Stephen Grainger is head of market infrastructures & experts, Americas & UK region at SWIFT.
What were the major themes of your business in 2015?
All companies need to continue to evolve their business models in order to maintain their relevance and position in the market, and SWIFT is no exception. However, in our case, we continue to provide value to the industry through the ongoing delivery of our core objective of ensuring resilient performance and operational excellence in the provision of our core messaging services.
During 2015, we continued to build on and develop our ability to serve our clients in new ways, such as through the provision of enhanced interface and integration products – like the Advanced Messaging Hub – and Financial Crime Compliance services. At the same time, we have diversified our relationships with Market Infrastructures to provide new services, such as real-time payments capabilities in Australia, while consolidating our position in some of our core competencies: we are the market-leading provider of messaging services across the T2S ecosystem.
What are your expectations for 2016?
Innovation will continue to be key to both our business and to that of our clients. Much has been made of the growing influence of FinTech and the new kid on the block, Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT). Like many other firms, SWIFT will be fully engaged in working to understand what this technology can offer and how we take advantage of it – providing the right use cases can be identified – to yield benefit for our community.
Of course, FinTech isn’t the only driver of innovation. SWIFT is committed to working with our members to help address some of the established challenges they continue to face by deploying the expertise we have developed over many years, particularly in the development and application of standards. The recently-announced global payments industry initiative is a prime example of this, more an application of disruptive thinking than disruptive technology!