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Three Must-Haves for Immediate Payments Success in Brazil

Immediate Payments Success in Brazil

Recently, the Central Bank of Brazil (BCB) announced its plan to launch the country’s first instant payments scheme, PIX, which is expected to be operational by November 2020. PIX will be mandatory for all larger banks in Brazil and will work as a central infrastructure with non-stop availability. The scheme will also be based on the ISO 20022 messaging standard, which features data-rich messaging and facilitates greater availability, speed, convenience and security. Ultimately, this open environment will be a major catalyst for innovation.

To help promote financial democratization, the BCB created Agenda BC#, which features four dimensions – inclusion, competitiveness, transparency and education. PIX is part of the dimension competitiveness, as described below:

The “Dimension Competitiveness” seeks to promote adequate pricing by favoring competitive access to markets and there are several technology-driven innovations that encourage competition. However, challenges related to reducing barriers, simplifying procedures and managing risks still prevail.

In order to take full advantage of PIX and meet the demands of Agenda BC#, Brazil’s financial institutions need these three “must-haves” in place:

Continuous innovation

The goal of PIX is to make the process of innovation and inclusion simpler, faster and more cost-effective. To help achieve this, financial institutions, fintechs, service providers and retailers must deconstruct and rebuild their ongoing operations — without disrupting their current platforms and services.

Understanding how to tackle this challenge and what it represents to companies and individuals is now the focus. No matter what role a company may have in this ecosystem, the need to re-think and plan for the short, medium and long-term will signify success. This nonstop process will allow the recognition of elements that will bring differentiation. In particular, PIX will help drive a new wave of overlay services, benefitting end users and driving healthy competition among financial institutions.

Key partners

Given the complexity surrounding PIX, and the implications that holds for payments players throughout Brazil, finding the right partners will be key for long-term success. Partnering with experts experienced with immediate payments implementation projects will help to minimize the impact of these large-scale changes.

Look for partners that prioritize reliability and scalability, as these are the main characteristics of any implementation project. And since real-time payments are already in use in other markets throughout the world, global expertise is not just a plus, it is a must. Experienced partners can help reduce the total cost of ownership and offer insights into how to best meet stated goals, whether that be through the cloud, on-premise deployments, etc.


Finally, as in any other industry, time to market is essential. Having the right technology and the right partners will make for a smoother innovation experience, helping to accelerate PIX-related services. This will create an unbeatable edge for financial institutions, as they will be first to market with offerings that best take advantage of all that PIX and ISO 20022 have to offer.

Of course, priorities will not remain static and will change throughout the maturation process. With a looming November starting point, compliance should be the main priority but institutions must keep innovation, partnerships and speed top of mind to ensure success in the long run.


Discover more about immediate payments in Brazil – and around the world – in ACI’s Prime Time for Real Time Report