A newly announced partnership between institutional payment orchestration platform Paydock and Australia’s Commonwealth Bank (CBA) will give merchants in Australia the ability to offer their customers a range of new payment options. This new flexibility comes courtesy of PowerBoard, which provides a dynamic payments experience to customers via API, without requiring businesses to make major changes to their existing payments infrastructure.
“Our partnership with CommBank sets a global precedent for financial institutions,” Paydock CEO and founder Rob Lincolne said. “It shows not only how banks can bring flexible payment strategies to customers in record time with payments orchestration, but also it establishes a new paradigm whereby banks can become more competitive and deliver more value by working with fintech players.”
PowerBoard will make it easier for CBA to deploy the latest payment methods, types, providers, and processors to merchants. CBA General Manager of Merchant Solutions Karen Last noted growing customer interest in new payment options. In a statement, she highlighted alternatives such as account-to-account payments, digital wallets, and Buy Now Pay Later as reasons to pursue the partnership with Paydock.
“PowerBoard makes it significantly easier for Australian merchants to offer choice to customers and manage their payments ecosystems, without all the costly integrations,” Last said.
Headquartered in London, Paydock also maintains an office in Sydney, Australia. The company has raised $31.8 million (£25 million) in funding according to Crunchbase. This capital came in the form of a Series A investment in May that was led by IAG Silverstripe.
Commonwealth Bank of Australia is one of the top 50 banks in the world. Founded in 1911, CBA became a fully private bank in 1996. The institution is part of the “big four” of Australian banks, along with the National Australia Bank (NAB), ANZ, and Westpac. CBA had total assets of 1.2 trillion AUD as of 2022.
Speaking of Commonwealth Bank, the institution also announced this week that Bendigo Bank and fraud monitoring firm Satori will pilot CBA’s NameCheck technology. Launched this spring, NameCheck is built to prevent scams and mistaken payments. According to the bank, the solution has prevented more than 10,000 scam payments and reduced mistaken payments by more than $100 million, to date.
“With scams and fraud costing Australians and businesses billions of dollars annually, it’s clear a whole of ecosystem response is needed to combat this problem,” CBA Group Executive Business Banking Mike Vacy-Lyle said. “We are proud to be able to extend our industry-leading technology to others and contribute to protecting more Australians against cyber criminals.”
NameCheck leverages advanced technology and CBA’s access to payment data to help establish the accuracy of account credentials. Bendigo Bank will integrate NameCheck into its Up app. Financial fraud monitoring company Satori will also take advantage of the technology.
“We are excited to work with CBA and extend the NameCheck service to our corporate customer base to complement the existing AI driven financial controls monitoring service driving operational efficiency and preventing fraud,” Satori Executive Director of Growth Mark Bookatz said.
Founded in 2002, Satori is headquartered in Sydney, Australia. The company has more than 200+ customers in the APAC region who rely on its automated transaction monitoring services. These firms include Afterpay, Qantas, and Volkswagen Group.
The Australian government’s plans to regulate Buy Now Pay Later services are having a hard time keeping up with public enthusiasm for the payment option.
This week, the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) shared results of a survey that indicated a significant increase in use of Buy Now, Pay Later services. The specific demographic was individuals between the ages of 18 and 39. The survey showed that more than 40% of those in this cohort had used BNPL services in the past year. The survey, which had almost 1,000 participants, also noted an overall increase in the number of people using BNPL. Incorporating data from a Reserve Bank of Australia research paper from 2022, the RBA determined that there has been an increase of 8% in adult BNPL use since 2019.
Designing a regulatory framework for Buy Now Pay Later services in Australia has been on the government’s to-do list since the spring. The goal is to bring BNPL under the umbrella of existing credit regulations, including credit license requirements, and minimum standards on conduct, services, and products. This also includes mandating that BNPL companies conduct credit history checks. Overall the regulations, which will treat BNPL services as conventional lending products, are seen as among the toughest proposed.
But the rollout has hit a snag. The RBA has announced that the new regulatory framework for BNPL will arrive next year rather than at the end of 2023 as originally planned. The reason for the delay was “resourcing pressures” on the government’s legislation writing team. And while this will likely give New Zealand regional bragging rights over its larger neighbor when it comes to adoption of BNPL regulations, the impact of the delay on the Australian BNPL market should be slight.
Here is our look at fintech innovation around the world.
Latin America and the Caribbean
- Latin America-based fintech Clara launched its new payment account in Brazil this week.
- ACI Worldwide partnered with Mexican fintech Mexipay.
- Payroll automation specialist Somapay teamed up with software accounting firm Fortes Tecnologia to launch FortesPay in Brazil.
- Taiwanese software company TPIsoftware teamed up with digital lending platform provider HESFinTech.
- Airo, a branch of CP Global Fintech Solutions went live as Malaysia’s first actively managed digital investment platform.
- JuanHand, an online lending platform based in the Philippines, inked a loan channelling partnership with SeaBank.
- Microlender Ezra teamed up with Kacha Digital Financial Services S.C. and Global Bank of Ethiopia to launch a digital lending service in the country.
- South African fintech Stitch launched its Pay with Crypto feature.
- Electronic Payments International looked at the role of bank/fintech partnerships in Africa’s financial services industry.
Central and Eastern Europe
- UniCredit announced an investment in German embedded lending provider Banxware as part of the company’s latest funding round.
- Swiss fintech Brighty App launched its B2B payment platform, Brighty Business.
- Austria-based crypto investing platform joined alternative investment platform Altify.
Middle East and Northern Africa
- eToro secured approval from the Financial Services Regulatory Authority of the Abu Dhabi Financial Markets Authority (ADGM) to operate in the UAE.
- Liva Insurance partnered with Oman Arab Bank.
- American Banker looked at the plight of fintech workers in Israel during the conflict with Hamas (subscription required).
Central and Southern Asia
- Indian fintech Kiwi, which offers credit cards with UPI, raised $13 million in Series A funding.
- Pakistan-based agri-fintech company Digitt+ won full commercial approval by the State Bank of Pakistan.
- Scapia, an Indian fintech that offers a credit card optimized for travelers, secured $23 million in funding funding.
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