It sounds like something from Doctor Who. But for those involved, it dominates conversations this time of year. In the world of global banking Sibos is the peak season for business meetings, making deals and networking.
" What started out as an initiative to ensure banks were speaking the same language when they sent funds cross-border has now grown into global financial infrastructure.”
Originally the SWIFT International Banking Operations Seminar – SWIFT as in the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication – this banking spectacular has become just ‘Sibos’.
Sibos is less of a mouthful, for a start. But crucially it’s now much more than a seminar. Today it’s an international conference which attracts thousands of delegates from the broad world of financial services to a different location around the world each year, dissecting all the latest trends and developments and setting the agenda for calendar 2019.
Banking? Covered. New fintech? Covered. Esoteric cryptocurrency? Boy has Sibos got you covered.
Sydney’s October 2018 Sibos is the confab’s 40th birthday. What started as an initiative to ensure banks were speaking the same language when they sent funds cross-border has now grown into a critical event in the global financial infrastructure calendar.
So just what is Sibos? What is it about? What’s on the agenda? Read on to find out….
To succeed in the global marketplace, modern banks must have relationships with other financial institutions around the world to facilitate payments and trade finance – relationships which are increasingly digital.
This creates a mix of competition and cooperation at Sibos, with some banks being competitors while also needing other institutions to be partners – or clients – to make sure they have the reach in markets where they don’t have a presence.
The nature of this 'correspondent' banking is changing and the annual event of Sibos gives participants a chance to reflect on the state of the industry. The increasingly digital state is reflected in the theme in Sydney: ‘enabling the digital economy’.
Most people first hear of SWIFT when they need to make an international payment and their bank asks them for the SWIFT code - necessary to make sure the money lands in the right account on the other side of the globe.
A report from the Bank of International Settlements, the global banking regulator, shows what the traffic in this correspondent banking network looks like, using SWIFT message data from 2011 to 2015.