The Green Sheet Online Edition
December 11, 2017 • Issue 17:12:01
Modernizing AR with virtual credit card payments
Billtrust, a payment technology service provider, created Virtual Card Capture, a modernized business-to-business (B2B) accounts receivable solution. The cloud-based service enables merchants to pay vendors with stored, tokenized credit cards and one-time use virtual cards. Designed to improve efficiencies, the system replaces paper-based remittances and manual back-office processes with an advanced, Payment Card Industry (PCI) Data Security Standard (DSS)-compliant framework, Billtrust representatives stated.
"With the increasing popularity of virtual cards in the B2B market, we're solving what is quickly becoming a very critical pain point for [accounts receivable] teams – one that impacts their cash flow, customer satisfaction and operational efficiency," stated Flint Lane, Chief Executive Officer at Billtrust.
Nick Babinsky, the company's Director, Business Development, said, "Billtrust replaces manual entry of credit card data with a touchless process that embeds payments within remittance files, optimizing Level II and Level III interchange and ensuring PCI DSS compliance."
Merchants in the B2B sector can reduce interchange rates by capturing additional data fields within a credit card transaction. Billtrust Virtual Card Capture was created to automatically populate this transactional data, eliminating manual keying and accelerating payment acceptance. In addition to enabling B2B merchants to qualify for Level II and Level III interchange rates, these PCI-compliant solutions replace previously manual reconciliation processes, Babinsky noted.
Company representatives also listed the following additional features and benefits of Billtrust's Virtual Card Capture:
- One-time use cards: The solution supports one-time cards created by issuers. These payment methods are designed for specific invoices, events and transactions.
Dedicated virtual cards: Merchants can assign a payment card to a specific vendor to improve efficiencies and mitigate risk.
- Tokenized and vaulted: The solution enables merchants to remove payment card data from scope by tokenizing and remotely storing the data in a vault instead of on their servers.
- Push card notifications: Fully automated vendor payment files can be uploaded directly to a payment card issuer's website, eliminating the need to send payment files to an intermediary or printer.
- Email integration: Billtrust Virtual Card Capture software interfaces with email sorting, efficiently mapping to thousands of invoices across an enterprise. These emails can be sorted and mapped to invoices, with full or partial card numbers, and sent to suppliers.
Visa STP integration
Billtrust partnered with Visa Inc. to add Virtual Card Capture capabilities to Visa's Straight Through Processing (STP). The companies said the integration has further enhanced Visa's accounts receivable solution. Visa STP merchants initiate commercial card transactions from their accounting systems. Visa can now route payments made to Billtrust suppliers directly to Billtrust. Billtrust processes the transactions and deposits funds into vendors' bank accounts on the next business day, company representatives noted.
Taira Hall, Vice President, US Partnerships and New Initiatives at Visa, said partnering with Billtrust has solved key pain points in the B2B sector. "Collaboration with leading partners like Billtrust helps our financial institution clients streamline the B2B payments process for their commercial customers, better support supplier needs, and simplify the process suppliers have to go through in order to accept a payment," she stated.
Lane added, "The integration of Visa's Straight Through Processing and our Virtual Card Capture enables suppliers to more expediently manage a traditionally manual, cumbersome payment process." Babinsky said he expects the program to rapidly scale in the B2B sector, due to its two-pronged value proposition, described as follows:
- Lower interchange rates: In addition to automatically routing and consolidating remittances, the partnership enables B2B merchants to qualify for Visa's exclusive STP rates. "Any merchant who signs up will have access to Visa's STP rates," Babinsky said. "Merchants can enroll their buyers and bring STP to the masses."
- Enable push payments: The solution has the ability to push payments to merchants, so banks no longer have to send emails. "A bank can add Virtual Card Capture to an STP-enabled merchant and automate settlement," Babinsky stated.
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