are working together on a new service that will allow users to make payments using Twitter usernames or Facebook IDs. According to the FT, a pilot is due to take place in the first quarter of 2017. Rather than entering an account number and sort code, users will be able to make […]

Panin Bank launches digital banking service with Fiserv

Panin Bank, a retail and business bank in Indonesia, has launched new digital banking products and services using Fiserv’s Mobiliti and Corillian Online. Ken Ng, director of retail banking, Panin Bank, says Fiserv has allowed it to develop an “innovative, feature-rich and integrated digital banking service that consumers have come to expect in the modern […]

Android Pay arrives in Singapore

Android Pay has launched in Singapore, making it the first country in Asia to get the system. Pali Bhat, senior director of product management at Google, says Singapore was chosen as the third market worldwide after the US and UK due to the number of mobile phone users and highly developed infrastructure. Android Pay will […]

Taiwan Business Bank expands contract with Wolters Kluwer

Wolters Kluwer’s regulatory reporting platform, OneSumX, will be used by the Chinese branch of Taiwan Business Bank. With the need for enhanced regulatory reporting to the China Banking Regulatory Commission (CBRC), the bank required “scalable solution to meet the new standards”, the vendor says. These include the CBRC’s requirements for Basel III & Foreign Asset […]

Japan raises security after ¥1.8bn taken from ATMs

Japan’s Seven Bank has improved security for ATM withdrawals following Japanese banks losing JPY 1.8 billion ($16.8 million) through fake overseas cards. Banks across the island nation are rushing to deal with the fraud, and Seven Bank which operates ATMs in the 7-Eleven convenience store chain, has cut its withdrawal limit to JPY 50,000 ($468) […]

Visa and MasterCard could get access to $8.4tn Chinese card payment market

China will let foreign payment card firms operate in the country under rules issued on 7 June, according to Reuters. The announcement gives Visa and MasterCard the opportunity to tap into a CNY 55 trillion ($8.4 trillion) card payment market. Both companies have been lobbying for more than ten years for direct access to China’s […]

Swift hacks lead to Philippine central bank cyber security boost

Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, the Philippine central bank, is strengthening its cyber security surveillance in light of the recent Swift hacking saga. Nestor Espenilla, the central bank deputy governor in charge of banking supervision, says it wants to reinforce its defences and is also considering regulating Bitcoin firms due to money laundering issues. This development […]

Chinese choose ICAP for $65m trading platform revamp

China Foreign Exchange Trade System (CFETS), the nation’s official inter-bank market trading platform and infrastructure provider, has chosen ICAP in a $65 million deal. The technology for fixed income and foreign exchange (FX) electronic execution services in mainland China will be delivered by EBS BrokerTec, ICAP’s electronic FX and fixed income business. The deal, valued […]

Wirecard Singapore and NETS team for terminal payment solution

Wirecard Singapore, part of Wirecard Group, and NETS (Network for Electronic Transfers {Singapore}) have partnered to provide a single terminal payment solution for Singapore government agencies. The move will enable users to use their CEPAS (Contactless e-Purse Application) cards such as NETS FlashPay, EZ-Link and concession cards on one single device. Wirecard says CEPAS cards […]

High five for Apple Pay in Singapore

Apple Pay support is expanding beyond American Express to Visa and MasterCard credit and debit cards from five of Singapore’s major banks. The big banks include POSB, DBS, OCBC, Standard Chartered and UOB. This latest deal is a significant development for Apple as it now has more than 80% of the Visa and MasterCard credit […]

Saxo Bank partners with China’s Lufax for trade finance

Saxo Bank has formed a new white label partnership with Lufax, a Chinese internet finance company. The partnership, expected to launch within the next three months, will see Lufax use the trading technology SaxoTraderGO. The bank says SaxoTraderGO will provide Lufax’s clients access across the trade cycle – from pre-trade, execution and post-trade services for […]

MIT on TRAC with OCBC Bank for trade finance

Swiss vendor MIT (Micro-Informatique & Technologies) has signed a contract with OCBC Bank to support its commodity trade finance business with its TRAC (Trade Risk Active Control) system. Maggie Cheong, head of transaction and collateral management, global commodities finance at OCBC, explains the bank’s choice: “We have chosen the TRAC system as it provides the […]

Temenos signs new core banking client in Hong Kong, BMO Asia Pacific

Bank of Montreal Asia Pacific, part of Canada’s BMO Financial Group, will implement Temenos’ flagship core banking system, T24. The bank is based in Hong Kong and focuses on the high-net-worth segment in Hong Kong and Singapore. It has around 1,000 clients. It is understood that the bank went through a selection process prior to […]

Sydney Stock Exchange develops blockchain settlement system

Sydney Stock Exchange (SSX, formerly Asia Pacific Stock Exchange) is building a settlement system based on the distributed ledger technology. Specialist consultancy firm Bit Trade Labs is assisting with the project. To begin with, the new blockchain system will be used to settle trades in private companies, but SSX hopes that once the regulator grants […]

VPBank revamps omnichannel banking with SAP; plans new digital bank

Vietnam’s mid-tier banking player, Vietnam Prosperity Bank (VPBank), has implemented a new digital solution, SAP’s Omnichannel Digital Platform. Omnichannel Digital Platform stems from the Sybase 360 product that came SAP’s way with the acquisition of Sybase in 2010. The new solution was deployed in one year at VPBank, with online and mobile components for retail […]

Bangkok Bank enhances mobile banking ops with Fiserv’s Mobiliti Edge

Bangkok Bank has launched new mobile banking functionality, based on Fiserv’s Mobiliti Edge mobile banking and payments platform. The bank’s mobile solution is known as Bualuang mBanking. It enables Bangkok Bank’s customers to access financial services via a mobile phone, tablet or the Apple Watch. Fiserv and Bangkok Bank have been working together for a […]

Philippines credit union groups sign for Temenos’ software

Two Philippines-based credit union networks, National Confederation of Cooperatives (NATCCO) and Philippine Federation of Credit Cooperatives (PFCCO) will build a common banking and payments platform based on Temenos’ software. The new platform will underpin the service known as the ACCU Payment Platform (APP). ACCU stands for “Asian Confederation of Credit Unions” – both NATCCO and […]

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