by Thomas Dolenga, Head of Cash Management Product Development, UniCredit
Digitalisation has already given rise to a number of valuable tools designed to raise the speed, safety, and efficiency of treasury operations. And as new technology companies encroach on the transaction banking market, competition is triggering further innovation – promising an exciting future for corporate treasurers.
As we enter 2016, the world is abuzz with enthusiasm for the potential of digitalisation. Digital tools are simplifying life for treasurers around the world, and the emergence of competition in the transaction banking market is bringing with it the promise of new and more powerful innovations.
Corporates are already feeling the influence of digital technology, with the Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA)’s ISO 20022 format now standard in Europe. Meanwhile, the Bank Payment Obligation (BPO) – a digital means of bank-mediated trade settlement – has been heralded as a transformative tool for its ability to combine rapid processing with robust risk mitigation, as well as its potential to improve trading relationships and resolve difficulties with payment terms. But the rate of digital innovation is set to shift gears. The reason? Competition.
Specialist technology companies are entering the transaction services space, offering their own platforms for corporate transactions – often faster and cheaper than previously available equivalents. Meanwhile, other innovations, such as cross-bank bidding platforms, now enable corporates to pit banks against one another in order to secure transaction services at better rates.