ANZ, Barclays, and Bank of Montreal are to merge their trade finance back office operations in a joint venture with American Management Systems. The banks will contract out their trade services operations to a newly-created company which will also promote the service to other banks.
The new company will operate an Internet-based trade portal solution for banks and their corporate customers to initiate and track their trade services transactions online.
The partners say the company will provide leading edge trade processing capabilities and technology at a lower cost than their present in-house capabilities.
Banks using the service will retain full control of their customer relationships, say the joint venture partners, whilst sharing an improved, lower cost processing center. In all cases, corporate customers will continue dealing directly with, and be serviced by, their own bank's trade services specialists, but will also have access to the latest Internet-based tools for initiating and managing their trade transaction requirements.
The company will be independent of the four partner organisations, with its own management team, and will use a purpose-built technology platform from AMS.
Jeffrey Orr, chairman and CEO of BMO Nesbitt Burns and vice-chairman, investment banking group, Bank of Montreal says: "Our corporate and commercial customers across North America want faster, electronic based means to facilitate and settle international trade transactions. This new venture will help us meet the demands of both importers and exporters."