So, Sepa is obviously a big deal for the banking delegates here at EBAday but the corporates in attendance are a little less enthusiastic.
Andreas Nestler, head of cash and treasury management at Austrian construction giant Strabag is certainly not in any rush to get it implemented. During the panel discussion on the corporate perspective on payments, Sepa elicited a shrug of the shoulders
- if it happens fine but he's in no rush.
The problem is simple: there's no incentive for corporates to switch from legacy systems. The current arrangements may not be perfect but they're not bad and switching won't make life any easier or save money.
The technology costs involved are also a consideration, especially when times are tough. A question from the floor, posed by a tech vendor, asked if corporates couldn't use Sepa to improve their IT and therefore STP but Nestler didn't buy the argument.
The problem with trying to get corporates more involved is clearly a tough one and Nestler doesn't know how banks can "make the bride prettier".
This means, the panel all agree, a
deadline for migration is essential - if you can't make the bride prettier you need grab the groom and march him down the aisle.