Sepa still looms large for UK corporates - survey

Sepa still looms large for UK corporates - survey

Ensuring compliance with changes in payments regulation, such as the migration to Sepa and the PSD, remains a priority for 40% of UK corporates, according to a survey from Experian.

The poll of payment professionals at 54 firms shows that although the majority (67%) of large UK-based organisations are primarily focused on improving business efficiency and reducing cost over the coming six months, payments regulation is forcing its way onto the corporate agenda.

Finance companies are most focused on complying with upcoming payments regulation (53%), while 26% of the insurance firms questioned are making it a priority to become compliant by the end of the year.

Around a third of corporates polled are planning to make use of the Sepa Direct Debit service in the next twelve months, a figure Experian suggests indicates that firms are now far better informed about the initiative and its value to their businesses.

However, this is contradicted by a recent critical paper on the Sepa Direct Debit scheme from the Payment Systems End User Committee (EUC), which concluded that businesses have little incentive to switch to the new payments instrument.

The paper warned that the whole Sepa plan could be doomed to failure unless payment systems end users are more widely consulted.

Jonathan Williams, director, product development and strategy, Experian Payments, says: "While most corporates involved in the migration to the pan-European Direct Debit scheme would admit that it has not been a smooth path to tread, Sepa does create direct business opportunities for these organisations."

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