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Payment update: Two critical drivers in payment systems development

The development of payment systems is being driven by two factors: personal experiences from elsewhere and the power that ecosystems bring new development and growth.

Personal experience

  • Corporates really do want the same experience in their business payments as they experience in all other services in their personal life:
  • A major reason for Swift gpi’s success has been that corporate treasurers and business people have just got used to being kept fully informed by couriers of when their online purchase would arrive, so why not in payments too? The accelerating demand shows how popular it is already, even though many of the banks in the difficult ‘difficult countries’ have yet to join Swift gpi.
  • Payments on a mobile phone don’t need to limited to a few $000 or even a few $million. John Scully, Managing Director, Head of Small Business Digital Sales and Service at Bank of America wrote on LinkedIn earlier this month. “This summer, an international electronics company completed a $1.6 billion payment, the biggest transaction ever, on the bank’s mobile APP(CashPro® Mobile).” Which LinkedIn readers described as “amazing”.

The driver is: “I now know what I want, and so why put up with second best?”

Exploiting technology and partnerships

Over the last few weeks, there have been many examples of using new technology and/or partnerships to offer new services, including:

  • A grocery store in Spain has implemented a face payment system developed by CaixaBank and the bank's Payment Innovation Hub alliance, comprising partner institutions Global Payments, Visa, Samsung and Arval
  • UK-based DressCode has released the ultimate in geek chic, a tailored shirt with a contactless chip installed in the cuff
  • Facebook is consolidating its payments services into Facebook Pay which will work across its main three apps: Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp

Recent partnerships announced include:

  • Google partnering with Citi and a small Stanford University-affiliated credit union to launch a checking account
  • American Express and Coupa have partnered to launch a virtual card within Coupa’s Business Spend Management (BSM) platform to help businesses better manage supplier payments. Buyer and supplier interaction is notoriously fragmented and open to fraud, and the virtual card presents an easier and more secure alternative to this process
  • Adyen has teamed up with Alipay to support Alibaba, the operator of global retail commerce business offering services to consumers, merchants, and brands.

CTMfile take: For corporate treasury departments these developments raise these questions on your payment systems strategy: 1) would you make a payment of $1bn via your mobile APP?, 2) when will you need to accept retail payments via Facebook Pay?, and 3) should you check out Coupa’s Business Spend Management platform?

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