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Records broken as Bacs sets new processing highs



Last month proved to be a record-breaking one for New Payment System Operator (NPSO) subsidiary, Bacs Payment Schemes Limited (Bacs), the organisation behind Direct Debit and Bacs Direct Credit in the UK.

Across August, a huge 580 million payments were processed, smashing the existing record of 573 million, set in December 2015. A new daily high was also set at the end of last month, with 114 million transactions processed in a single day, over 2 million more than the previous record, registered in June 2017.

The news underlines the continued appeal of automated payments to UK businesses and consumers alike, and comes on the back of a memorable 2017 in which Bacs processed over 6.34 billion payments, worth a total in excess of £4.9 Trillion.

This included over 4.2 billion Direct Debits - a year-on-year increase of 3.8 per cent, or 155 million payments - while Bacs Direct Credit saw values increase to £3.6 trillion, up 3 per cent on the previous 12 months.

Paul Horlock, chief executive of the New Payment System Operator, said: “These latest records again illustrate the importance of Bacs’ products to consumers and businesses across the nation, and their vital role within UK plc.

“Crucially, this also highlights the continued trust in what are established payment products, reflecting the expertise of the Bacs team. It is this knowledge which will be hugely valuable as the NPSO works to create the future of retail payments in the UK, driving value for people and businesses and enabling a vibrant UK economy.”

Andy Hollingdale, general manager of Bacs, said: “Following what was a record year in 2017,  it’s particularly pleasing to be able to celebrate the setting of these new daily and monthly processing records.

“As we mark our 50th year, it’s clear that our products continue to be the payment methods of choice for the millions of consumers and businesses which rely on them each day.”

For further information contact our press office.


Notes to Editors:

About the New Payment System Operator:

NPSO Limited is the holding name for the company that has been set up to consolidate Bacs Payment Schemes Limited (Bacs), Faster Payments Scheme Limited (FPSL), and the Cheque & Credit Clearing Company Limited (C&CCC) which incorporates the Image Clearing System (ICS) that will replace the paper processing system for cheques currently managed by C&CCC. These retail payment systems, which process over £6.4 trillion worth of payments every year between them, are joined by UK Payments Administration Ltd (UKPA), which provides people, facilities and business services expertise to support the systems behind the payment system operations.

Bringing all of these retail payment services together will reduce complexity and risk, providing a platform for innovation. The company will support a vibrant UK economy by enabling a globally competitive payments industry in the UK.

About Bacs:

Founded in 1968, Bacs has processed over 130 billion payments in the last five decades. In 2017, a record 6.34 billion UK payments were made this way with a total value of £4.9 trillion, including over 4.2 billion Direct Debits. A new record was also set on 31 August 2018, with 114 million transactions processed in a single day.

On 1 May 2018, Bacs Payment Schemes Limited became a wholly owned subsidiary of the new home for UK retail payments, the NPSO. The responsibility for the operations of Direct Debit, Bacs Direct Credit, the Current Account Switch Service, Cash ISA Transfer Service and the Industry Sort Code Directory were handed over to the NPSO.

The Bacs payment systems are recognised as systemically important infrastructure under the Banking Act 2009. This means that, as the owner and operator of Direct Debit and Bacs Direct Credit, the NPSO is regulated by the Financial Markets Infrastructure Directorate at the Bank of England.