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Pay.UK seeks a strategic partner to deliver the retail payments infrastructure of the future

Pay.UK, the leading retail payments authority (formerly known as the New Payment System Operator / NPSO), has today published a ‘Strategic Partner Procurement Prospectus’ with the aim of collaboratively delivering the future of payments in the UK.

The publication marks the starting point of a competitive process to appoint a strategic partner to help define, deliver and operate an evolving world-class payments infrastructure. Known as the New Payments Architecture (NPA), the new infrastructure will safely and securely process trillions of pounds worth of payments every year.

The NPA is a new conceptual model for payments in the UK, which will take over the processing of Bacs, Faster Payments and potentially cheque payments. Bringing them together will catalyse innovation – meaning better payment services for everyone – by simplifying the rules, standards and processes that banks and others need to follow to use the systems.

The prospectus sets out the qualities required of potential partners – which could be a single supplier or a prime-led consortium – as well as explaining the various stages of the procurement process and the related timescales. The successful partner will be responsible for the design and build of the clearing and settlement layer of the NPA, which includes the provision of hardware, software, secure communications and security standards and operating environments.

The design of the infrastructure should be able to flex and accommodate future volume changes that arise as a result of the ‘Internet of Things’, PSD2 and interoperability demands. It is expected that the successful strategic partner will be selected in Q2 2020.

Pay.UK has been tasked by the Payments Strategy Forum to deliver the future of payments in the UK via the New Payments Architecture. Publication of this prospectus is the launch pad for the delivery of this unique undertaking, representing a massive opportunity for potential partners to be involved in delivering the core of a next-generation retail payments ecosystem. Our key purpose is to enable a vibrant UK economy. This is the start of a hugely exciting journey to deliver this objective and we look forward to engaging widely to find the right partner to help us meet our aim.

Said Paul Horlock, Chief Executive of Pay.UK

Pay.UK is the leading authority for the country’s retail payments, maintaining and developing the systems and standards that are core to the economy functioning on a dayto-day basis. Pay.UK works in the public interest to ensure the payment systems the country relies on to get their salaries, pay their bills and make online and mobile banking payments are safe, innovative and resilient.

The ‘Strategic Partner Procurement Prospectus’ is available here to download. Any interested parties can contact the Pay.UK procurement team by emailing with ‘procurement’ in the subject line.

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