Visa Europe migrates to new £432 million high speed payment platform

Visa Europe has fully migrated to a new €500 million (£432 million) high speed payment processing platform.

The new platform can process transactions in around 20 milliseconds, or around 2,500 per second. It is the only inter-bank processing service designed exclusively to meet European requirements, including the Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA), Visa said.

The system  took six years to build and is run by a team of 800 technology and customer services staff across Europe. Visa Europe’s members, some 4,000 banks, own and control the platform.

Visa Europe migrates new high speed payment platform

Visa said its platform was now significantly faster than that used by arch rival Mastercard, which the Financial Times reported runs transactions at 140 milliseconds. Visa did not immediately provide details on the systems its new platform is based on.

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By fully settling transactions on the same day, Visa said it minimised customers’ exposure to currency fluctuations.

Steve Chambers, chief information officer at Visa Europe, said the platform was developed “using open system 

technology” and offered scalability, fast processing and resiliency. There is a second identical fallover system live, in a different datacentre, in case of any problems on the main platform.

Last month, the new system processed approximately 29 million transactions a day, worth a total of €1.7 billion (£1.47 billion).

Chambers said that with the new system, Visa has the capability to provide new services including “real-time scoring” for fraud detection.