21 Aug

Westpac debuts cloud-based procurement via Coupa

Westpac debuts cloud-based procurement via Coupa
Source: Finextra21.8.2019

Westpac has delivered an Australian first in e-procurement, by partnering with Coupa, a leader in Business Spend Management (BSM), to help businesses more efficiently manage their spending within a comprehensive cloud platform. The partnership enables customers to reduce risk, improve compliance, automate manual and inefficient tasks, and ultimately, deliver cost savings to the business.

Westpac is the first bank in Australia to transform payables and purchasing through cloud-based procurement solutions for its customers. Coupa’s industry-leading Business Spend Management platform has been deployed by over 750 organisations, including MGM Resorts International, Salesforce, and Unilever.

“Corporates have invested heavily in improving the way they receive payments from customers; however, we haven’t seen the same advancements in how payments are made to suppliers. In many cases, the payables process remains inefficient, paper-based, and prone to errors. Our partnership with Coupa is the first major step towards frictionless supplier payments and delivering end-to-end automation across the working capital cycle.” said Di Challenor, Westpac Institutional Bank’s General Manager, Global Transaction Services.

“By combining the Coupa BSM Platform with Westpac’s eInvoicing, payments and reconciliation solutions, CFOs have real-time oversight into their organisations’ spending behaviour, allowing them to proactively identify and address small problems before they turn into big issues,” Ms Challenor said.

Organisations with large procurement spend or complex supplier relationships will get real-time visibility on budgets, increased purchasing power, and more efficient processes.

01 Aug

Taiwan issues three digital banking licences

Taiwan issues three digital banking licences

In a first for the island, Taiwan’s Financial Supervisory Commission has issued virtual banking licences to three consortiums – the latest development in the battle between Asian internet firms and the region’s legacy banks for a stronghold over consumer finances.

According to Reuters, Japanese app operator LINE Group’s LINE Financial Taiwan and Taiwan telecom operator Chungwa Telecom’s Next Commercial Bank were granted licences, as well as Rakuten International Commercial Bank, operated by Japanese e-commerce firm Rakuten Inc and
Taiwan’s IBF Financial Holdings.

Following in the footsteps of other Asian regulators, this move supports non-bank competitors who want to compete with traditional financial services and leverage their user databases to provide digital-first products and services.

While the Commission says it has no plan to issue more licences, this announcement comes soon after Hong Kong issued eight new online-only banking licences to groups such as Alibaba Group Holding Ltd and Standard Chartered Plc.

Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia and Korea are also expected to issue virtual banking licences this year, but if digital banks gain significant market share, Asian banks’ average return on equity could drop to as low as 6.4% by 2023, from 10.1% last year, according to McKinsey.

Link: https://www.finextra.com/newsarticle/34185/taiwan-issues-three-digital-banking-licences

01 Aug

First Abu Dhabi Bank, Etisalat launch UAE trade finance blockchain

First Abu Dhabi Bank, Etisalat launch UAE trade finance blockchain

Etisalat Digital announced a new nationwide blockchain trade finance platform called UAE Trade Connect (UTC). It was developed in partnership with First Abu Dhabi Bank (FAB) and Avanza Innovations. So far, eight banks have signed up, but the platform is open to others.

As with most trade finance blockchain initiatives, the aim is to digitize trade in the UAE. The initial scope is to address double financing and invoice fraud.

Blockchains by their nature prevent an invoice being double financed, but only if the entire sector uses that blockchain. In India, Monetago partnered with SWIFT and other organizations to try to ensure invoices don’t get double financed within India. INVIOU has a similar solution, but we’re not aware of a significant deployment as yet.

However, for the UAE’s Trade Connect, invoice fraud is just the first step, and it’s forming a working group to extend the solution. The project won’t just leverage blockchain, but also artificial intelligence, machine learning and robotics.

The banks are First Abu Dhabi Bank, Emirates NBD, Commercial Bank of Dubai, Mashreq, National Bank of Fujairah, RAKBANK, Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank and Commercial Bank International.


30 Jul

Banking News 29.8.2019


Citi appoints new Asia Pacific Head of Execution Services
Citi has announced that Curt Engler has been appointed as the bank’s Asia Pacific Head of Execution Services, who will be responsible for Citi’s regional execution business.

Standard Chartered launches "the X Card" for affluent millennials
Standard Chartered has announced the launch of the Visa Infinite X Card, the bank’s first metal card, created to appeal to wealthy millennials, which is being launched with a limited-time promotion of 100,000 Air Miles.

Maybank opens new Private Wealth arm in the Philippines
Maybank, Malaysia’s largest financial services group, has announced the opening of a private wealth arm in Makati City, Manilla.

India’s four major financial regulators connected to Sahamati Account Aggregators platform
Sahamati, an umbrella organization for account aggregators (AA) has been announced at an event, with the intent of helping to ensure that financial data shared with third parties by individuals and businesses is done so in a safe, secure manner.

21 Jul

Santander transforms shuttered branch into ‘Work Cafe’

Santander transforms shuttered branch into ‘Work Cafe’
Banco Santander is to launch its ‘Work Café’ concept in the UK, billed as a community hub offering state-of-the-art banking facilities, free co-working spaces and freshly-brewed artisan coffee.

First developed by Santander in Chile and now in six countries worldwide, the UK’s first Work cafe will open in Leeds on 18 July 2019 at a branch that was previously closed at the end of June last year.

With free wifi, co-working spaces, and meeting rooms, the aim is to create a dynamic hub for nurturing new business ideas and fostering collaboration in a relaxed atmosphere.

A total of thirteen employees will be on hand to offer support, with appointments available to meet on site with a Personal Banker, Business Relationship Manager or Select Relationship Manager for wealth clients. The cafe itself, which is open to the general public, serves up hot brews by trained baristas sourced from Taylor St. Coffee.

Susan Allen, head of retail and business banking, Santander UK says: “More than a café and more than a bank, the Work Café is a whole new banking experience, acting as a vibrant hub for local businesses and the local community. Work Cafés have been a huge success with our customers in other countries around the world, so we’re really looking forward to seeing the response here in the UK.”

19 Jul

ICICI Bank bundles digital business banking products under InstaBiz label

ICICI Bank bundles digital business banking products under InstaBiz label
Source: Finextra

ICICI Bank announces the launch of a new digital platform curated specially for MSMEs and self-employed customers to enable them to undertake their business banking transactions digitally and instantly.

Called, ‘InstaBIZ’, it allows customers to avail as many as over 115 products and services in a digital and secure manner on their mobile phone or internet banking platform. Many of the services are first-in-the-industry and are available instantly. With this, MSMEs can now enjoy enhanced convenience and productivity, as they can complete their banking transactions ‘on-the-go’, without visiting a bank branch.

This first-of-its-kind comprehensive digital platform for businesses enables them to experience the convenience of a range of services completely digitally —instant overdraft facility (upto Rs 15 lakh) & business loans, easy bulk collection & payments of funds through multiple digital modes, automatic bank reconciliation and undertake largely all of the export-import transactions like inward and outward remittances among others. Further, it is the first digital banking platform to enable instant payment of GST using the challan number in a single click payment. Additionally, they can instantly apply for a Point-of-Sale (PoS) machine as well as instant marine insurance policy—both industry first services.

MSMEs, who are not customers of the Bank, can also download ‘InstaBIZ’ and enjoy the un-paralleled convenience of industry-first solutions. Prominently, they can get instant sanction of an overdraft facility upto Rs 10 lakh simply by uploading their bank statements and KYC details. They can also apply for a current account and customise its account number, which is displayed instantly.

With the above array of digitisation, ‘InstaBIZ’ is the most comprehensive and only digital banking platform in the country and among few globally for self-employed segment and MSMEs, that provides a bouquet of comprehensive solutions in ‘one single place’.

19 Jul

Moody’s Analytics launches its Cloud Credit Risk solution

Moody’s Analytics launches its Cloud Credit Risk solution
Source: IBS Intelligence

Moody’s Analytics, provider of financial information, is launching its Banking Cloud Credit Risk solution , a computational engine and regulatory reporting tool available on the cloud. This software solution will be available as Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), this software will enable banks to comply with the latest regulations while eliminating the need for deployment and maintenance of an onsite installation.

The solution comes with preconfigured calculation rules and regulatory reports, which speeds up projects to comply with new regulations. It meets the latest requirements of the Basel Committee as well as the European Banking Authority (EBA) Solvency and Liquidity Guidelines and Regulations and local reporting requirements. Moody’s Analytics also provides regulatory monitoring and software updates which will be allowing financial institutions to adapt quickly to regulatory changes.

Andy Frepp, Managing Director at Moody’s Analytics comments “As with all of our cloud-based regulatory solutions, we have designed Banking Cloud Credit Risk to help financial institutions adapt more quickly to an ever-evolving regulatory environment while controlling their costs and gaining efficiencies, Technologies that offer flexible and scalable solutions are essential to achieve these goals.”

This SaaS provided by Moody’s lets banks to easily identify and understand earnings gaps between two reporting dates and assess the impact of future regulations on the profitability of their business enabling them to take informed decisions. By using this tool, banks can quickly load, transform and reconcile their data while benefiting from better data-logging and benefit from a unique and reliable source of data for their regulatory requirements. Banking Cloud Credit Risk joins Moody’s Analytics’ suite of cloud-based accounting and accounting solutions, which includes the Transactional Reporting Tool for AnaCredit reports in EU for accounting provisions in the United States.

19 Jul

Lloyds bank selects Optal to enable B2B payments solutions

Lloyds bank selects Optal to enable B2B payments solutions
Source: IBS Intelligence

Australian payments fintech Optal, a B2B payment solutions provider, has signed a new deal with Lloyds Bank to enable the UK based bank in offering services to its Commercial Banking clients.

The service is expected to strip away the traditional barriers associated with suppliers having to accept card payments. Optal’s Invapay solution will allow Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking clients and their suppliers to benefit from transparent and streamlined payments.

Optal’s Invapay will allow corporate buyers to use commercial cards to pay suppliers. It does this by converting commercial card transactions into cash to pay non-card accepting suppliers by Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT). This means suppliers don’t have to go through the time and expense of onboarding processes to receive card payments.

Andrew Watson, Global Head of Working Capital Solutions, Optal commented, “ We’re delighted to be teaming up with Lloyds Bank to optimise B2B payments for even more businesses around the world, Our Invapay platform really does offer a win-win for all concerned: fast, friction-free payments to facilitate seamless, transparent business processes.”

Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking clients will be able to use a secure payments system to improve supplier relations through the option to offer early payment solutions. The partnership will enable Lloyds Bank to offer a B2B payment solution to its clients.

14 Jul

Bank of Baroda to launch e-commerce platform for banking, farm-products

Bank of Baroda to launch e-commerce platform for banking, farm-products

Bank of Baroda plans to launch an online marketplace to its customers offering banking services and farm-related products.

The state-owned lender has invited bids seeking a partner to supply ‘digital commerce platform’ to provide assistance to merchants on catalog management, purchase management fulfilment, pricing, promotion and other similar services.

Bank of Baroda said it is keen to strategise and enhance online digital capabilities with a focus on creating a marketplace to fulfil services relating to different segments of customers’ daily needs and lifestyle needs.

"The bank is seeking a partner to supply digital commerce platform and provide support for its implementation for multiple use cases as decided by the bank," the bank said in a request for proposal. The bank said it will offer various kinds of banking services and farm-related products on its e-commerce platform.

The online platform partner will be required to provide assistance to merchants on catalog management, purchase management fulfilment, pricing, promotion and other similar services.

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