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Industry roundup: 19 November

Companies pursuing alternative suppliers to mitigate COVID-19 impact

The COVID-19 pandemic is forcing companies to explore new suppliers and hasten digitalisation, as part of their response to the supply chain disruption caused by the pandemic. According to DNV GL’s Viewpoint survey of 1,142 companies, 56% of the respondents have experienced supply chain disruption due to the pandemic. The main causes of disruption are delays in supplies (45% of respondents), logistic issues (34%) and limitations to international trade (24%).

As a result, 57% are planning to strengthen and diversify their supply chain by working with new suppliers. Companies are also looking to mitigate the impact of the pandemic by the introduction of digitalisation (36%), revised supplier criteria (36%) and review stock management practices (36%).  

Companies are not just looking elsewhere to respond. The survey shows that companies are working actively in a collaborative and constructive way with existing suppliers to find pragmatic solutions. This follows the recommended practice to first know your suppliers, set priorities, and increase communication and collaboration. The survey shows that 77% identify and assess risks, 45% identify mitigating actions, 42% implement mitigating actions and 50% monitor implemented actions. 

This indicates a level of maturity in the management of existing suppliers that is very positive and helps provide a tailored response. At the same time, only 26% have control of indirect suppliers and includes those beyond tier 1. Knowing one’s suppliers end-to-end is essential in order to build a complete and resilient response at any time and perhaps even more so in a vulnerable and volatile situation caused by the pandemic. COVID-19 is pushing supply chain risk management higher on the agenda and companies are forced to increase their maturity and improve their supply chain resilience. 

“There is nowhere to hide," commented Luca Crisciotti, CEO of DNV GL – Business Assurance. "Every issue must be tackled head on and quickly. Resilience has become less about maintaining a steady state. It is about being able to assume an agile and dynamic approach. COVID-19 is forcing companies to reimagine resilience, to change and adapt. It is good to see that companies are learning and moving in the right direction.”


Surge in adoption sees electronic payments responsible for 77% of all transactions in Canada

Evolving technology and payments innovation continues to transform the way Canadian businesses and consumers make payments, according to data from Payments Canada’s annual Canadian Payments: Methods and Trends 2020 report.

In pursuit of more convenient, faster and secure payment experiences, Canadians continue to adopt new and evolving digital payments methods and channels - including contactless (tapping card or mobile phone), wearables, in-app payments and e-commerce. The newly released 2020 report analysed the 22 billion payment transactions made in 2019, totalling CA$9.9 trillion in value. The study points to insights and trends that continue to transform the Canadian payments landscape.

The survey found that electronic payments increased significantly, accounting for approximately 16.9 billion transactions, representing around 77% of total payments volume (number of overall payment transactions), and 62% of total payments value (the combined monetary value of total transactions) in 2019. Debit and credit cards continued to make up the largest portion of total transaction volume representing 28% and 31% of total payments volumes respectively. Credit card use exceeded debit for the first time ever in 2019, growing by 16% in volume and 11% in value.

Electronic funds transfers (EFTs) represented the largest portion of total transaction value accounting for 52 per cent of total payments value in 2019. Growth in EFT value continues to be driven by business usage to support payroll, government payments and bill payments, and other use cases.

Unsurprisingly, paper-based payments continued to decline in 2019, accounting for approximately 3.7 billion transactions, representing 23% of total payments volume. Cheques and paper-based payments continued to play a significant role, accounting for 35.9% per cent of total payments value. Interestingly, corporate cheque volumes declined by 15% but the average value of a corporate cheque increased by about 5%. Cheques remain an important payment option for large value corporate payments in Canada.


Wells Fargo offers HPR trading platform to clients

Wells Fargo Corporate & Investment Banking, a division of Wells Fargo & Company, has announced that its Quantitative Prime Services division has partnered with HPR, a financial technology player in electronic trading, to provide a next-generation trading platform for clients.

Through its collaborative partnership with HPR, Wells Fargo will provide custom trading solutions to its clients that are engineered on HPR products. In addition to launching its HPR engineered trading platform, Wells Fargo plans to offer clients access to additional HPR products, more details of which will be shared at a later date.

Wells Fargo’s Quantitative Prime Services and Quantitative Execution Desk offers customised execution and financing facilities across all fund sizes and quantitative strategies. The bank claims it combines creditworthiness and balance sheet strength with leading-edge technologies to engineer custom solutions for firms across the quantitative spectrum.

“Through our collaborative partnership with HPR, our clients will have the opportunity to deploy market-aware network hardware, advanced data delivery systems, latency management solutions and trade surveillance platforms,” said John Leone, managing director, head of Quantitative Strategy at Wells Fargo Corporate and Investment Banking. “HPR is the gold standard in risk gateways and at-trade risk management, and we’re pleased that HPR will soon launch an additional suite of products which will raise all components of the trading stack.”

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