Fintech · Payments · Press Releases
LHV becomes the first bank to provide fintechs with access to instant pound and euro payments
LHV, the fintech focused bank and payment services provider, is pleased to announce that it has commenced providing real-time pound payments via the UK’s Faster Payments scheme. As a result, LHV has become the first bank capable of providing real time euro payments via Single Euro Payment Area Instant (‘SEPA Instant’) and processing pound (‘Faster Payments’) payments, giving it a unique competitive advantage and cementing its position as a leading services provider to the global fintech sector.
The pound payments service has been operational since May 2019. However, Pay UK, an organisation operating the pound payments in the UK, delayed the launch due to the requirement for further clarification on various legal questions which arose in relation to Brexit and the future separation from the current common legal framework that Estonia shares with the UK. To ensure compliance in the post-Brexit environment, the Estonian Credit Institutions Act was changed, enabling LHV to launch the pound payment service, which is now available to its clients.
In addition to real-time pound and euro payments, LHV’s clients also have access, via the bank’s API LHV Connect interface, to safeguarding accounts, Virtual IBANs, currency exchange, liquidity services and possible financing.
Andres Kitter, Head of LHV’s UK branch, commented, “From today, Faster Payments is available to our clients and this marks the official beginning of our business in the UK. We have been working towards this moment ever since we expanded to London in early 2018. LHV has thrived in the capital over the past two years – reaching profitability in our first year and tripling our client base to well over 100 fintech clients today.
“We are the preferred banking infrastructure provider to companies of all sizes, ranging from small pre-revenue start-ups to unicorns with global reach such as TransferWise, Coinbase, Paysafe and Trustly.
Continuous development of services for our fintech clients is key to our success and we will continue to respond to market demands promptly by developing bespoke value add solutions, both proactively and reactively.
“Despite the UK’s upcoming exit from the EU, we are confident that London shall maintain its position as a fintech capital of Europe. LHV is in it for the long haul, with plans in place to continue our growth in the upcoming years, providing the best possible services to our fintech clients.”
Available 24/7 throughout the year, including during bank holidays, Faster Payments Domestic instant payment network enables near-real time pound payments up to a value of £250,000 per payment. Faster Payments is a UK banking initiative set up with the aim of reducing payment times between different banks’ customer accounts from the standard three working days associated with the long-established Bacs system to a few seconds.
Faster Payments is directed towards fintechs and financial intermediaries, enabling them to use real-time pound and instant euro payments by just one easy integration with the LHV Connect API. Using the platform, fintechs can make domestic payments in both the UK as well as in the euro area and they can get an overview of their accounts in real time.
Notes on LHV
LHV is a preferred banking partner amongst fintechs. The Company established a presence in London in 2018 to expand its existing business line of servicing financial intermediaries. It chose London given its status as the undisputed capital of fintech in Europe.
LHV offers several innovative financial services to its clients, including Virtual International Bank Account Numbers (‘IBAN’), Single Euro Payment Area (‘SEPA’) Payments and Faster Payments, enabling real-time Euro and Sterling payments to financial intermediaries.
The bank views fintechs as allies – not competition. It even integrated some of the services offered by the start-ups to its online banking, enhancing the offering to its own retail clients. LHV is extremely agile and ready to embrace change; notably, the board views the bank more as a technology company than a financial institution.
Most of LHV’s clients fall under the following categories: money remittance, neobanks/challenger banks, fx broker/remittance and cryptocurrency players.
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