2022 FinTech and Payment Predictions

BY JED RICE ON DECEMBER 14, 2021

As billing and payment become increasingly critical touchpoints between businesses and their commercial and consumer customers, many banks and billers will make taking the friction out of these processes a strategic priority in 2022. We see that playing out on multiple fronts.

Read the Article in Bank Business.

Citi® Present and Pay Now Live with Account Authentication and Real-Time Payments

FROM THE GREEN SHEET: NEWSWIRE ON NOVEMBER 14, 2021 NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Dec 13, 2021 — Citi’s Treasury and Trade Solutions (TTS) has enhanced Citi ® Present and Pay, its market-leading electronic bill presentment and payment platform for institutional billers in the U.S. Key new capabilities include the addition of Citi ® Verify, a real-time account verification tool, and electronic bill (e-Bill) distribution capabilities through Request for Pay (RfP) messaging via the RTP© network, the real-time payment system from The Clearing House (TCH).
“Our clients are increasingly focused on improving the end-user experience of their own customers, with integrated, multi-channel solutions that offer more choice and convenience with flexible payment options and simplified user experiences,” said Michael Fossaceca, North America Region Head, Citi Treasury and Trade Solutions. “We are pleased to provide these new capabilities that can be implemented quickly and can immediately add value to their customers.”
Read more at The Green Sheet

Closing Bank’s Innovation Gap with Fintech Partnerships

BY SCOTT GOLDTHWAITE ON NOVEMBER 14, 2021
Let’s face it: Banks aren’t naturally set up to innovate. To come up with the next great idea, companies have to be prepared to move fast and break things. Banks are intentionally designed to prevent this kind of behavior. They are sturdy and layered in security and approvals, and for good reason—we need the backbone of our financial system to be stable and reliable.
Still, banks have to respond to changing demands from their customers, from consumers to multinational businesses. Due to Covid-19, consumers and companies alike now expect to be able to conduct more banking and financial tasks electronically. And banks need to be able to respond to these demands quickly and efficiently. A mutually beneficial partnership This expansion of expected services works to banks’ advantage. It presents openings to capitalize on the close relationships they already have with their customers. For example, bank clients may already be fully integrated with the bank’s systems. What’s more, they often look to banks as trusted advisors who have the expertise and resources to help them navigate a variety of financial challenges and opportunities…Read the Full Article.

BOSTINNO’S 2021 INNO ON FIRE Award Winner

BOSTINNO’S 2021 INNO ON FIRE

“Today, we’re honoring the companies that were on fire in 2021, raising money, growing their firms, bringing in new customers, launching new products and boosting Boston’s ecosystem.

Fintech: A volatile economy didn’t stop these startups from gaining traction.

Aliaswire: Aliaswire, which provides digital payment and credit solutions for businesses and financial institutions, was pointed in the right direction this year. The firm doubled its employee headcount in the last 12 months and is on track to double its revenue in 2021, while multiplying its number of payment transactions by seven year over year. Aliaswire also picked up $6 million in venture funding in June, the first such investment in its history, and brought on industry veterans to join its board and executive team.”

Solving the SMB Credit Crunch

According to Mercator Advisory Group, 64% of small and medium businesses (SMBs) report having financial challenges. Additionally, 69% have used personal funds and personal credit to meet those financial challenges.

Financing has always been a challenge for SMBs, and COVID-19 has only exacerbated that problem. According to the Biz2Credit Small Business Lending Index, overall loan approval rates in December 2020 were down over 50% vs. December 2019. Big banks only granted 13% of small business loan applications vs. 28% in December 2019. Over the same period, small bank lending dropped even more dramatically, from 51% of loan requests to just 18%.

There are a lot of reasons for the sharp decline. A number of small businesses were hurt badly by the pandemic and likely determined too risky in the current environment. In other cases, small business owners simply lack a proper credit history or suffer from poor credit ratings from the past. Either way, they can’t get access to the credit they need—either in the form of loans or business credit cards— to maintain and grow their business.

The problem is traditional credit issuers are ill-equipped to meet the needs of small businesses. For one, they are overly risk-averse and they try to manage that risk with irrelevant data, passive processes, and stale credit monitoring that does not accurately reflect a small business’ true credit worthiness. As a result, issuers push small businesses to low revenue/low risk pre-paid debit cards which require personal guarantees or expensive revolvers. Other options such as Buy Now, Pay Later-type solutions for businesses can increase short-term buying power, but they also come with high fees and do little to help build credit lines for the longer-term health of the business.

Small businesses require more flexible financing alternatives that are better suited to their specific needs and set them up for long-term success and financial independence rather than continuous struggle and revolving debt. They need tools that enable them to use their cash flow and credit more easily instead of putting up barriers that restrict their options.

For example:

Eliminate personal credit scores and guarantees from the process. Evaluate the credit worthiness on the business, revenues, capital requirements and cash flow.
Offer small businesses a credit vehicle that combines a credit card with a line of credit.
Consolidate the small business’s spending on that card and integrate it with the merchant’s credit card processing system to make managing cash flow automatic and easy.
Let merchants designate a portion of their daily settlement to be deposited into their credit account and automate those deposits.
Make those funds available to the merchant immediately to effectively run and invest in their business.
Automate daily deposits to the card and eliminate the need to worry about paying bills monthly and keep interest fees that cut into merchants’ bottom line to a minimum, even zero with regular settlements.
This approach helps small business owners avoid relying on personal credit cards, high interest term loans and merchant cash advances or personal assets to fund their business. It allows them to use their personal credit more efficiently and avoid amassing personal debt that could create credit issues and affect their ability to make future personal and business investments. By consistently paying off or paying down their balance, they can build their credit without incurring more and more debt. It also builds up a cash reserve that can then be used when an emergency need arises.

Small businesses face unique credit and cash flow challenges that need to be addressed with innovative thinking. We can’t solve the problem by trying to retrofit traditional tools. That has been proven over and over again.

Eugene DeSilva is the General Manager, Small Business Credit Solutions and PayVus for Aliaswire, Inc., a Massachusetts-based fintech company that works with banks and businesses on digital payments and credit. Eugene has over 25 years of experience in the global payments industry working with small and mid-size businesses at MasterCard, American Express and CIBC.

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MPC announces keynote speakers

MPC21, the Mobile Payment Conference, is being held August 17th – 19th this year in Phoenix, AZ. 

MPC recently announced event highlights and the speaker lineup  for their 2021 Digital Commerce Event.

Scott Goldthwaite, President of Aliaswire, has been announced as a keynote speaker.

Scott will be speaking about new Banking and Fintech solutions for financial institutions and their commercial clients.

Read full The Green Sheet article.