Transcript – Episode 144

Episode 144 – Innovation in Fast Money: 4th Annual RTP Network Update – Steve Ledford, The Clearing House

 

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

Welcome to Payments on Fire, a podcast from Glenbrook Partners about the payments industry, how it works and trends and its evolution. I’m George Peabody, partner at Glenbrook and host of Payments on Fire. Today joining me once again for the fourth time on the podcast is Steve Ledford, who’s the SVP of products and strategy at The Clearing House, and he’s the leader of his company’s real-time payment network initiative. So Steve, very glad to have you back. Can’t wait for the update.

Steve Ledford:

Always glad to come back to Payments on Fire.

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

So Steve, a lot has happened in the last year since we spoke. Nevermind, there’s been this little pandemic event that’s taken place. But I can’t wait to hear what’s up with RTP and what’s happened over the course of the last year. So just to set the stage for our listeners who aren’t familiar with RTP. The RTP network real-time payments is a new payment system for the US. Similar systems exists in 50-plus markets around the world. And what makes this so exciting, it’s really a wholly new systemic payment system that sits right next to our ACH system and checking and cash and cards and the like.

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

It’s a push payment system. So I log into my bank, I find the destination, of the party I want to send it to, I authenticate that transaction, provided there’s money in the account, messaging goes to the receiver, to me, to the intermediate banks and they get their money in a matter of, well, really a matter of seconds. That’s quite a change. So cool system. It’s got some interesting characteristics that we’ll want to talk about. But Steve, why don’t we get an update on the status of RTP’s implementation? We’ve been talking for four years. You’re four years into the rollout. Where are we now?

Steve Ledford:

Yeah. We launched November of 2013. And this last year has been really a period of growth. We’ve seen more financial institutions join the network. I think we just went over a hundred, compared to right around 20 or so mostly large institutions that were on the network a year ago.

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

Are those direct integrations?

Steve Ledford:

There’s a continuum. First of all, every financial institution on the network is considered to be a direct member of the network. We don’t have, say, two tiers of membership. Everyone has all of the same both expectations, but also all of the same access to the network. What differences there are, are how one connects to the network. So some financial institutions, they provision their own telecom connection to us, and they’re connected to the network. Others are going through a third-party who’s acting as a gateway. They’re connecting to the network and connecting back into the bank or credit union system, but that’s the role that they’re playing, but they’re doing it on a third-party basis. You get the economy of having multiple financial institutions connected through a single point.

Steve Ledford:

And then there’s a third ring where pretty much all of their back office processing is being done by one provider. And in that case, that party, when they connect into our network, they can actually bring on any of those financial institutions. It’s just a matter of getting them to sign the requisite agreements and getting them on the network. And that can happen pretty quickly. So it’s a continuum. It’s not just a either/or, but all are considered direct members. We don’t have any difference in terms of what the end user expectation would be.

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

I love that. For the smaller institutions who have outsourced virtually everything, it’s just really a contract with you and a checkbox on their technology side. And they’re suddenly able to run transactions over your rails.

Steve Ledford:

It’s a good idea, by the way, if you make sure that folks in your branches and call centers are ready for it too, and your customers. But yes.

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

Oh that.

Steve Ledford:

There’s a little bit more involved, but it’s not the technical side of it. It makes it a lot smoother.

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

Yeah. Cool. So what kind of volume you’re seeing? What’s happened from a volume point of view over the last year?

Steve Ledford:

Actually over the last year, we more than doubled the volume over the network. We’re doing hundreds of thousands of transactions a day, billions of dollars. I mean, it’s now a maturing network. I think when you’re comparing yourself to something that’s been around for 40 years, it’s hard to say you’re mature. But it’s being used for everyday transactions and a whole lot of different use cases. We’re very happy to see that. And we’re also happy to see a broadening in the way it’s being used. And I think last time we talked, I think we were starting to see a number of kind of interesting use cases. We now have use cases we don’t even know are going across the network, which is appropriate. It’s designed to be a general purpose network, like the ACH or like the wire transfer networks. But we’re pleased whenever we hear of some new way. We’ll have someone, we’ll see it pop up in the news, we’ll see someone calling us, we’ll maybe the banks that is banking, a customer saying they’re using it for this. And a lot of these are things we never would have imagined a year ago.

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

Oh, for example?

Steve Ledford:

When we launched this network back in 2017, the whole concept of payroll on demand didn’t really exist. And then we started seeing it. We’ve had actually for a while now, we’ve had gig economy type of thing, where the delivery driver maybe would be paid in when they cashed out. But that’s a little bit different. We’re talking now about just every day folks who are on a payroll who can now get paid on demand, or payroll applications where the employer wants to get the money out quicker, maybe shorten their cycle. And so we never really counted on a lot of payroll because I mean, the fact is direct deposit does work. But there are these applications where folks want to do something a little bit different.

Steve Ledford:

And I think that’s probably the fastest growing application we have right now, are various payroll-related applications. And we weren’t counting on that. And that was one that we kind of figured it would eventually happen, but it happened much more quickly than we thought, was in the merchant processing business. The merchants want to get their money quickly, of course. And as part of some of the expedited settlement programs that are numbers of merchant processors have, they’re now doing that through RTP. It’ll save time off of the ability to deliver those funds. That’s become especially important and we saw a lot of increase in that use as merchants, retail merchants, restaurants, were affected during the pandemic and they needed to speed up their cash flows. We saw a lot of uptake on that particular application. That’s another one.

Steve Ledford:

But then who would have guessed that a payment system that is fairly new would become an important part of the way folks do mortgage loan closing? And the whole mortgage business had to adapt last year, because think about the traditional mortgage closing process. Everybody gets in the room at a title company and you start exchanging checks. Well, if you don’t want to be in a room with us, you don’t have ability to get your check vendor, what do you do? Well, we’re finding that things like the escrow payments, payments to the agents, those kinds of things, are now being done increasingly with an RTP credit transaction.

Steve Ledford:

So that’s just another interesting adaptation. We’re hearing about uses in the freight industry. Truck driver who needs to make sure that they can gas up the truck so that they can make the run, can do things like factor their invoices, their bills of lading, so that they can just payment upfront. And a lot of times that’s now being done with a real-time payment. And so these are things that we didn’t know enough about how the mortgage industry worked or was likely to adapt. We don’t really know much about the freight industry. But the folks in those industries are finding ways of using these applications.

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

So it sounds to me like it’s the ISV, it’s the independent software vendors, who have close working relationships with each one of these segments who are then turning to their bank partners and saying, “Hey, I want to use these rails inside of the app that I sell to my customer.”

Steve Ledford:

The banks are doing a good job with what I would call consultative way of working with their clients. A lot of times they’ll say “I have this thing I want to do.” And they’ll work with maybe a, say, treasury sales specialist, someone like that and they’ll come up with a way of using it. There’s a great case study that, there was a company, they’re an auto lender, and they wanted to be able to change their auto lending process and streamline it. They came to one part of it… And they were working on this. This is a back office thing that they were doing. And they said, “But we want to get the money into the customer’s hands more quickly.” Their banker said, “We have a new way of doing that.” And they built it into their process. And I think the early applications we saw were typically: I have a payment. I want to make it faster. So it’s being added to the existing process.

Steve Ledford:

This is an example of where they built it into their way of doing business. Very similar to the mortgage application I mentioned earlier. And I think that’s where the real big benefits from something like an RTP credit transaction are going to come in, are when you change the way you do things, it makes your business better. And the payment is part of it. No two ways about it. We want to see a whole lot of payments that just go across the network that are just a faster and more certain way of doing the payment. But what’s really exciting is when you see folks changing their business processes, and this is a way of making that happen. That’s where we’re going to see folks really doing things.

Steve Ledford:

And that’s just on the credit transfer side. As we’ve talked about before, one of the other features of the network is the ability to do a request for payment. We don’t have debits on this network. You can’t just go in and use your RTP network and say, “Hey, I want to take money out of your account.” But what you can do is send something saying, “I want you to pay me this amount,” and you can refer to an invoice. You can refer to a consumer bill. This is something we’re expecting to see a lot of uptick on this year. Now that a lot of folks have gotten used to making the payments, or receiving the payments, using the RTP network, we now have banks that are going to be offering this to their clients, their customers, whether they’re consumers for bill payment or whether they’re businesses for, say, invoices, B2B type payments.

Steve Ledford:

Well, we’re now starting to see that move into the market. And when you have the ability to say, “I have a request for payment. Look at this invoice here. Will you pay me?” And then I can immediately send something back saying, “I got your payment, everything’s good.” You’re now taking the entire process of commerce and shrinking it down to something that’s as close to instantaneous as I think you’ll ever really get.

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

Yeah. And one of the things I really like about this approach is that not only is this request to pay message type out there to encourage a quick payment, it’s also carrying the message about what it’s for. So the reconciliation side, on the biller’s side, it gets much simpler.

Steve Ledford:

Oh, it’s not just because it can carry the information, but when you make a payment in response to a request for payment, you know exactly what information the biller or the supplier needs. And so you should have very, very few failures to reconcile. If I tell you that “Here is the account number I want you to send back to me, or the invoice number. This is the date that it is due.” There should be very few reasons why that’s not going to work on just a straight through type of process. And that’s what the real power of this is. It’s the timeliness. It’s the fact that it puts both sides in control of what they need. The request for payment, the biller then knows when they send it. The consumer, the payer, the buyer, they can time a bit so that they’re not overdrawing their account. They can time it so it matches up to when their cashflows are there.

Steve Ledford:

If they have a dispute, it doesn’t automatically debit and they have to go and try to reclaim their money. They can say, “I want to resolve this dispute before I hit the pay button.” I mean, all of these things put both parties in more control than they have over some of the existing processes.

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

You’re saying that this request to pay message type, now you’re finally getting people who are interested in deploying it, but we’ve still not seen much out there in terms of activity.

Steve Ledford:

We’ve not really had much activity because you do need both sides to be able to handle that entire loop. Send the request for payment, your customer can pay it and it comes back. And that takes deployment on both sides. But what we found is there’s a group of financial institutions that are all pretty much at about the same time deploying that ability on the consumer side. We have some that have done about the business to business side, and we’re now seeing folks realize that we’re going to see more activity there. But knowing that I, as a biller, can send out a request for payment and that most of my customers will be able to receive it and pay it. That’s what’s going to motivate me.

Steve Ledford:

So we needed to get that base of financial institutions that we’re offering this through, with mobile banking, online banking, those kinds of channels through their customers, to put that in place. We have some early activity on that, but what we’re looking for is when we have that broad deployment. So if I’m a biller I know, “You know what? Most of my customers are going to be able to receive this and pay this.” That’s when it becomes compelling to both sides. And so it’s creating that critical mass, for the request for payment process on top of the critical mass we already have for the payments.

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

Do you see much activity with respect to the banks exposing RTP to their consumer level account holders? Not in the business space, but in the consumer banking.

Steve Ledford:

More and more. More and more. One of the applications that really took off last year was account to account transfers, which are offered to consumers, in many cases, building on an existing product that someone had. Most banks offer the ability to go in and say, “I want to do a transfer to this account.” You set it up ahead of time, and you’ll set it up to be done on ACH. And ACH, it works great, but it is going to be something that goes through whatever the ACH cycle is. It’s very easy if you’re making one of those transfers to move that over from an ACH to an RTP transaction if the receiving financial solutions is one of the ones on the network. When I say it’s easy, I mean, obviously there’s work, but the credentials are the same.

Steve Ledford:

And so what’s happened is there’s a number of financial institutions who’ve taken their existing transfer product and said, “We’re adding RTP.” What’s fascinating is when that happens, they immediately get an uptick in customers who are using that. We frankly were quite surprised by how much of this account to account transfer activity was already going on, in addition to the ones that we’re familiar with. I mean, obviously things like Zelle are very popular products. But just terms of these recurring, “I do these all the time” transfers, there’s a lot of that activity. And that’s now been more and more moving over to the RTP network as more and more financial institutions enable that.

Steve Ledford:

The one other thing I did want to mention is, you may have seen the announcement we had last year, where we have now been working with colleagues at Early Morning on making it where financial institutions can send Zelle transactions over the RTP network. It’s a way of settling those transactions, moving the money. And we expect the first of those actually going across the network very soon. And so that’s another example of giving access to the RTP network to consumers. This consumer bill pay using requests for payment is another one. And there are also providers who are looking at enabling conventional bank bill pay, which has been going on for awhile, but allowing that to then work with the RTP network.

Steve Ledford:

And what we’re talking about here is giving the customers a variety of ways of moving money. But the key is people move money for a reason. I want to transfer funds to another account. I want to pay friends, family, someone. I want to pay a bill. It’s being built into those experiences as a way of enhancing those. And so I think that’s what you’re likely to see more of. It’s not like there’ll be something called RTP as a transaction for a customer to use. It’s just RTP will enable their transfers to move more quickly. They’re bill pay to be made immediately.

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

I remember, I probably say this every time we talk, Steve, is that I remember when you launched the RTP network, you simply said, “I want to be your plumber.”

Steve Ledford:

That’s it. We’re the plumbers.

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

Yeah. So the P2P that’s, Zelle’s, makes a lot of sense. Because Zelle, I think it’s fair to say that a lot of their value is indeed in the directory that they maintain.

Steve Ledford:

Oh absolutely.

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

And that’s a service that you don’t do as a plumber. And I want to wind back for a sec to the request to pay message, which one of the fundamental attributes of RTP is the messaging format that you use called ISO 20022, super rich way of representing the data about the payment. And no doubt it’s embedded in the request to pay message. And this is sort of a step up on the accounts payable and receivable side. Are you seeing outfits like ERP vendors like SAS and Salesforce and others starting to integrate ISO 20022 in their messages and use that as input?

Steve Ledford:

My answer was going to be, as they always say in improv, yes and. And it’s yes, but that’s not enough. I mean, there the reality is most of these, especially the large ones that operate on global scale, they’ve been dealing in markets that have been using ISO 20022 messages for the years, SAS as a good example. The key is not so much what you can do in terms of hosting two accounts, that type of thing. That’s important. The key is that the actual applications that are going to be dealing with accounts payable and accounts receivable, working with their financial institutions, there’s a lot of different variations on that. I might be using SAP as my core ERP engine, but I might be using a different application for accounts payable or maybe something I built. So there’s still a lot of work that needs to be done.

Steve Ledford:

What we are finding is an increasing number of those providers of, whether it’s a treasury system, whether it’s a accounts payable, are integrating this into their way of doing it. They might be enabling APIs that allow one to connect directly to your financial institution, but they’re taking advantage of the kinds to messages. But it’s not going to be just a simple matter of going to three ERP vendors and saying, “Build this little widget and it’ll work.” There’s an entire cluster of firms that specialize, maybe in different industries, segments, they’re doing it. And we’re seeing more and more activity in that way. A good example of that is, you might’ve seen an announcement that something called Modern Treasury. They announced that they had some good growth. And one of the things they announced is that, I think they said about 6% of all their transactions are RTP transaction. They’re enabling it for their customers.

Steve Ledford:

Similarly, you’ve probably seen similar things from a number of the specialists who deal with accounts payable, accounts receivable thing. And by the way, we’ve now enabled RTP and we’re getting that for use. That’s the kind of thing where you need to do it because a company is going to want to use tools they have, as those become adapted to RTP, they’re going to get access to it. As their banks are making this available to them through their portal, through the API, through some of the other products they have, they’ll be able to use it. And that’s we’re seeing happening is it’s made available, and then folks say, “Ah, this is how I’m going to use it.”

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

And the entire ecosystem and supply chain has to be built around each one of these new payment systems. So it takes time. Speaking of that, there’s another real-time retail payments network that’s building here in the US called a FedNow. And we’ve seen this model before where the Fed operates something, and well The Clearing House operates a parallel. What’s the interoperability likely to look like between the two systems?

Steve Ledford:

One of the things we are doing is, and I believe that the folks from the Fed have also mentioned this, is that we have been working with the folks on the FedNow project to go through our message spec and let them know how the different elements work. There’s a lot of things you can do in ISO 20022. FedNow will be ISO 20022. But we’re going over how we have deployed it, how all of the banks and credit unions on the network and the third party process have already deployed it, so that they can understand that. And as they come forward with their specifications, their designs for the network, the closer that those are to what we’ve deployed, the more likely it is that you’ll see, say, service providers who can offer both of them pretty seamlessly. Those kinds of things.

Steve Ledford:

That’s the first thing you need to do is you need to have a lot of similarity in what they’re doing to achieve any type of interoperability. And we’re going to do whatever we can to make sure that we’re supporting the folks at the Fed and knowing how we work, how we can do things so that they can try to make it as easy for the industry as possible to use both. And that’s the first step. We’ve had a good relationship with them. We’re working with them very closely. And so we’re looking forward to seeing a little bit more about the design that they’re going to be going into market with.

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

Good to hear. One of the problems with these real-time payment retail payment systems is turning out to be fraud, particularly on the consumer side. And, I’m not pointing a finger at the… Well, I am pointing a finger at these systems because they make wonderful targets. They push money in real time. They are subject to the same fraud that is plaguing almost everyone, which is account takeover and phishing. And of course those protections are… Well, they’re really a function of what the financial institution has to put in place, as well as customer awareness. But it’s reached almost, it’s not crisis proportions, but it’s at very high level of the faster payment systems in the UK where this authorized push payment fraud, where to the bank, it looks like it’s a perfectly valid transaction, but either the sender has been tricked into sending it into the wrong account, or a fraudster has taken over that account holder’s credentials somehow. That’s a serious problem in terms of simply uptake of a system. Is there a role for the network, for RTP in this case, or not?

Steve Ledford:

Obviously as a network operator, we want to make sure that folks feel safe using our payment system. Let’s take a look at the UK because there are two sides. You mentioned the account takeover. Account takeover is actually accounting for a very small amount of any type of fraudulent type of transactions over there. They’ve done a very good job of that. And in fact, if you look at unauthorized payments, an account takeover is an unauthorized payment, because someone is making a payment on your behalf but you didn’t authorize it. The rate for that, just based on the UK, is less than one basis point. So if you compare that to debit cards, credit cards, which have multiples of that in terms of fraud-

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

That’s good.

Steve Ledford:

It shows, in terms of unauthorized payments, there are some inherent advantages to any credit transfer system. And if your financial institution, payment source provider, is doing a good job of authenticating that you are who you are, it actually does a good job of reducing that down to very low levels. And so I think where the concern in the UK is, is where someone has been duped. They’ve been scammed. And by the way, there are things that are being done there to address the problem. Things just to really make sure the customers are being more careful.

Steve Ledford:

So one of the things that has been effective that some of the financial institutions have deployed are things like, before someone sends a famous saying, “How well do you know this person? Is this someone… ” They’ll think of the current scams and they’ll say, “Is this one of these?” Just to give folks pause. And those things can be very helpful. I think we’re seeing some of the similar things with various push payment type of things, where in terms of the way you interact with the end user, you can do things to help protect them from being defrauded, that type of thing.

Steve Ledford:

And I think the first thing you want to do is you want to make it where folks are less likely to fall victim to these scams in the first place. That’s just good customer service. And we’re seeing more and more of that, wherever folks are given the opportunity to make those payments. And so I think that’s one thing. One of the things we do with the network is if there is fraud related to a transaction, we require that be reported to us, account takeover, that type of thing, unauthorized payments. Those need to be reported to us because with a credit transfer system you don’t automatically see that in the returns.

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

No. That’s right.

Steve Ledford:

So we require that you report it. I am happy to say the incident has been very, very low so far on the RTP network. But I also realize that could just be a matter of the types of transactions going through. It’s unlikely you’re going to find someone who is creating unauthorized payroll transactions or merchant settlements or wallet downloads or B2B payments. That’s not what you’re typically going to see. We want to make sure that we’re staying on top of this so as we see things emerge, we can stay ahead of them. And it’s one of the things that we do. But a lot of it really just depends on how we interact with that customer, on somewhat of initiation. And I’m happy to say that this is something that the financial institutions take very seriously. They want their customers have a good experience. And so they’re doing things to get ahead of this before it becomes a problem.

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

So we’ve seen in Australia that the new payment platform there has got a dispute resolution layer that’s being implemented. Has there been discussion about that similar capabilities here in advance of the need?

Steve Ledford:

Well, one of the things we do have with the RTP network is we have what’s called the request for return of funds. That’s something that goes through the network. Now it is between the sending and receiving financial institutions. It’s not something where there is a judge sitting in the middle of saying, “You’re right, you’re wrong.” And this is actually very commonly how things are dealt with in a lot of payment systems is you make sure you can exchange the information. But it’s going to be whatever… I mean, Regulation E is actually pretty comprehensive in a lot of the things it deals with, is going to go govern these types of things. And financial institutions are going to be dealing with that.

Steve Ledford:

With a credit transfer, by the way, a lot of what happened with regulation is between a customer and their financial institution. I did not send that payment. It’s between them. We do still require that be reported to us so that we can monitor the situation, but we’re not involved in that. But if it’s something that goes between… I’ll give you an example. Requests for payments. If there is a party that’s sending out misleading or fraudulent or abusive requests for payments, that’s something that will be claimed using the tools or those requests for return of funds. And even though we’re not standing in as a judge, it’s a way of making sure that there’s an efficient way of dealing with that.

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

Got it. So at least you’re taking advantage of the data carrying capability of the network. I love that. Steve, so let’s sort of roll back where we started. What’s been the impact of COVID on this past year?

Steve Ledford:

Nobody expected COVID of course. And it’s changed a lot of the ways a whole lot of folks do business. And I won’t go into the way it’s changed the way we at The Clearing House do business. Like everyone else we’ve had to adapt to working remotely and that type of thing. But that’s gone fairly well. And I think that the financial services industry has done very well in general in adapting to new ways of working. That aside, I think that there are certain uses of the RTP network that maybe happens a little bit faster than they normally would have. I’ve mentioned already the move to things like payroll on demand. A lot more demand for that as folks have moved to different ways of working. I would say the merchant funding, the settlement for the merchant transactions. We knew that that was on the drawing boards for some players, but I think some of them it’s so that when their customers, their merchants, needed to have that cashflow.

Steve Ledford:

One of the other things is we saw uptick in the use of RTP for business to business payments, things like delivery of goods and services, that type of thing. And it happened really quickly as the country went into lockdown. And when we started getting feedback from banks, and sometimes directly from companies, what we found is that that was very disruptive to normal ways to pending invoices. If you don’t have folks going into the offices, they can’t run the check printer. I mean, just things as simple as that. But it also disrupted supply chains. And so as companies were figuring, “I’ve got to either get a new supplier for this,” or “I need to get faster delivery because things have slowed down.” As we all know happened during this period. They needed to find ways of getting money to suppliers, getting it there quickly, and the suppliers wanted to make sure that the money was there before they shipped goods.

Steve Ledford:

We saw a fairly marked increase in the number of unique originators of RTP payments for what were likely to be business to business payments. We don’t know exactly why folks are making payments. We’re in the middle. But when you see payments that are in the thousands of dollars going in one, two or three at a time, as opposed to large disbursements that you might see going to consumers, it’s likely to be a business to business transaction. And we saw a marked increase in those, really starting as early as let’s say, April. April and May we saw surge in that, and that’s not gone away. I think that’s now become the way a number of folks to do business.

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

I think that’s right. I think obviously the pandemic’s been a forcing function for a lot of changes in payments behavior and cashflow management for business has gotten to be hugely important given the uncertainties with respect to supply chain and a shift over to e-commerce. Looking forward to anything in particular? Anything we should be looking at towards you and The Clearing House this coming year? Keep our eyes open, if you will?

Steve Ledford:

Keep your eyes open. I mentioned that we’re seeing an uptick in the use of the request for payment, something we’ve been working for for awhile. We’re bringing forth some new things to help facilitate use of that tool and others. So like I was saying, some announcements around that. But I think I said this last year when we talked, the best thing about it is, as much as I can tell you about what we’re expecting, it’s what we’re not expecting that’s going to be the most exciting thing if it’s anything like the last couple of years. There’s a lot of creativity out there. A lot of creativity at the banks, a lot of creativity at some of the technology companies, a lot of creativity at the end users. They’re finding ways to use this network that we never would’ve dreamed of. And really that was the original purpose. We wanted to spur innovation by launching this network and we’re seeing it. And so I’m excited. I’m excited about the things that will surprise us. That’s going to be the best part of it.

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

That’s great. That’s good. It is always exciting, even sort for of a niche payment system that goes into play. I mean Zelle, that was originally a P2P play purely. I’m going to pay you back for the lunch that we had. But no, the number one use case is rent payments. So, pretty interesting.

Steve Ledford:

In fact I think they found over a billion reasons why folks wanted to use Zelle last year. That’s a huge milestone. It’s the kind of things that you want to see when you have a new payment system going. And we look forward to seeing what’s going to come down the way for us on the RTP network.

George Peabody, Host, Glenbrook Partners:

Great. Well, on that note, Steve, thanks so much for this update. Great work. Look forward to next year, hearing more about integrations and ISO 20022. And we’ll no doubt catch up more between now and then.

Steve Ledford:

Oh, absolutely. Always a pleasure to talk with you George.