Special Feature

Innovation in Payments and Collections 2016: Welcome BNP Paribas's Deputy Global Head of Cash Management provides an introduction to our latest supplement, Innovation in Payments and Collections 2016, which is published in association with BNP Paribas.

Innovation in Payments and Collections 2016: Welcome

by Jean-François Denis, Deputy Global Head of Cash Management, BNP Paribas

Welcome to Innovation in Payments and Collections 2016 published by TMI in association with BNP Paribas. In an environment of market uncertainty, together with internal pressures to reduce costs and improve key metrics, this Guide illustrates the potential that recent innovations in payments and collections offer to fuel international expansion and growth in market share.

One such opportunity is driven by the emergence of e-Commerce business models. In his article, Samy Touboul, Head of the e-Commerce Team outlines some of the ways in which BNP Paribas and our partners are supporting the strategic and operational objectives of companies currently or planning to engage in e-Commerce. Through a combination of innovative banking solutions and expert advisory services, we are helping corporates to engage with customers in new ways, secure sales, and ultimately grow their business.

Some of the most significant industry initiatives that could have a strong impact on both traditional and emerging business models relate to instant payments. As Francis De Roeck, Head of SEPA Offering emphasises, while most of these initiatives are currently focused on domestic payments, the potential also exists to transform cross-border payments, presaging important developments in the way that international trade is conducted.

International expansion brings a range of challenges, not least when dealing with foreign currency flows. As Adrian Brown, Head of Commercialisation –FX+ and Wim Grosemans, Head of Product Management, International Payments, discuss, while treasurers can choose to manage their FX risk separately from the underlying commercial flows, this option is typically only open to treasuries with the necessary systems and resources in place, and/or for currencies in which exposures are sizeable. However, by integrating BNP Paribas market-leading FX Payments solutions that automate the conversion of foreign currency flows, treasurers can be equipped to support the organisation’s growth objectives without compromising on risk or efficiency.

Although improving efficiency and control in the payment process is a key objective for treasurers and finance managers, initiatives to optimise collections offer equivalent, if not greater value. As Guillaume Flies, Head of Collections discusses, this is particularly the case when implementing collections-on-behalf-of (COBO), where one entity collects customer payments on behalf of group companies. In addition, customers are increasingly taking advantage of BNP Paribas innovative Virtual Account solution that allows a company to maintain one physical account, while each business unit (or product line etc.) uses its own unique virtual IBAN to which customers make payments. This is instrumental in enabling automated reconciliation and account posting, and developing greater intelligence on incoming flows to help prioritise further initiatives for improving collection metrics and optimising working capital.

While many solutions, such as virtual IBAN, are designed to meet regional and global cash and treasury challenges, some were originally intended to meet the domestic needs in a particular country. An example is EBICS, which Andrej Ankerst, Head of Cash Management Germany and Austria and Steven Lenaerts, Head of Product Management Global Channels explain is the market standard for bank communication in Germany and France. However, as treasurers have built their processes and systems around this protocol, and developed a high degree of confidence, many do not want to have to implement a separate solution to facilitate their international flows. Consequently, BNP Paribas pioneered the concept of Global EBICS, which allows clients to leverage their domestic infrastructure to exchange flows and information and accounts across our global network.

As treasurers and finance managers face the often conflicting challenges of uncertainty and opportunity, they have never depended more on BNP Paribas. The breadth and depth of our network allows us to support the regional and global cash and liquidity requirements of our global corporates and provide in-depth insights and solutions adapted to each country. We do this through a combination of innovative, secure payment and collection solutions, and expert advisory services that allow corporates to identify and deliver on opportunities for cash management transformation whilst respecting regulatory and cultural considerations.

To find out more about BNP Paribas’ payments and collections, please contact

Filipe Simao, Head of Client Advisory, BNP Paribas Cash Management filipe.simao@bnpparibas.com

Andrej Ankerst, Head of Cash Management Germany and Austria andrej.ankerst@bnpparibas.com

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