System analysis for North American payments operator
In the spring of 2018 we provided a central payments operator in North America with a report concerning the use of data in payment systems around the world. The operator is in the process of modernizing many of its payment systems for bulk and high-value payments. Part of this overhaul involved understanding how payments data is used in other systems around the world. We studied how data is collated, delivered, and used by central payment infrastructures in seven different systems. We leveraged our own expertise, conducted technical research, and interviewed several insiders from each system.
The report looked at how central infrastructures use data and aggregate data for internal purposes (fraud, liquidity, and capacity management) and external purposes (accessibility, customized services). This included an examination of messaging standards, network delivery, and the information that can be extracted.
We also looked at the strengths and weaknesses of each system, the contextual reasons as to why central infrastructures might offer more or less data related services, and developed a list of options for the operator. We focused on how data and aggregated data could be used to lower barriers to entry for TPPs and smaller financial institutions. We also examined how central infrastructures are leveraging data to improve their systems and offerings, while remaining compliant with data privacy regulations.
Our work provided critical input for the roadmap to modernization.
Support in payment diversification strategy
In recognition of the changes in the global payments landscape, as well as strategic moves from competitors, Lipis Advisors was engaged to help the client develop a payment diversification strategy to extend its payment processing capabilities to real-time payments. The project broadly consisted of four aspects: capability gap analysis, partner identification, evaluation, and selection.
We started the engagement by performing a gap analysis where we assessed the client’s existing payment processing capabilities. In doing so, we were able to identify not only current deficiencies, but capabilities and assets to be leveraged in the real-time payments world. Having defined the gap, we had a good idea of what to look for in a potential strategic partner. We identified a long-list of more than 10 companies, mainly consisting of payment processors and payment technology vendors. We then developed an assessment framework that was applied to the companies identified, and evaluated each partner in terms of their technological capabilities, reference cases, reputation, company strength, strategic and cultural alignment with our client, and more. Having narrowed down the long-list to a shortlist, we facilitated introductions and workshops between our client and the partners. The engagement was finalized once we had successfully selected a strategic partner with which our client wanted to move forward.
Our work helped this client stay competitive in their field by diversifying their payment strategy to include real-time payments capability.
Digitization support for the Afghan Credit Guarantee Foundation
The goal of the project was to identify fintech solutions to foster SME lending in Afghanistan and find potential fintech providers for ACGF’s partner institutions such as banks and microfinance institutions. The project broadly consisted of two main aspects: research and analysis on the needs of Afghan SME lending market and identification of suitable fintech solutions and the providers.
We conducted extensive research and multiple executive interviews with Afghan stakeholders and fintech providers. Based on the collected information, we developed comparative frameworks to map fintech solutions to market needs. In the assignment, we identified key market needs of credit scoring, data quality, mobile banking, financial education/literacy, and core banking digitalization. We then selected the most promising fintech providers out of 60 candidates and framed potential projects for ACGF using their fintech solutions.
Our proposal also included the role of ACGF in implementing these projects and the strategy of positioning themselves as the center of influence in the Afghan financial sector.
The ACGF project created a practical roadmap for banking inclusion and financial literacy in one of the most underdeveloped countries in the world.
EBA Summer/Winter Schools
We chair the faculty and lead the delivery of the Euro Banking Associations’ Summer and Winter Schools.
The biannual programs are attended by payments professionals seeking new insights into key business, technology and regulatory developments impacting the European payments industry.
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