Mastercard has partnered HSBC to launch a product in the UK that allows businesses to use their commercial card programme to make payments to any supplier, regardless of whether the supplier accepts card payments.
HSBC will be the first issuer to launch the Mastercard Track Card to Account Transfer offering for its business customers in early 2022.
Citing separate research from CEBR and FSB, Mastercard says that during the pandemic, average payment times for large companies to pay suppliers increased to over 37 days, while the share of invoices paid later than 60 days has reached a four-year high.
As a result, 62% of small businesses say they’ve experienced either an increase in late payments or had payments frozen completely. This delay can have a significant impact on their ability to thrive, with FSB estimating that 50,000 small businesses fold each year due to late payments.
Mastercard says that the new Card to Account Transfer option will help businesses manage cash flow, eliminate manual work and expand payment options as suppliers receive card payments from buyers directly in their bank account.
HSBC customers could reduce payment friction and improve efficiency in accounts payable processes, as well as generate insights on company-wide spend to make better decisions, manage risk more effectively, and optimise liquidity and working capital.
Kelly Devine, division president, Mastercard UK & Ireland, says: “Particularly in these difficult times, it’s critically important for businesses to have flexible and dependable payment options to smooth cashflow throughout the supply chain.”
Brian Tomkins, global head, commercial cards, HSBC, adds: “This enhancement is a further step forward in the convergence of B2B Cards and traditional payments. Mastercard Track Card to Account transfer combines the security and working capital benefits of HSBC’s Virtual Cards with real-time-payments."