Europe


Swansea Building Society upgrades Sopra savings system

Swansea Building Society has just upgraded its lending and saving platform to the latest version of vendor Sopra Banking Software’s mortgage and savings suite – a move that it says will help it to handle its regulatory reporting obligations much more effectively and launch new products quicker when needed.

Orange and Visa team up on NFC payments in France

French operator group Orange has formed a strategic partnership with payment provider Visa to accelerate awareness and everyday usage of contactless payment technology in France. The operator has also launched a mobile prepayment solution called Orange Cash in the country.

Deutsche Bank appoints Boeing’s Kim Hammonds as CIO

Deutsche Bank has chosen Kim Hammonds as chief information officer and global co-head of group technology and operations. Hammonds joins on 25 November from Boeing, where she was chief information officer.

SIA’s Andrea Galeazzi takes up chairmanship at Emmecom

Andrea Galeazzi, director of network services at Italian payments and technology infrastructure company SIA, has taken up a new role as chairman at Italian telecoms firm Emmecom. The move is part of SIA’s acquisition of the smaller firm, which took place in July and forms a key part of its European expansion plans.

Furness Building Society installs core banking platform

Furness Building Society has chosen a mortgage and savings suite from vendor Sopra Banking Software, to act as the society’s core banking platform. The new system is intended to help the society become more flexible and develop new products, especially online products.

Moscow Exchange debuts cleared OTC derivatives market

Moscow Exchange has opened its new cleared OTC derivatives market, marking a major step towards Russia’s G20 commitments. But some observers still have doubts about Russia’s reputation as an investment destination.

Consumers don’t trust mobile payments study finds

Fewer than one in four of UK consumers would use their smartphone like a credit card to make payments even if they had the relevant app, according to a new survey carried out by YouGov on behalf of outsourcing firm Firstsource Solutions.

Russian telco links Europe to Asia with high-speed fibre

Russian telecoms carrier MegaFon has announced the commercial launch of an 8,700 kilometre long terrestrial fibre optic trunk connecting Europe and Asia. The DREAM  – Diverse Route for European and Asian Markets – link extends from Frankfurt-am-Main to the Kazakhstan-China border, through Kazakhstan, Russia, Ukraine, Slovakia, Austria, Germany, and was created by MegaFon in cooperation […]

EuroCCP and EMCF merger receives OFT approval

Pan-European clearing houses EMCF and EuroCCP have received approval from the UK consumer authority the Office of Fair Trading to go ahead with their planned merger, announced in July.

UK Payments Council reports 11% increase in account switching

The number of UK consumers who switched their current account during the last month increased by 11% compared to the same period last year, giving hope to the UK Payments Council that its new seven-day account switching service which launched on 16 September may be beginning to work.

Banco Itaú Suisse installs ERI private banking platform

Banco Itaú Suisse, the Swiss business of Latin American bank Itaú Unibanco, has chosen a private banking business system from software vendor ERI as part of a drive to make the Swiss unit a central hub for the Group’s European private banking business.

UK account switching a “complete waste of time” claims bank panellist

The UK Payments Council’s seven-day account switching service has been attacked as a “complete waste of time” by participants at a panel discussion in London on Wednesday – an allegation that was vigorously denied by representatives of the Council and the UK retail banking sector.

Squawker completes European launch

Sell-side only block trading network Squawker has completed its pan-European rollout, connecting 70 sell-side firms to the new venue, which promises ‘algorithm-free’ trading in 13 European countries.

Mobile payments success needs complete ecosystem

The public is ready to adopt mobile payments in many aspects of their lives, but service providers need to have a defined role in the ecosystem and an understanding of how they interact with other players and the consumer.

Financial institutions are “missing out” on big data says TeleWare

As financial regulation on mobile phone recording grows ever tighter in Europe, a significant proportion of financial institutions still haven’t put in place any technology to handle it. They could be missing out, according to Steve Haworth, chief executive at computer telephony specialist TeleWare.

London Stock Exchange prepares millimetre wave trading link

The London Stock Exchange is planning to roll out a new millimetre wave wireless communication link between its data centre in the City of London and the Equinix data centre in Slough, in a deal that will provide faster access and benefit HFT firms looking to arbitrage between multiple trading venues.

Zapp: putting banks back in the m-payments picture

Formed earlier this year, Zapp expects to launch next year with the backing of most of the major UK retail banks, Peter Keenan, chief executive of the venture, says that at the time of launch the Pay by Zapp service will be available to 40% of UK current account holders, and it will have the backing of 50% of the nation’s online and mobile retailers – including well-known brands.

US-Europe derivatives rulemaking deal “falls at first hurdle”

Senior financial industry executives have expressed disappointment at the failure of the US and European securities regulators to realise a deal over derivatives reforms and swap execution facilities, the new category of US execution venues brought in under the Dodd-Frank Act.

FIS sets sights on eastern Europe with new cloud banking platform

US banking and payments technology specialist FIS has launched a cloud-based real time core banking utility aimed at mid-tier banks in central and eastern Europe, which it says will help client to roll out new products faster and cheaper than ever before.

Cloud makes inroads into UK mid-tier as Leeds Building Society joins HP alliance

Leeds Building Society has joined the shared services alliance founded by HP Enterprise Services and the Yorkshire Building Society in September, in a deal that will see the society move its core application for mortgages and savings to the cloud. The deal also marks a growing recognition among the UK’s mid-tier institutions of the power of cloud to help them move with the times.

“Problematic” US shutdown causes SEF blues at the EU

The European Commission has expressed concerns that the US government shutdown is preventing a deal between the EU and US regulator, just as new swaps rules come into force for firms based both inside and outside the US.

Intelligent changes to lending: winning back consumers’ hearts

Following yet another revelation that UK banks have been mis-selling financial products to their customers, this time for identity theft and credit card protection insurance, the need for high street lenders to prove that they are changing their lending behaviour has never been so great.

LSE launches new derivatives market

The London Stock Exchange has intensified its push into the derivatives markets with the launch of a new bourse called LSE Derivatives Market, which it says will create new opportunities for traders in London and provide a better proposition under the EU’s EMIR legislation than its predecessor Turquoise Derivatives.