A partnership has been announced between Answer Pay and Partner Hub as the two companies look to improve cash flow in Europe’s €1.2billion e-invoicing market.
As the cost of living crisis increasingly bites many businesses are struggling to collect payments from their customers. Subscription numbers are declining and consumers are cancelling direct debits in favour of alternative payment methods that give them more control. However, these alternatives such as cash, cards and cheques can cost more and introduce friction with conversion typically much lower.
Instead some banks and payment service providers are offering their customers a new service, “Request to Pay”. Available from Answer Pay across the Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA) and the UK, businesses can more efficiently collect regular payments from their customers avoiding issues such as direct debit failures due to insufficient funds.
Key to the uptake of this service is an easy integration. Partner Hub takes invoice data from ERP systems and both reformats this for invoice presentation and automatically generates payment requests over the Request to Pay networks offered by Answer Pay. This abstracts any complexity in building API integrations reducing the dependency on over stretched development teams.
Katalin Kauzli, co-founder, Partner Hub, comments “Request to Pay will be a game changer for payments, but it must be easy for banks to adopt the service. With our e-invoice solution the two largest banks in Hungary were able to quickly and securely get up and running. We’re looking forward to working with Answer Pay to help banks in the rest of Europe take full advantage of this powerful combination of e-invoicing and Request to Pay.”
E-invoicing is a hot topic for many European businesses as many nations look to make them mandatory. Italy, France and Poland have already obtained authorisation from the European commission to introduce a mandate with Belgium, Latvia, Romania, Spain, Slovenia and Slovakia all commencing the process. Compliance is therefore likely to be another key driver in Request to Pay adoption.
“The pandemic created a lasting change in our willingness to engage in remote payments. The cost of living crisis will create a change in how we manage our bill payments. Add to this the drive around Europe for e-invoicing and you can see why we’re so excited to work with Partner Hub to bring to market this exciting innovation.” Added Ralf Ohlhausen, Answer Pay’s executive adviser.