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Bancnet, Inc. is a Philippine-based interbank network connecting the ATM networks of more than one hundred fourteen local and offshore banks. It is considered the largest interbank network in the Philippines in terms of the number of member banks and annual transactions. The Network's tagline is Nonstop Banking.
BancNet has forged an alliance with global payment brand JCB International. Through this alliance, JCB cardholders can now do cash advances at participating BancNet member ATMs nationwide.
BancNet serves more than 41 million ATM cardholders of its 114 members and affiliates with over 12,000 ATMs and more than 5,000 POS terminals.
BancNet was founded on July 17, 1990 as the Philippines' second ATM consortium when the ATMs of eight banks, PCI Bank (now Banco de Oro), Security Bank, Chinabank, RCBC, Allied Bank, Metrobank, International Corporate Bank (now part of UnionBank), and CityTrust Banking Corp.(now part of BPI), formed BancNet. Other members have since joined.
It was a brainchild of three senior bank officers namely: Ramon C. Arceo, Jr., SVP of Philippine Commercial International Bank(PCIBank), Carlos Pedrosa, SVP of Metropolitan Bank and Trust Company (Metrobank), and Jose F. Santos, SVP of Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC).
In 1993, BancNet signed an interconnection agreement with MegaLink to give cardholders whose banks are part of either network access to any of their ATMs, which total more than 4,000 nationwide.
In that same year, BancNet introduced the Bills Payment product which allows BancNet cardholders to pay their bill and make donations to charitable organizations using any BancNet ATM. This function has since been extended to the online payment gateway, mobile phones, and on EFT-POS terminals.
In 1997, BancNet started offering website hosting, email and surfing services to member banks at affordable rates.
In 2002, BancNet started its online banking and payment gateway system.
It was during the anniversary business forum of 2002 that BancNet introduced Interbank Funds Transfer, reportedly the first consortium-run automated transfer facility in the region. The product allows real-time, online transfer of money among the members of BancNet using either the payment gateway, the ATM or a cardholder's cellular phone.
A partnership with Globe Telecom, the second largest telecoms company in the Philippines, in 2006 allowed BancNet to expand ATM-like functions to the mobile phones of cardholders. This was followed by a similar agreement in early 2007 with Smart Communications, the dominant telecoms company, for mobile banking.
Other products that BancNet maintains for the member banks include SSSNet for the online payment processing of personal and corporate contributions to the national social security system and Tax Payment Gateway for the online processing of corporate tax payments. A similar online system for the national housing fund (PAG-IBIG Fund) and the national health fund (PhilHealth) is expected to be launched in early 2010.
A Memorandum of Agreement was signed in 2007 with Nationlink (interbank network), admitting the latter as the first network alliance member of BancNet. This allows all the rural bank members of Nationlink to enjoy the convenience of electronic banking on 8,000 ATMs and more than 10,000 Point-of-Sale terminals nationwide.
BancNet is the primary network of the following banks listed below:
About Three of its founding members merged with other banks namely:
- PCIBank was merged with Equitable Banking Corp,which formed Equitable PCI Bank which in turn was a member of Megalink and BancNet (having acquired PCIBank's seat)
- CityTrust Banking Corp was acquired by Bank of the Philippine Islands, gaining it membership but it continued to use its main network Expressnet, it recently reactivated its BancNet membership (although BancNet maintains the facilities of Expressnet).
- Allied Bank merged with its Sister Bank PNB which formed the 4th largest Philippine Bank under the name PNB.
- International Corporate Bank (Interbank) was acquired by UnionBank (please do note that ICB is different from IEB which UBP acquired in 2006 which is a Megalink member).
- Due to the fact BPI acquired CityTrust Bank which is a BancNet founding member and Far East Bank which is a Megalink founding member, it can be assumed that BPI has membership in the country's main ATM Consortium's Expressnet, BancNet (it recently reactivated its membership)and MegaLink.
- The same goes for UnionBank of the Philippines, albeit it is not a member of Expressnet but an idle member of BancNet and a member of Megalink.
- The same case also for BDO Unibank, its main network was Expressnet before merging with Equitable PCI, which in turn was a member of both BancNet and Megalink. Which makes BDO and BPI the only banks to be a member of the country's main interbank networks.
|Philippine interbank networks|
|BancNet | ENS | Expressnet | MegaLink | Nationlink|