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SAP and Visa digitalise B2B payments for APAC businesses - Industry roundup: 30 June

EC proposes framework for digital euro

Amid a flurry of recent announcements, the European Commission has announced a legislative proposal establishing the legal framework for a possible digital euro to complement euro banknotes and coins. The EC says this would ensure that people and businesses have an additional choice – on top of current private options – that allows them to pay digitally with a widely accepted, cheap, secure and resilient form of public money in the euro area.

Significantly, it would be available for online and offline payments, i.e., payments could be made from device to device without an internet connection. The EC gave examples of “from a remote area or underground car park” to illustrate this. While online transactions would offer the same level of data privacy as existing digital means of payments, offline payments would ensure a high degree of privacy and data protection for users: they would allow users to make digital payments while disclosing less personal data than they do today when making card payments, just like when paying with cash, and the same as what they disclose when they take cash out of an ATM. Nobody would be able to see what people are paying for when using the digital euro offline.

Banks and other payment service providers across the EU would distribute the digital euro to people and businesses. Basic digital euro services would be provided free of charge to individuals. To foster financial inclusion, individuals who do not have a bank account would be able to open and hold an account with a post office or another public entity, such as a local authority. It would also be easy to use, including for persons with disabilities.

Merchants across the euro area would be required to accept the digital euro, except very small merchants who choose not to accept digital payments (as the cost to set up new infrastructure to accept payments in digital euro would be disproportionate).

Speaking about the announcement, Alisa DiCaprio, Chief Economist at R3, commented: “Today’s legislation signals the EU is moving forward with plans for a European CBDC, with the bill acting as a foundation for a future privacy framework. Some members of the public may still have lingering concerns around CBDCs linked to privacy, so having the right design framework and technology in place can help address and alleviate these potential barriers to adoption. Additionally, the introduction of specific smart and targeted regulation should be embraced to ensure that user data is kept private. Targeted regulation can act as a funnel for innovation, providing trust and transparency by creating clear guidelines on how the technology is applied.”


SAP and Visa digitalise B2B payments for APAC businesses

SAP and Visa have announced that they are collaborating to streamline and simplify business-to-business (B2B) payments for businesses of all sizes. Starting with the Asia-Pacific market, the collaboration will embed payments into the SAP ecosystem through the SAP Business Technology Platform (SAP BTP), further digitalising and speeding up B2B payments across Asia-Pacific’s supply chains.

This is the first time Visa and SAP will join forces to explore embedded finance in the B2B market through SAP BTP to offer convenient B2B payment services to SAP customers. Many businesses in Asia Pacific, particularly smaller ones, lack the resources to digitalise B2B payment acceptance and cannot accept commercial card payments. Through this collaboration, the B2B payment services running on SAP BTP will inject more automation into payments and help enterprises drive further efficiency in their purchasing as they make payments securely with a few clicks.

SAP BTP is designed to allow Visa and SAP to help bridge working capital gaps in the supply chain. Under its suite of commercial and money movement solutions, Visa will deliver capabilities through SAP BTP to route commercial payments to all suppliers, whether or not they accept card payments. Businesses that are Visa cardholders will be able to make payments seamlessly and utilise their cardholder benefits both domestically and cross-border. Businesses will no longer need to resort to manual and time-consuming payments, such as cash and cheques, reducing the time needed to process and complete transactions and increasing cash flow for both payers and suppliers.

The embedded finance solution will be offered initially to SAP customers in Australia, India, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam, with plans to roll out across other markets in the region.


Trovata and PNC to provide integrated payment processing for corporates

Trovata has announced an expanded working relationship with PNC Treasury Management to provide joint customers with integrated payment processing capabilities. The newly enhanced relationship enables PNC’s and Trovata’s business clients to make transfers and send payments via ACH, wire and RTP, using API integrations, thus eliminating the need for a third-party intermediary.

The new integration aims to deliver a streamlined, automated end-to-end money movement experience to Trovata subscribers and PNC's commercial and corporate banking clients. With Trovata and PNC's PINACLE Connect API integrations, joint clients can govern payment execution according to their unique signature authority matrix, treasury policy and internal controls. Furthermore, the integrated payment experience delivers faster initiation and automated reconciliation, and with RTP, instant settlement.

Additionally, PNC and Trovata clients can automate high-volume batch processing with Trovata’s multi-bank API platform. With a seamless developer experience, joint customers can use a single API to build and manage workflows with multiple banking partners.


Croatia successfully joins TIPS

The TARGET Instant Payment Settlement (TIPS) platform has welcomed the Croatian market following its recent successful migration to the system. TIPS is the Eurosystem’s instant settlement platform for electronic retail payments. 

The Croatian automated clearing house Financial Agency (FINA) is now reachable in TIPS, as are the following seven Croatian banks:

  • Addiko Bank d.d. Zagreb.
  • BKS Bank AG, Glavna podružnica Hrvatska.
  • Hrvatska poštanska banka d.d. Zagreb.
  • Istarska kreditna banka Umag d.d. Umag.
  • Partner banka d.d. Zagreb.
  • Privredna banka Zagreb d.d. Zagreb.
  • Zagrebačka banka d.d. Zagreb.

European citizens and firms can now instantly send/receive money to/from accounts held with those seven Croatian banks. The migration to TIPS is a further step in connecting the Croatian market to TARGET services. The next step is for it to be connected to the TARGET2-Securities system for securities settlement, which is scheduled to take place in September 2023.


Schroders and MAS explore capabilities of tokenised investment vehicle 

Investment manager Schroders has announced a tokenised investment vehicle project to explore the capabilities for personalisation and simplification of investments that blockchain technology could deliver. A tokenised investment vehicle can wrap and issue traditional investment securities in a digital investment vehicle.

Schroders is participating in the Monetary Authority of Singapore’s Project Guardian. This initiative aims to develop a responsible and innovative digital asset ecosystem by supporting global efforts in testing the feasibility of tokenised assets while managing risks to financial stability and integrity.

Schroders will collaborate with global funds network Calastone to explore the capabilities of a tokenised vehicle for variable capital companies (VCCs) - a common fund structure in Singapore. It will potentially allow clients to improve the personalisation of their investment solutions, while the underlying blockchain technology could simplify day-to-day operational processing through increased automation and synchronised data.

The collaboration between Schroders and Calastone will also explore asset ownership linked to blockchain technology that could provide more cost-efficient investment allocation for retail and institutional investors.


LexisNexis orchestration platform aims to reduce risk and financial crime

LexisNexis Risk Solutions has launched an end-to-end customer lifecycle management platform to help businesses integrate multiple information sources to make better risk decisions and provide smoother customer journeys. RiskNarrative uses automation and decisioning technology to provide a configurable and accessible financial crime lifecycle management solution.

The growth of technology and digital platforms is changing how customers interact with businesses. Customers return to businesses expecting to be instantly recognised across multiple channels, while new customers want to be able to onboard quickly and make transactions immediately. However, this digital transition in the global economy also increases opportunities for criminals to exploit digital ecosystems and evade detection.

The new orchestration platform aims to help solve costly challenges caused by siloed operations by unifying multiple customer onboarding, compliance and risk-based workflows within a single API and platform environment. Orchestration platforms deliver a single, real-time view of customer risk for more effective and continuously responsive, end-to-end financial crime management. Organisations can expedite risk decisions through this holistic view that includes KYC, AML activity, identity documentation, behavioural biometrics and enhanced fraud detection.


Kyriba surpasses 100 million API calls

The Kyriba platform has processed over 100 million API calls for their clients to integrate with banks, ERPs, Kyriba’s App Marketplace, and clients' internal IT systems. The technology provider previously announced APIs with J.P. Morgan Chase and CitiBank and supports clients like Hunt Companies, as they migrate to a real-time ‘everything’ liquidity operation.

Kyriba has delivered live to its clients a total of 140 APIs across liquidity, cash, payments and risk management that are live in production. In addition, there are 70 API bank connectors for bank reporting and payments and 35 API ERP connectors for accounting automation, cash forecasting data integration, and static data management. The firm says it also has over 20 App Marketplace partners including ICD, Trustpair and Copper, and OpenAPIs for clients and development partners to securely integrate their systems and applications into the Kyriba platform.

“Corporate finance and IT leaders require a real-time data strategy and API connectivity to unify their data instantly and on-demand so they can navigate economic uncertainty and financial surprises such as banking meltdowns,” said Bob Stark, Global Head of Market Strategy at Kyriba. “With the increasing demand for automation and the remarkable advancements in AI and Large Language Models, API demand will exponentially increase as corporates realise the immense benefits and efficiency that can be achieved through these technologies.”


Volante helps custodian bank complete pilot testing of FedNow 

Volante Technologies has announced it has been working with a US banking customer to help the custodian bank complete pilot testing on the FedNow instant payments service. 

The comprehensive pilot test included various transaction scenarios, such as send, send/receive, and bank-to-bank pilot testing. By validating the core instant payments functionality on the FedNow network, Volante reaffirmed its commitment to assisting banks in seamlessly adopting the groundbreaking instant payments network.  

While the FedNow Service will not launch until July, banks can already test their ability to connect to the network with Volante to offer instant payment services to their customers when the service becomes available. In the meantime, Volante provides a solution to support all U.S. real-time payments, including the FedNow service, The Clearing House RTP and Zelle. 

“Key features such as the ability to automate payments and flexibility of funds are driving businesses toward faster payment options which they leverage to lower costs and help manage cash flow,” said Deepak Gupta, SVP & Global Head, Payments as a Service, Volante Technologies. “We are proud to have supported our customer in completing pilot testing and validating our ability to support core instant payments functionality on the FedNow service.”

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