Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) has been appointed as the technology provider for South Africa’s payments platform build for the Rapid Payments Programme (RPP). By joining forces with TCS, BankservAfrica will evolve payments for the hyperconnected digital economy in South Africa and beyond.
“Following our rigorous selection process, TCS emerged as the natural fit, matching our key criteria for affordability, fit-for-purpose and ability to deliver. In addition to having the best technology stack, they have had major success for innovating in India’s payments ecosystem and will no doubt support us in bringing some of this experience to South Africa. This comes at a time where economic recovery is critical and the industry needs to catch up to the digital changes in the economy,” says Jan Pilbauer, BankservAfrica’s CEO. “With TCS’s technology, we are well-positioned to expedite the launch of a modern, easy to use and efficient payments platform that caters for lower value transactions at an affordable cost for the benefit of all South Africans.”
RPP meets the requirements of the Payments Association of South Africa’s (PASA) vision for the national payments system of the future. BankservAfrica embarked on a journey to introduce the next generation payments system for the growing payments ecosystem of banks and non-banks. Its three features of an instant way to pay and use funds, easier addressability of payments by using a simple identifier like a mobile number as a proxy, and the ability to send a request-to-pay, will make it possible for South Africans to do a transfer of value as effortlessly as sending a text message. Small businesses and spaza shops, for example, will be able to request immediate payment and receive money securely and immediately on their mobile phone and rely less on the current predominant cash transactions.
The Build Phase for the new payments platform has kicked off and the selection of TCS marks an important step on the journey. RPP will be brought to the market in phases, involving robust testing, feedback from the industry, and a go to market strategy. It is anticipated that the platform should be available for testing by the participants in the second half of 2021.
“TCS BaNCS has seen wide adoption and success in the South African financial services industry, with the country’s top eight financial institutions and the South African Depository running on our solutions,” said R Vivekanand, Co-Head, TCS Financial Solutions. “As BankservAfrica looks to set new standards for real-time payments and financial inclusion in South Africa, TCS BaNCS will help create a modern, high-performance, open central payments infrastructure. We are happy to be a partner in this exciting purpose-led transformation and are committed to delivering innovative solutions leveraging TCS BaNCS and Quartz in the country.”
RPP offers an intuitive, instant and affordable way to pay to South Africa’s financial institutions, payment service providers, business community, governments and consumers. It will be built by leveraging the most modern technology, including microservices and APIs to offer flexibility, agility and a seamless payments experience at a low cost while generating rich data to enhance payments convenience.