Accenture (NYSE: ACN) is providing consulting, development and testing services for Viewpointe, a leading provider of check image services. Accenture is enhancing the ability of Viewpointe's image exchange platform to handle large image exchange volumes for banks taking advantage of processing benefits associated with "Check 21" legislation.
Check 21 (formally known as "The Check Clearing for the 21st Century Act") is expected to spark the broad exchange of digital check images between banks when it takes effect October 28, 2004. The legislation allows banks to clear checks electronically, rather than physically transporting paper checks -- saving the industry an estimated $2 billion annually in processing and float costs.
Viewpointe maintains a bank-shared national image archive that stores nearly 50% of all checks written in the U.S. and provides image sharing and exchange services. Image sharing is Viewpointe's unique model that takes the efficiencies of image exchange one step further. Sharing eliminates the need to electronically ship images between bank archives, significantly cutting the storage and telecom costs associated with exchange. Viewpointe also moves check images between Viewpointe banks and non-Viewpointe banks.
"Each year, Viewpointe banks store over 20 billion check images in the shared national archive and 12 billion of those are eligible to be shared or exchanged. That's 45 million images each business day," commented John Lettko, Viewpointe's chairman and chief executive officer. "Our image sharing and exchange models were proven in limited production environments in 2002; however, we asked Accenture to augment our infrastructure and platform to help maintain its integrity and operational excellence in such a high volume production environment."
"We see great potential for financial institutions to benefit from Viewpointe's archiving and check-imaging and -sharing capabilities," said Richard Winston, a partner in Accenture's Banking Industry group. "Our ongoing work with Viewpointe gives us additional insight to help banks create and implement solutions to take advantage of Check 21."