The news that ING and Atos are partnering to provide Sepa-compliant payment services to both banks and coporates followed a report released last week which stated that corporates are still very cautious and sceptical about the Sepa project.
The research, released by Celent, points out that corporates "were never invited at the table to put forward their instances and concerns" and this has, in part, led to the current situation where the level of "attention and acceptance" of Sepa by corporate
users is "very little - almost nonexistent".
Celent says the lack of "adequate incentives" from banks to shift to Sepa-related products underlines their inability to promote the initiative. But corporations are also refraining from taking any step beyond the minimal requirements for compliance until
a clear business case is put foward.
This echoes research released last year by CapGemini, ABN Amro and The European Financial Management & Marketing Association (Efma) which found that Sepa will fail unless regulators provide incentives to public administrations
and corporations to adopt the new payments instruments.
Patrick Desmares, secretary general of Efma, said domestically-focused corporations are reluctant to work towards Sepa implementation as they feel it should be the responsibility of banks and regulators to fulfil their business requirements.
Desmares said incentives are therefore vital to encourage coroprates to act.
The role of corporates in the future of European payments will be the focus of this year's EBAday conference. More than 400 representatives from banks and 200 corporates will convene at the Marina Congress Centre, Helsinki, on 25-26 June, to discuss ways
in which both banks and corporates can prosper the single euro payments area.
You can register for the event and get the latest updates on the speaker programme and agenda