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Oracle aims at financial firms with SWIFT

Oracle is adding messaging support to its E-Business Suite and Application Server for the financial industry. The firm is making its products compatible with SWIFT, an industry-owned cooperative that provides messaging services for banks and investment firms.

Oracle Corp. is further tuning its E-Business Suite and Application Server to be more amenable to banks and investment firms, building in new support for an industry-standard messaging platform used by financial institutions.

Oracle is making its applications compatible with the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT), an industry-owned cooperative that provides secure messaging services and interface software for financial companies. SWIFT said more than 7,500 financial institutions are using SWIFT to standardize their messaging and interface technologies.

The messaging technology provides a link between banks and investment firms and their customer bank office systems, Oracle said. Historically, financial services organizations have delivered information directly to their corporate customers without ensuring information could be integrated with back-office information systems.

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The SWIFT platform is compatible with Oracle, SAP and other enterprise resource planning systems.

Support for the platform in Oracle Application Server allows users to receive, translate, transform and deliver messages. It improves auditing and tracking of messages and integrating them to information systems, Oracle said. E-Business Suite applications will be able to handle the messages for financial and information transactions, including procurement, payables and expenses.

For example, corporate treasurers using the platform will be able to integrate back-office information with their bank-supplied cash management services to allocate funds.

Building in additional support for an industry standard would appeal to financial firms and their customers, said Paul Hamerman, a senior analyst with Cambridge, Mass.-based Forrester Research Inc.

"There are over 13,000 customers using the E-Business Suite, and financial institutions are among those clients," Hamerman said.

Oracle has been making improvements this year to add auditing and tracking support in its products to meet financial regulations such as Sarbanes-Oxley and Basel II compliance, according to analysts. Companies and have been upgrading systems to improve reporting and auditing processes in the wake of the Enron and WorldCom financial scandals.

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