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Industry roundup: 17 November

Miltenyi Biotec standardises corporate payments and bank management with TIS platform

German-headquartered global biotechnology company Miltenyi Biotec has selected the TIS payments platform to manage all its bank accounts, bank statements, payments and conduct detailed financial analyses. The decision for TIS was made after thorough market observation. Usability, high security standards, and effective SAP integration were noted as the deciding factors for the corporate.

Miltenyi Biotec has grown steadily in recent years, particularly in international markets. This ongoing growth, together with an increasing number of affiliates, banking partners and accounts, led to a need to standardise the company’s finance processes and to make them more efficient. Besides accounts and payments consolidation, the company also wanted to make its payment processes more professional. In Germany, payment processes were structured with the TMS but, internationally, subsidiaries and affiliates used SAP and other ERP systems for payments and connected to banks via different online banking tools.

"For our renewed banking landscape we looked for a centralised payments platform to make international payments more transparent and secure," commented Daniel Pier, group leader Treasury at Miltenyi Biotec. "With TIS, we can automate and standardise payments and monitor the processes from group treasury whenever necessary. For us, the core value of this solution is to enable us to follow closely the company-wide liquidity status at the push of a button."


Bolero and Mitigram pitch one-stop trade finance, risk mitigation and digital transaction service

Bolero International, a global trade finance digitisation company, and Mitigram, an online platform for funding and hedging trade risk, have announced a partnership. The two fintechs say they will provide corporates and banks with a one-stop-shop for trade transactions, combining the advantages of Bolero’s Galileo trade digitisation platform and electronic bill of lading, with the world’s largest pricing discovery and collaboration network from powered by Mitigram. The pair say that the benefits for corporate clients will be substantial, enabling them to bring together two linked, but currently separate, operations.

The aim of the partnership is to provide a complete, end-to-end service through the entire lifecycle of an import/export deal. For the first time, from within Galileo, a corporate customer wishing to conduct a transaction will be able to request and compare quotes from multiple banks on the pricing of risk mitigation and financing. This seamless service will continue through to the handling of the trade finance with the selected bank and the conduct of the transaction using paper and/or electronic documents on Galileo. Likewise, from a pre-trade request tendered on Mitigram to assess banks’ availability for risk cover and financing, a corporate customer will be able to issue instructions to its partner banks on Galileo, achieving straight-through execution.

"This partnership with Mitigram will deliver substantial added value for customers on both sides in a vitally important area," said Andrew Raymond, Bolero's CEO. "Bolero customers will find it far easier to access competitive financing and risk mitigation for special transactions and Mitigram customers will be able to conduct transactions on Galileo, enjoying all the huge advantages of Bolero’s advanced trade digitisation solution, which is safer, smarter and faster.”

"Our partnership with Bolero joins up two adjacent, but previously siloed processes, providing a genuinely seamless experience for corporate treasuries," commented Milena Torciano, CEO of Mitigram. "By combining our two very extensive networks of partners and customers, we will drive adoption, removing the admin burden and lack of transparency from finance and risk in world trade.”


Perception gap between banks and corporates in payment services highlights innovation opportunity 

Bottomline and Strategic Treasurer have released the results of the 2020 B2B Payments Survey, which ran from mid-March through mid-July, 2020, with over 60 questions and 300 respondents. Results show a perception gap between banks and corporate respondents, with the potential to close that gap appearing in banks’ investments in payment solutions. The data also shows rising fraud concerns, increasing perceptions of vulnerability in AP, spending plans emphasising cash flow forecasting, and integration issues driving the search for new fintech solutions.

More than half of corporate customers see their banks as investing in innovative payment solutions. Results showed a perception gap between banks and their corporate users, with 76% of banks feeling their payable services are above average, while only 41% of corporate users of those services said their needs are addressed well or extremely well. However, 57% of corporate respondents believe their banks are investing in innovative payment solutions, potentially addressing and closing this gap.

For respondents who had experienced fraud losses recently, 68% listed AP as the department ultimately held responsible for the breach. Other questions showed rising concern regarding fraud in 2020, but respondents nonetheless insist that their own organisation’s payment processes are secure, with only 5% indicating otherwise. 

When asked about their spending plans for technology related to payments, respondents emphasised solutions assisting with cash flow forecasting as the top priority. APIs and AP automation technology were also frequently included in companies’ spending plans.

For companies breaking the inertia to switch payment automation providers, over half cited integration problems as the chief cause. A quarter of respondents indicated that their reason was rationalising systems to reduce connectivity.

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