SWIFT has announced that it is to open its world-leading Know Your Customer platform, The KYC Registry, to corporates.
ICT Industry

SWIFT to open The KYC Registry to corporates

SWIFT has announced that it is to open its world-leading Know Your Customer platform, The KYC Registry, to corporates.

In a first step, from Q4 2019, all 2,000 SWIFT-connected corporate groups will be able to join The KYC Registry and use it to upload, maintain and share their KYC information with their banks.

Enabling corporates to join The KYC Registry will be transformational both for multi-banked corporates and for their banks, who already benefit from access to the 5,100 banks strong registry and can see the huge advantage of adding corporates.

Major corporations use a range of banks in different jurisdictions around the world, with whom they need to exchange information to enable KYC checks. Data is held in different places and is often incomplete or out of date, making the process time consuming for both corporates and their banks.

The absence of uniformity, differing jurisdictional requirements and the lack of standardised data across the corporate KYC space increases these inefficiencies further.

The KYC Registry is an online portal for financial institutions to exchange institutional KYC Due Diligence information.

The platform allows banks to share KYC data and documents with their correspondents in a secure, standardised and controlled way, as well to get access to their correspondents’ complete and validated KYC profiles, resulting in efficiency and cost savings in KYC processes.

The introduction of corporates will enable corporates to upload standard information to The KYC Registry as well as to exchange other KYC-relevant documents that are requested by their banks, thereby ensuring the highest level of usability of the platform.

Banks will benefit by having access to corporates’ information through the same central repository they use for their correspondent KYC checks, thereby enabling efficient data sharing through a secure central utility, eliminating duplication and inefficiency.

Marie-Charlotte Henseval, Head of KYC Compliance Services, said: “Corporate treasurers cite KYC as one of the top three challenges they face in their bank relationships.

We’re pleased to be extending what is already the largest KYC registry for banks in the world to corporate customers.

This unique and well-established utility already delivers huge benefits to banks, and its extension to corporates will extend them the same advantages, with a standard agreed by the community and a secure platform enabling efficient data sharing.”

Denis Kruger, Head of Sub-Sahara Africa, SWIFT said: “Complying with a large number of global regulations that aim to combat money laundering and terrorist financing is a challenge for African banks and corporates, both in terms of costs and resources. The KYC Registry is one of several services SWIFT provides to support its customers in addressing this challenge efficiently and cost-effectively.”

Stephan Ziegler, Head of Bank Relations at Siemens Treasury, said: “As a global corporation, the efforts of Siemens to perform KYC-related tasks across the institution is a repetitive, lengthy and a cumbersome process.

“At Siemens Treasury, we are constantly looking for ways to increase our efficiency. With SWIFT announcing KYC for Corporates, we are delighted to see a well-positioned player moving ahead to answer this need with the full strength of its banking and corporate community.”

John Colleemallay, Senior Director Group Treasury & Financing at Dassault Systèmes, said: “KYC for Corporates is a dream come true for all Treasurers, considering the heavy workload involved in providing the same documentation several times in multiple formats to our banking partners.

“We look forward to having a secured shared registry where we can more easily and rapidly complete the KYC processes.”

Daniel Ochsner, Member of Management, Würth Finance International B.V. and Chairman of SWIFT Corporate Group Switzerland, said: “We are very pleased to see that SWIFT has aligned its banking community to provide a simplified KYC experience to corporates.

“The success of The KYC registry for banks and the trust we put in SWIFT puts us at great ease when it comes to exchanging documents and information with our global bank partners”.