June roundup: Advances in digital platforms

June saw the merger of Misys and D+H to form Finastra, as well as multiple advances in the use and capabilities of ubiquitous payments and trade platforms.

Midway through the month, on June 14, Misys and D+H merged to form a new company called Finastra. The merger makes them the third-largest financial services technology company in the world, boasting 10,000 employees and over 9,000 customers across 130 countries. The merger follows the acquisition of D+H by Vista Equity Partners, which already owned Misys. The new company will offer retail banking, transaction banking, lending, and treasury and capital markets software capabilities.

Shortly after the merger, several institutions announced they were working with the newly formed fintech giant. Rabobank selected Finastra to centralize their cross-border payments; SIA, a European provider of payment infrastructure and services, partnered with Finastra to provide real-time instant payments capabilities; and Mexico’s central bank, Banco de Mexico, also selected Finastra to transform its legacy risk management platform.

On June 27, Swift announced that HSBC successfully went live with FIXML and ISO 20022 traffic on Swift for domestic clearing and settlement on the Singapore exchange, enabling the bank to use a single channel for domestic and cross-border messaging. HSBC is the first bank to send FIXML messages via Swift for clearing purposes.

On June 5, Bank of China announced it will be joining the EBS Direct platform as a liquidity provider, offering increased liquidity and improved pricing to clients on the platform, particularly to those trading in offshore Chinese renminbi.

On June 21 Hong Kong Digital Assets Exchange launched a new platform to support the trade of virtual digital assets.

In the world of relentless blockchain development, the Singapore Diamond Investment Exchange announced on June 15 it was partnering with Kynetix and Everledger to trial the first-ever blockchain verification and record-keeping service for diamond trading.

IBM also announced on June 27 it had been selected by a consortium of seven of Europe’s largest banks to build and host a new trade finance platform, called The Digital Trade Chain. The platform is designed to simplify and facilitate domestic and cross-border trade for small and medium enterprises in Europe. The consortium consists of Deutsche Bank, HSBC, KBC, Natixis, Rabobank, Societe Generale, and Unicredit.

And finally, June is also a special month, as this month marks the ATM’s 50th birthday. A survey conducted by YouGov for ACI Universal Payments to mark the event claims that users want ATMs to be upgraded to be easier, more intuitive, and provide better account information.