Customer story

Prominent New Zealand bank works with Finastra to adopt the new ISO 20022 financial messaging standard

About the Company
Established in 1861
Industry: Banking and Financial services
One of the largest banks in New Zealand
In March 2023, New Zealand became the first country in the world to start processing cross-border transactions with Swift’s new ISO 20022 messaging standard. This change marked a major milestone for the country’s financial and banking institutions as they migrate their high-value and cross-border transactions to a globally acceptable messaging standard.

Implementing ISO 20022 can be a significant undertaking, especially for large financial institutions with complex payment ecosystems. An intermediate solution allows such institutions to adopt ISO 20022 messaging in a phased manner, enabling them to manage the transition effectively without impacting their business continuity.

Westpac NZ – one of the largest banks in New Zealand, was looking to leverage the benefits of ISO 20022’s MX messaging standard while ensuring backward-compatibility and continuous compliance with their in-house systems. To optimize internal operations and accelerate time-to-market without going through a complete overhaul of their existing payments infrastructure, Westpac engaged with Finastra to transition to ISO 20022’s data-rich MX messaging format using an intermediate solution. ISO 20022 will enable Westpac to become more agile and improve payments processing, and data quality.

“With ISO 20022 set to replace the legacy MT financial messaging formats, we were eager to find a fast route to compliance and leverage the richer data offered by the new MX format, whilst ensuring continuity for existing applications. Finastra understands our Payments business after working with us for a number of years and was able to provide a solution that solved these challenges, without us needing to upgrade our core payments platform immediately.” – said Westpac NZ Head of Payments, John Forrester, when the deal was announced.

By partnering with Finastra to embrace ISO 20022 messaging, Westpac NZ set a global precedent and laid a strong foundation for a new era in banking.

Key benefits to ISO 20022

  • Transparent messaging and communication for banking customers across the globe
  • Superior customer and data insights to keep pace with financial trends and regulatory standards
  • Greater operational efficiency with enriched MX data and ongoing compliance with their existing systems"


Finastra Global PAYplus named Best in Class Payment Hub by Datos Insights (formerly Aite Novarica Group) in Payment Hub Vendors report. Check out the report here.

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