Initially limited to modest value consumer payments the UK’s Faster Payments Service (FPS) initiated its Direct Corporate Access (DCA) on 22 July this year enabling bulk payments of transactions of up to £10,000 ($16,400) to be processed in near real time.
The honour of submitting the first DCA transaction went to UK payments software developer Albany Software on behalf of Eagle Consulting, a firm which provides outsourced accounting, treasury, payroll and taxation services to customers such as Holiday Inn Hotels and Shell.
Commenting on the DCA service, Harry Hornby, a director of Eagle Consulting, said: “Whether we are processing routine payroll payments or completing an emergency payments submission for a client suffering a systems failure we now possess an inexpensive same-day payment solution for business.”
The DCA is available for file submission between 6am and 2pm, Monday to Friday. This is unlike the other FBS offerings which are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
The transaction was made in conjunction with Barclays, the first bank to initiate a full roll-out of the DCA service, via Albany’s epay payments gateway solution.
Albany sales and marketing director Georgia Leybourne told EPI that epay is an “intelligent processing engine” which analyses payments data flow and then generates recommended optimum payment methods.
In March 2009, epay became the first FPS Secure-IP (internet-based) software product to achieve BACS Approved Software Service status.
Approval includes testing by payments processor VocaLink on behalf of Bacs, the UK’s direct credit and direct debit payments processor and input from payments industry body APACS and CHAPS Clearing Company, operator of the UK’s real-time gross settlements system. epay is also capable of supporting Single Euro Payment Area payments.
Launched in May least year, APACS reported that some 180 million payments with a total value of just under £70 billion were made during epay’s first year of operation.