Mastercard today announces it has signed an agreement with global business integration technology leader SEEBURGER, to provide people and businesses across Europe more choice, flexibility and control across a range of next generation real-time request to pay solutions, with an initial focus on Bill Payments.
The parties will bring together Mastercard's leading request to pay-based technology with SEEBURGER’s Business Integration Suite, enabling businesses to transform their billing and collection process for end customers. The agreement includes a six-month pilot project to test and ready the solution for the market, initially across Europe.
With Bill Payments the initial focus, the collective aim will be to create significant value by: digitising the billing presentment process; digitising customer communications; presenting consumer offers; and enabling accelerated cash flows through better visibility of payment statuses. The working partnership will also look to enhance auto reconciliation, and drive efficiencies for billers by offering a digital platform for communicating directly with their customers to manage enquiries or disputes.
Enhanced Bill Payment services also offer financial institutions increased mobile application engagement by their customers and additional revenue opportunities.
Roberto Tittarelli, Executive Vice President New Payment Platforms at Mastercard, commented: "By partnering with SEEBURGER, who bring leading business payment integration technology, we can transform the bill payment experience for consumers and billers across Europe. The combination of request to pay technology and real time payments, will enable an alternative to direct debit and biller-direct models, providing more optionality for different customer segments, reducing time, inconvenience and risk of inaccuracy for payers and billers alike."
"For both consumers and billers, the payment process can be frustrating, time-consuming and costly. We are pleased to be working alongside Mastercard to help streamline and improve the process," said Ulf Persson, SVP Global Business Development for SEEBURGER. "Our ability to integrate virtually anything aligns well with Mastercard's initiative to create a better payment experience for customers."
For people with variable incomes Direct Debit type bill payments don’t always meet their needs and a more flexible approach would provide valuable options. In Europe today, seventy-nine percent of bill payers use up to three different channels to pay their monthly bills (1). According to Mastercard consumer research, 40 percent of Europeans would like to have a secure platform that allows them to view, remember and pay all bills in one place. Furthermore, 35 percent of calls into customer care centres are related to billing, and responding to enquiries is estimated to cost businesses between €6 to €12 each time (2).
Mastercard's Bill Pay solution resides within the application layer of its multi-rail proposition and connects billers to payers via their financial institutions. It enables consumers to view, manage and pay their regular household and other bills with flexibility and control. They can choose to pay now or later, in full or in instalments, using a wide range of flexible payment options including a bank account, digital wallet and card. The digital request allows consumers to view the bill detail and authorize the payment without having to enter the value or recipient's account information, saving them time, hassle, and reducing their risk of error.
By enabling payments across cards, between accounts and cash, Mastercard's multi-rail approach allows people and businesses to pay, or send and receive money how, where and when they choose.