The Green Sheet Online Edition
March 28, 2011 • Issue 11:03:02
The check's not in the mail
Roughly 80 percent of all business invoices are generated manually, according to Intrix Technology Inc. Building upon 20-years' experience as an integration consultant to merchants with a range of distinct needs, and as a payment gateway provider with strong automated clearing house (ACH) and Level III data capabilities, Intrix hopes to create a new trend with Electronic Bill/Invoice Presentment & Payment, an automated bill payment tool for larger businesses.
"We introduced it at ETA 2010," said Jeff Connors, Chief Executive Officer at Intrix. "I think we did about 10 demos, and everyone wanted to sign up for it. We then went out and did some more customization for various groups. We're not trying to be the biggest gateway. We're much more focused on the specialty markets." Target markets include the legal, dental, medical, insurance, manufacturing, distribution, association and service-based sectors.
According to Connors, two industries that required customization were health care and legal, where disputed payments and unique billing standards had to be addressed. "The legal industry has its own standards for bill presentment," Connors noted. "We made some modifications specific to that industry."
In health care, he said, an allowance was needed for patients to make payments on undisputed amounts, with disputed balances paid separately upon resolution.
Fewer touch points, faster payments
Mike Passifone, an Account Executive with Intrix, claimed that virtually all of the touch points involved with manual billing can be eliminated through automation. Instead of printing and mailing invoices manually, invoices are sent electronically. He added that, while EBIPP works for most any merchant, it begins to generate revenue for businesses that average at least 1,000 invoices per month.
The plug-and-play, software-as-a-service product allows merchants to upload invoices directly to EBIPP using their existing accounting software. Once uploaded, email notification is sent to billing recipients. "[They] actually get an email that shows them that they have a bill ready to be paid," Passifone said. "They can click on it, view the bill, and create an ACH or credit card payment right then and there."
For ISOs, automated billing not only represents an opportunity for portfolio expansion, but "from a merchant viewpoint or from an ISO viewpoint, people can pay their bills through a card or an ACH, which increases volume to the ISO," Connors added.
Flexible and tailored for branding
In addressing payment security and convenience, Passifone said, "The Intrix bill presentment and gateway work with a tokenization scheme, so they can use a token to actually apply a payment toward that same payment profile. They wouldn't have to come back in and establish or type in a card again.
"That's all set up upfront. They can also set up a payment profile where they can register on the site and have one setup as well." EBIPP is equipped to handle recurring payments, he added.
"Being a technology company that offers a gateway, we've seen customers with lots of problems who are looking to figure out how to avoid the issues of PCI, etc.," Connors said. "When we built the bill pay, we made it flexible, almost menu-like, so that a lot of people will do things differently from one another, and we try to say, check this need, and bingo, they're off to the races."
The system can also be branded. "I can make it look like the ISO's web portal, or I can make it look like the individual merchant's as well," Passifone said. "Even though it's being hosted by us, the actual customer would have no idea that it's an Intrix website."
Businesses using the EBIPP platform can generate discounts, promotional offers and marketing campaigns to increase visibility, Passifone added.
Intrix Technology Inc.
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