If you are a UK developer and bank with First Direct then read this.

The more astute of you will have noticed from my previous post about the new App Hub (here) that there is no information on proceeds from the apps I have developed over the last 18 months.image

Therein lies a tale that will probably bore you but safe to say:

If you are a UK developer and bank with First Direct, read on …

Almost every month since pay outs began I have raised a support ticket with Microsoft querying why I haven’t received payment.  This culminated in me sending Microsoft a copy of the details I received from First Direct with regard to Bank Name/Address/IBAN (etc.)  in May in order to confirm that the details I had been copying and pasting into the App Hub were indeed correct.  Still nothing (I am giving you the short version, there was in fact lots of frustration and gnashing of teeth, not to mention a multitude of emails between MS and myself).

In June I was lucky enough while attending the WPUG user group at Tech Days in London to share a pint with none other than ThePhone@Microsoft.com (Brandon Watson).  I mentioned this issue and he promised to look into it.  True to his word he followed up and before long I had another email from MS expressing concern and a desire to sort the issue out.

At this point I should say that this is still speculation on my part but it appears that the App Hub doesn’t cope well with some aspects of the UK Banking system.  First Direct is owned by HSBC and it looks as though the IBAN/SWIFT address that they use doesn’t map to them, but to their parent (The Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation).  There doesn’t appear to be anything within Microsoft’s’ own validation to flag this issue (hopefully this will change in the future?)

I have now been advised to change the bank name to HSBC and been promised that a further check will be done over the next 5 days (by Microsoft) to manually validate that the new Bank Name (HSBC) and address details (First Directs’ HQ in Leeds) pass muster!  Sadly I was informed this evening that in any event this change is too late for the July pay-out .

I will update this post once MS absolutely confirms the “correct“ details to use for First Direct but thought in advisable to post this in case there are any other UK Developers out there with First Direct Bank Accounts (or I guess any other subsidiary of HSBC?).


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