Viewpointe today announced First Horizon (NYSE: FHN) and SunTrust Banks, Inc.(NYSE: STI) are now electronically clearing check payments through Viewpointe's ImageShare image exchange capability.
The unique service enables financial institutions to electronically share check images and related payment data. As a result, First Horizon and SunTrust will be among the first banks in the industry to benefit from Check 21 legislation by increased processing efficiencies and offering innovative new products and services to their customers.
First Horizon and SunTrust are the first banks to electronically clear items through Viewpointe's ImageShare service. Both First Horizon and SunTrust are utilizing the NCHA (The National Clearing House) to settle the transactions.
"First Horizon is excited to be at the forefront of this payments transition," stated Taylor Vaughan, SVP of First Horizon. "By clearing checks electronically, we can now offer our clients new services like faster payments, more convenient deposit with remote deposit service, and fraud reduction technology. We anticipate growing the number of checks shared and exchanged electronically through Viewpointe."
"This milestone was a crucial first step for SunTrust in adopting full image exchange with Viewpointe," stated Tim Sullivan, EVP and CIO of SunTrust. "Clearly the shift from paper clearing to check image exchange dramatically improves the efficiencies of the U.S. payments system and creates opportunities for enhanced products and service for our customers."
The Viewpointe Users Group, an association of Viewpointe's 10 customer banks, played a vital role in the ImageShare implementation for First Horizon and SunTrust.
Ms. Tammy Krapf, VP of First Horizon and an instrumental contributor to the Viewpointe Users Group stated, "In terms of check image exchange, First Horizon would not be where we are today if not for our collaboration with our peers in the Viewpointe Users Group."
Mr. Sullivan added, "We've accomplished a great deal by working with our Viewpointe peer banks on a regular basis. Together we have been able to create solutions to many of the technical and operational unknowns that face the industry in the transition from paper to image."
Viewpointe was created to be the catalyst to rapidly transform the paper intensive check payment operations into an electronic payments business. ImageShare is Viewpointe's unique model that takes the benefits of image exchange - lowered processing costs, reduced fraud risk, speedier payments - one step further. Sharing eliminates the need to electronically ship images back and forth, cutting the costs associated with image exchange in half. With ImageShare, storage and telecom costs are minimized and disaster recovery is built into the Viewpointe archive so each customer is also a trusted exchange partner in the industry.
"First Horizon and SunTrust have been outstanding partners, willing to push the envelope with us, be the first banks to participate in ImageShare, and share their 'lessons learned' with members of the Viewpointe Users Group," stated John Lettko, chairman and CEO for Viewpointe. "By taking early advantage of Check 21 and ImageShare, First Horizon and SunTrust are demonstrating clear leadership in the payments arena."