Post Office Opens Up For Digital Banking Customers

Steve McCaskill is editor of TechWeekEurope and ChannelBiz. He joined as a reporter in 2011 and covers all areas of IT, with a particular interest in telecommunications, mobile and networking, along with sports technology.

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Partnership with APS will allow customers to access banking services in 11,500 Post Office branches

Online banking customers will soon be able to access their accounts at the local Post Office following a landmark deal with a leading alternative finance provider.

Advanced Payment Solutions (APS) has announced it will become the first ‘non-bank’ to offer banking services through the Post Office network, meaning its Cashplus customers will now be able to access a range of services at over 11,500 Post Office branches throughout the UK.

This includes depositing and withdrawing cash in real time, as well as being able to make instant balance enquiries from Post Office counters.

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APS, which has nearly one million business and consumer current account customers, says the new partnership is an important step in helping alternative financial service providers compete with traditional banks.

“By allowing our customers access through the Post Office network, it will enable us to provide a solution to the diverse needs of our customers – extending our simple, transparent online services to in-branch facilities,” the company’s co-founder and CEO, Rich Wagner, CEO said.

“Embracing new players into an infrastructure designed for banks marks a significant step towards levelling the playing field between alternative financial service providers and traditional banks.”

Crucially, the company is the fastest growing provider of payment solutions to local government, as its prepaid card and current account, run in partnership with MasterCard, supports over 1 in 5 of the UK’s local authorities with their social care programmes, handling over £180 million worth of benefits payments each year.

“APS and MasterCard have a history of driving financial innovation for customers often digitally or online,” said Tamer El-Emary, head of card issuing at MasterCard UK and Ireland. “In this instance we are going further and adding choice to consumers and businesses who need to pay in or withdraw cash on the high street.”

A recent Experian study found that more and more British consumers are using their mobile devices to make transactions, and that a growing number of us think traditional debit and credit cards will disappear entirely within the next few years.

Overall, a third of the UK population (33 per cent) believes credit and debit card payments will no longer be the preferred method of payment in 2020, as paying with a smartphone becomes the method of choice instead.

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