Swift has launched a new pilot of its global payments innovation (gpi) service, which will see the payments tracker cover low-value payments made by consumers and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

Swift’s gpi enables users to get an end-to-end real-time status on their cross-border payments as well as a final confirmation when the money is in the account of the beneficiary. Originally rolled out in May 2017 for banks, it was subsequently extended to corporates in September last year.

“The success of Swift gpi, which is used by thousands of banks and carries billions of payments globally, enables ever-faster transaction processing times and transparency, and it now provides us with the opportunity to transform the experience in the SME and consumer payment markets,” says David Watson, chief strategy officer at Swift. “We expect that our new gpi initiative for low-value cross-border payments will similarly have widespread adoption and help us deliver our vision of making payments brilliantly simple for everyone.”

The latest pilot forms part of Swift’s larger strategy to expand its focus beyond financial messaging into end-to-end transaction management services, and is being carried out in co-operation with 20 banks, who are testing out the functionality of the service.

The first trial payments were exchanged at the end of September by Bank of China, Barclays, BNP Paribas, BNY Mellon, Deutsche Bank, KEB Hana Bank, MYbank, National Australia Bank, SMBC, Standard Bank, StoneX, UniCredit and Wells Fargo. An additional seven banks – Banca Intesa, BBVA, DNB, HSBC, Sberbank, Société Générale and Standard Chartered – will participate in a pilot phase starting at the end of October, with the eventual aim of making the service available to all gpi financial institutions in 2021.