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For international students and their benefactors, sending money across the world can be particularly fraught, with both real and perceived complications. It requires a lot of trust, and the nerves won’t fully subside until the student is sitting in the lecture hall on the first day of term.

To look after students and the people who support them during this process, there are several pillars educational institutes can follow to remove payment friction and improve the overall experience.

1. Create a single sign-on and integrated portal for all student payment requirements

Payment portals should be fully integrated with the payment experience

We’ve all had that feeling of purchasing something online, and when we go to pay, we are suddenly brought to a new page with branding we haven’t seen up to that point. It immediately raises our suspicions that something untoward is happening, and the word ‘scam’ starts bleeping on our radar.

This is the same for students who pay their tuition or accommodation fees and are bounced around different websites to complete the payment.

Educational institutions should ideally have a single portal for students to complete every part of the payment process. By centralizing how you handle international payments in a way that integrates with your Student Information System (SIS), you’ll foster much greater trust with students and their families. All data will be in a single source, resulting in clearer confirmation to the payers and fewer queries to your team.

2. Provide multiple payment options

Being able to choose from multiple payment options is an important part of the user experience

Everyone has their preferred method of payment. People often get locked in fairly early on how they spend their money, and it’s important to have that wide variety of options for people so they can pick the way they know and trust.

Again, it’s important here to integrate these payment methods within your payment portal. Fortunately, this solution is achievable through modern APIs and integration tools. It helps keep all the data streamlined for a smooth payment process for both the student and the educational institute.

3. Ensure payments are secure and compliant

Remaining compliant is key for protecting the institution and building trust with students

Providing multiple payment options goes hand in hand with making sure payments are compliant and regulated. Global financial crime and international student mobility are becoming more intertwined as criminals become savvier, and the education industry is open to money laundering risks, particularly through cash payments, refunds, and 3rd party payments.

Modern payment systems use the latest technologies to detect and prevent fraud before they pass through the system. They also have the advantage of having a larger global footprint than many of the largest banks, meaning they have embedded local rules in their systems when payments pass through certain countries.

This technology can be integrated directly into your institution’s payment portal, protecting you and providing your students with secure and regulated payments, building trust before they’ve ever set foot on campus.

4. Provide live, multi-lingual support

Students and parents want to talk to real people in their own language.

People like to talk to people when making big decisions. Even with the digital nature of our lives and the increasing sophistication of chatbots, still, our first instinct when we reach an obstacle is to pick up the phone and talk to a human being.

Providing live, around-the-clock, multi-lingual support will cut off many problems early. It will ultimately reduce queries to your team, reduce the possibility of payments going wrong, and give that trust factor to the payer that there are real people looking after them.

Removing friction from international student payments is a collaborative effort

There are many elements that go into crafting a smooth payment experience for an international student and their family. From the finance team, the marketing team, and the technology providers you work with to all of the other elements involved.

It can feel like a lot of heavy lifting, but finding the right partners, like Transact Campus, to lift some of the load will be invaluable for you and your teams. The end result is a better experience for the student, an easier workload for the administration team, and a better financial result for the institute.

Discover how Transact International Payments can improve your institution’s student payment experience today: Discover More

Los Angeles, CA, U.S.A. Dubai, UAE & Ireland, August 22nd, 2023. Global sports and entertainment agency, Paradigm Sports, has entered into a strategic partnership with TransferMate, the world’s leading B2B global payments infrastructure provider, to exclusively manage their international FX transfers.

Paradigm represents over 90 elite athletes across more than 32 countries and has negotiated over $1BN worth of contracts to date. As a multi-sport athlete representation, business venture and media platform, Paradigm has created several business ventures that are international in scope. Their businesses span across all sports-related verticals, including consumer products, well-being, fitness, apparel and sports tech.

Paradigm Sports represents athletes all over the world and, with the economic value of combat sport continuing to accelerate, they wanted to find a ‘black-belt’ partner to work on a B2B basis. They found that partner in TransferMate, whose unrivalled global payments infrastructure will enable Paradigm to transfer institutional funds at highly competitive FX rates.

Under the leadership of founder Terry Clune and CEO Sinead Fitzmaurice, TransferMate, a subsidiary of CluneTech, has built the world’s most comprehensive and advanced payments network covering more than 200 countries and territories and 140+ currencies, allowing businesses and individuals to make cross-border payments as easily as if making a domestic funds transfer.

“With the rapid trajectory of growth the sport of MMA has experienced over the last 15 years, the business opportunity around combat sports will continue to evolve even further, as it becomes mainstream in the institutional world,” said Azhar Muhammad Saul, Chief Operating Officer of Paradigm. “Our partners, much like our athletes, are global and that highlighted the requirement to efficiently manage cross-border foreign exchange flows. Transfermate provide a trusted and robust solution to allow us to facilitate that.”

“We are delighted to partner with Paradigm Sports, which has transformed the sports management industry and set itself apart as a multi-sport, media and ventures platform,” said Sinead Fitzmaurice, CEO, TransferMate. “We look forward to supporting them as FX partner across all verticals with our global payments service.”

About TransferMate
TransferMate – a subsidiary of CluneTech — is the world’s leading provider of B2B payments infrastructure as a service, enabling companies to send and receive cross-border payments faster, easier and at lower cost. TransferMate, under the leadership of Clune and CEO Sinead Fitzmaurice, has built one of the largest portfolios of payments licenses worldwide, including 51 US states and territories, to support trading in more than 200 countries and 140+ currencies. Leading banks, fintechs and software providers partner with TransferMate to offer an enhanced user experience for their business customers. The company has created bespoke integrations for banks like ING and AIB, who are also investors in the company. The TransferMate API solution allows partners to digitalize the payments flow within their software, enabling all businesses to achieve significant time and financial savings.

About Paradigm Sports
Paradigm Sports is a full-service management agency that sets itself apart as a multi-sport, business, and media platform that manages and enhances the careers of many of the top athletes on earth. As a multi-sport, business and media company, Paradigm Sports has transformed the sports management industry with the launch of successful business ventures alongside their clientele, such as Proper Number Twelve, TIDL Sport, McGregor Fast, and August McGregor. Paradigm Sports also manages the careers of some of the most prominent athletes in the world, like Conor McGregor, Rico Verhoeven, Johnny Walker, Michael Bisping, Stephen Thompson, Jozy Altidore, and Josh Tupou. Founder and CEO, Audie Attar, brokered the “Money Fight” between Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor back in 2017 which, to date, remains one of the highest revenue-generating events in combat sports history. To learn more, visit www.paradigmsports.com or follow Paradigm Sports on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and LinkedIn.

If you’d like to talk to the TransferMate partnership team, contact us here.

The partnership will strengthen 3S Money’s global reach, giving clients access to over 70 currencies

International payments platform, 3S Money, and TransferMate, the world’s leading B2B global payments infrastructure as-a-service provider, have today announced their agreement to enter into a strategic partnership.

This partnership brings together two industry leaders to revolutionise global business payments, making them faster, more secure, and more accessible than ever. The integration extends the ability of 3S Money users to make pay-outs in over 70 currencies, enabling clients to establish a banking presence in new countries and begin trading immediately.

TransferMate has built the world’s largest non-bank global payments network, using a licensed and compliance-led approach. 3S Money’s mission is to break down barriers to international trade and, through the partnership, they can easily leverage this secure and regulated network to instantly enhance their product, without any disruptions, and without the need for dual onboarding processes. 

“Our purpose is to provide businesses with one account to manage all their global payment needs enabling them to scale new markets with ease, this partnership supports that mission!” said Ivan Zhiznevsky, CEO of 3S Money. “TransferMate’s extensive payments network will enable us to access new territories and benefit from faster and more cost-effective international payments.”

“The values of 3S Money aligns with our own, making this an ideal partnership” said Sinead Fitzmaurice, CEO of TransferMate. “We want to support businesses to trade internationally with ease and remove the barriers to growth. Innovation shouldn’t be stymied by red tape, and every business from small to large should be able to access banking and payment services that are best-in-class.”

The partnership is based on API integrations between TransferMate and 3S Money, resulting in a seamless upgrade to the 3S Money platform without any disruption. It will particularly benefit 3S Money clients looking to operate in the UK, Europe, Asia, Middle East and beyond.

If you’d like to talk to the TransferMate partnership team, contact us here.

Grovara Partners With TransferMate to Vastly Lower Costs and Increase Speed of Cross-Border Payments on First B2B Online Marketplace for Export/Import

Grovara, the exports and imports wholesale marketplace for consumer brands, and TransferMate, the world’s leading provider of B2B payments infrastructure as a service, today announced a strategic partnership to slash the cost of international payments by up to 85% for Grovara’s rapidly expanding user base

A U.S.-based online marketplace, the partnership enables Grovara’s brands to receive frictionless payments from nearly anywhere in the world, utilizing a fully automated payment request process, end-to-end reconciliation, and real-time reporting and visibility. TransferMate’s international receivables solution reduces the time for payment to clear from up to three days to same-day or next-day.

Grovara has made overseas payments as easy and cost-effective as a domestic funds transfer. With TransferMate, this can be done in multiple currencies, faster and more securely than traditional banking methods, and with complete transparency of the transaction to the point of final reconciliation.

“Grovara is offering a truly integrated payment platform in which brands and buyers can rely on the amount billed equaling the amount received, making export/import transactions less complex and more transparent and secure,” says Grovara CTO, Chris Nelson. “This is a milestone integration that delivers an unprecedented level of confidence to our users while eliminating unnecessary financial risk.”

Traditional cross-border payments are made via international wire transfer, which requires a buyer to take an invoice to their bank or log on to their online banking and send an international wire via their bank account and routing numbers. This method is subject to both high bank fees and foreign exchange rates, costing between $100 and $120 on average per transfer, and can take up to three days to complete. Buyers are at the mercy of fluctuations in foreign exchange rates, which can swing wildly depending on the day and the bank. 

TransferMate, which boasts the most comprehensive global licensing network with a resulting banking network spanning more than 200+ countries and territories and 140+ currencies, enables international accounts payable (AP) and accounts receivable (AR) automation. Powered by TransferMate’s advanced API technology, the entire payment experience takes place within Grovara’s export/import marketplace, where users have the option to check out with a TransferMate account or as a guest. 

Grovara’s buyers, most of whom are conducting large transactions multiple times per year on its marketplace, are now able to access a complete statement of account that is up to date, whenever they choose at their convenience. This kind of visibility is unprecedented in export/import commerce. Buyers will also have increased flexibility with the ability to schedule payments or make single and bulk payments, all within TransferMate’s world-beating compliance infrastructure to proactively mitigate and manage risk.

“Our unrivaled licensing and banking networks are setting new standards of security, transparency, and speed for B2B cross-border payments,” said David Hughes, CCO of TransferMate – a subsidiary of CluneTech. “We are delighted to bring these industry-leading capabilities to this new partnership with Grovara, helping them deliver best-in-class connectivity and a new level of international payments experience to all their retailers.”

In a sentence: Delaware wanted an international payments partner to both use themselves and leverage on behalf of their Asia-Pacific customers, allowing all parties to trade more cost-effectively, efficiently, and flexibly.

About delaware

Delaware is a global organisation, 5,000 people strong, that delivers advanced ICT solutions and services, supporting its clients through business and digital transformations. They implement transformational projects using ERP and other software’s, embedding new processes and technologies within organisations work based on partnerships with SAP, Microsoft, OpenText, and Salesforce.

The Southeast Asia arm of delaware, consisting of around 600 people, carries out this same mission in the region. It has partnered with TransferMate to include the digital transformation of international payments into its value proposition for companies. They also use TransferMate for their payments and FX activities.

The Challenge

Singapore Harbour – one of the many giant trading hubs in South East Asia

Asia is a complex financial ecosystem to navigate, with nearly a dozen major economies neighbouring each other, all with separate currencies, laws, regulations, and cultures. Massive internal and external trading activities mean money and goods flow across borders with regularity, and businesses need to be adept and agile at navigating all the obstacles which that movement brings.

Delaware, and their partners, are at the centre of that navigation. Their platforms help businesses trade internationally efficiently, cutting costs and the administrative burden on financial teams.

“There is a lot of business going back and forth between China and Vietnam, Singapore and Malaysia, and all other regions. And every time that money changes hands and it changes currency, companies have to pay for it,’ said Christophe Derdeyn, Asia-Pacific Managing Director, delaware. “For us, it seemed a very logical thing to offer them a solution like TransferMate to help them optimize and circumvent these kinds of complexities that they deal with’.

“It was the speed of setting up bank accounts with addressable BICs and IBANs pretty much instantly was what really caught their attention.”

Besides those two core pillars of cost and efficiencies in the actual payments process, another clear friction point in trading for their Asian partners was the ability to set up a banking footprint in new regions and begin trading immediately.

‘Our clients would have to go through long KYC processes to open up a bank account in, say, Singapore. It meant a lot of obstacles that needed to be overcome before trading could begin. In fact, in our conversations, we thought the speed of the international payments TransferMate can deliver would be a key selling point, but in fact, it was the speed of setting up bank accounts with addressable BICs and IBANs pretty much instantly was what really caught their attention.”

The challenges delaware could solve for businesses through the TransferMate partnership were clear — cutting costs of international trade, using technology-led payment platforms to create administrative efficiencies, and allowing businesses to set up and trade within new countries easily.

The Solution

TransferMate’s global payment’s infrastructure covers 200+ countries and territores

One of the foundation stones of the partnership – and a prime reason why delaware chose TransferMate – was the regulated global payments infrastructure built up through the acquisition of 92 banking licenses around the world.

“I think the two biggest differences between TransferMate and the alternatives in the region are, firstly, you are B2B centric. The second is that you have an incredibly broad footprint, and you work with the biggest banks like J.P. Morgan and Citibank as a backbone to the service. If you look at the scale that you already have, the reach that you have as an organization, and the partners that you work with, they are of a different calibre to the other companies operating here.”

Cutting costs of international trade

This robust infrastructure allows businesses in the region to instantly leverage it as if they went through all the work of setting up a banking footprint in these regions themselves. It also allows them to move money through a proprietary, integrated network at a low cost. This is compared to sending it through several regional banks, each charging a fee and FX costs.

“We have saved 1.5% on all FX costs since the beginning of using it around six months ago.”

“We believe that there is a big opportunity, especially in Southeast Asia, and probably more so than in Europe, for companies to save big time on these international payments and money movements.  We can help companies run their regular banking operations at a much more favourable cost, cutting down on the majority of banking fees and offering better FX rates.”

Delaware uses TransferMate for international payments, and the savings are clear.

“We have saved 1.5% on all FX costs since the beginning of using it around six months ago. Banking fees have also dropped, so the total impact is quite significant. We’re using this as a real-life example to get other entities on board.”

Creating administrative efficiencies for international payments

Trading across borders, and managing multiple currencies, can be a complex and administrative-heavy task. Different systems and platforms must be used, then aligned, and then reconciled. This can lead to finance teams focusing on paperwork rather than on more productive areas.

One example area for delaware to help their clients achieve these efficiencies was for those that used SAP.

“We are an SAP integrator, so many of our customers run SAP for their back-office operations. When we talk to them, we can demonstrate that you can directly integrate TransferMate with their core ERP system. Because of the integration, they don’t really need to change their processes or systems. They can basically do what they’ve always done, but instead of selecting bank account A, you now select bank account B, which is TransferMate, to execute your payment.”

The integration between TransferMate and SAP Concur (you can read more about the partnership here) means users can automate the accounts payable process to reduce the administration workload.

“To expand that ability, delaware has developed integration components between SAP S/4HANA and TransferMate. It’s a journey that hasn’t been completed yet, but we’ve completed two integrations and are in the process of implementing a third. And, as we like to do, we’re using ourselves as guinea pigs to make sure the integration works seamlessly.”

Quickly expanding a client’s banking footprint

Kuala Lumpar, Malaysia – one of the countries covered by Global Accounts

The final piece of the puzzle was leveraging TransferMate’s global payments infrastructure to allow delaware clients to set up a banking footprint in new territories quickly and at no cost.

“When I mention this to people, they just go, “Oh, wow. Great. This is awesome.”

The solution for this came in the form of Global Accounts by TransferMate, which allows users to hold, pay and receive in 30 currencies and set up virtual local bank accounts with addressable BICs and IBANs.

“Say you’re a Singapore company, and you want an addressable account in the US. With Global Accounts, you click a button, and there you are, you have an account. When I mention this to people, they just go, “Oh, wow. Great. This is awesome.” You don’t need to go through all the KYC hoops you normally would. You just open an account, and you can start trading straight away.”

The continual process of adding more currencies from the region to the Global Accounts product is a prime target for the future.

“It doesn’t cover every single market – yet, but it’s continually improving. Malaysian Ringgit was added this year, and we already have the Japanese Yen, Hong Kong Dollar, and Singapore Dollar, so we’re getting there and Chinese Yuan is coming soon. And, of course, companies here can set up accounts in all the other countries, including all of the EU, the US, Canada, Britain, etc., and start trading locally there too.”

Delaware is already onboarding new companies to adopt TransferMate to make their international payments and international cash management more efficient.

“Some of the most interesting are in the maritime industry, which is obviously the paradigm of companies conducting international trade. We’ve started the process of doing step-by-step integration with their ERP, so in the next four to six months, all their flows will run through TransferMate. Just that sector will see 80 million dollars a year flow through the TransferMate payment rails.”

The Final Word

“Who doesn’t want to save money? Who doesn’t want a more productive payments process & adopting it as easily as opening a new bank account? Using TransferMate means keeping money in your pocket and being able to use it for something else – what company doesn’t want that?” 

To learn how TransferMate can help you make international payments more efficient, and manage multi-currencies with ease, contact the team today.

TransferMate and Barclays have announced a new collaboration that will bring an international receivables solution to the market to help UK businesses reduce transaction costs and save time.

Barclays clients’ operating in GBP will now be able to invoice their customers in their clients’ local currency in over 60+ currencies and 67 countries – receiving the payment back into their GBP account at the exact amount requested. Manual reconciliation is eliminated as all payments are automatically matched to the invoiced amount.

Easy to adopt with a simple registration and set-up process, the solution leverages TransferMate’s proprietary global payments infrastructure. It allows cross-border payments to travel through a single integrated network, and transfers to be processed like a domestic payment. This solution means receivables are more accurate and more cost-effective for everyone on the payment chain, particularly benefiting Barclays clients that operate internationally in GBP.

The solution has already been successfully piloted with Barclays higher education clients, allowing institutions to invoice international students in GBP and international students to pay the institution in their local currency.

“From manufacturing and leisure to education and healthcare, our partnership with TransferMate will enable clients from numerous industries to offer a new payment method to their customers whilst achieving reconciliation benefits and reduced banking fees for their businesses’ said Martin Runow, Global Head of Payments, FX and Digital at Barclays Transaction Banking. ‘This solution is a significant step forward for any business that trades internationally and invoices in GBP – particularly in the consumer to business space.”

“Our relationship with Barclays continues to go from strength to strength, with each organization adding real value to the other’ said Sinead Fitzmaurice, CEO of TransferMate. “This innovative solution can help Barclays customers reduce their transaction costs when receiving international payments, eliminate manual reconciliation, and always know the amount billed will be the amount received. It’s another great example of how collaboration between banks and fintech’s can improve the customer experience and redefine how money is moved around the world.”

For more information on the Barclays & TransferMate partnership, contact the team here.

In a sentence: HDI Global were looking for a partner that would seamlessly integrate with their SAP Concur system and make international payments a more efficient process.

About HDI Global

Who watches the watchmen?

Whenever a sector underpins how societies and economies work, there’s always a large industry supporting it. They ensure any economic shocks are minimally felt and reassure investors and the public that nothing will collapse no matter what pressures are put on the sector. For HDI Global, they are one of those key entities underwriting the insurance industry (literally).

Who insures the insurers? That would be HDI Global.

A truly global operation, HDI is represented in more than 175 countries, insuring companies worldwide through internationally coordinated insurance solutions. They are the type of insurers that the world economy at large relies on.

The Challenge

“All of our requests had to be typed in manually into our banking platform, which of course, opened up a lot of clicker errors”

Agnieszka Rudnik, HDI Global

The foremost challenge for the HDI Global team was a lot of administration when processing international payments within their SAP Concur platform. There was a disjointed invoice and payment approval process and a lot of manual double entry.

“All of our requests had to be typed in manually into our banking platform, which of course, opened up a lot of clicker errors, and we did have a lot of bounce-back payments because of information not matching’ said Agnieszka Rudnik, Treasurer and Vice President at HDI Global. ‘We also had to dedicate a resource to managing those types of payments. It was all very cumbersome and very inefficient; both error and fraud-prone.”

HDI wanted to eliminate that double entry and double review approval process. They wanted to tighten up and set control around their payments, creating clear reporting around what payments were made versus what payments were approved.

The old process meant lots of uploading and downloading of data across systems
The old process meant lots of uploading and downloading of data across systems

“Prior to TransferMate, our systems were unable to initiate payments upon approval, which meant that the documentation and the review process was kept separate from the actual triggering of the payment.”

This documentation separation from the process meant each request would go through a document management system. Once the review and approval had been finalized, the data had to be entered into another platform – the banking platform.

“And from there we would enter the banking instructions with the amount we wanted to pay, and then approvers, reviewers would then again have to go in, match up the information, and then release the payments. It was complicated…”

The Solution

“It made it easy because the reconciliation is done on the spot.”

Agnieszka Rudnik, HDI Global

The solution to their international payment headaches had already been built to work within the SAP Concur platform – PaymentsHub by TransferMate.

“We utilize SAP Concur, which manages both the document, the approval review, audit trail, as well as processing of payments on some level. They do not handle international payments, and this is where PaymentsHub comes in.”

With the TransferMate plug-in, that extra step of moving the data from one platform to another is eliminated.

“Once a payment is approved in Concur, it handles the upload of data into PaymentsHub. The information then appears in the platform within PaymentsHub. Once everything matches in a final review, we select the bank account we want the payments to leave, and that’s it.”

A view of the PaymentsHub platform
A view of the PaymentsHub platform

This tightening up of the payment process on one end, also resulted in time savings at the reconciliation stage.

“It made it easy because the reconciliation is done on the spot. It’s 99.9% error-free. And the reconciliations are very quick because we were able to download a report out of Concur for the day and then match it against what we are seeing in PaymentsHub.”

This reporting can be done daily, with the banking information stored and controlled within PaymentsHub. Once it’s entered once, you don’t have to reenter it.

“We are now able to dedicate a resource to reviewing, analyzing, and controlling of data rather than being consumed by data entry.”

Agnieszka Rudnik, HDI Global

Underpinning this easier-to-use process was more robust anti-fraud and error controls than ever before. The approval process meant there was always a clear line of sight on the payment, and nobody was able to manipulate data after it had been approved.

“Once the approval happens in Concur, nobody else touches the payment. The detail, the payment, or the bank instruction of the vendor. So, we know that once the payment is approved in Concur, there’s no other person touching or manipulating the data. We can trust that the amount that was approved and the vendor that was approved is the same in both systems.

Another control strengthened was the banking instructions.

“Once a change is done to any banking instructions, it has to be reviewed and approved by an admin. And once the bank instruction’s approved, it’s not changed unless a change happens. And if it does happen, then it’s noticed, and it has to be questioned.”

This tightening up of the overall process, and strengthening of the security systems behind it, allowed HDI to reallocate their resources more efficiently.

“We are now able to dedicate a resource to reviewing, analyzing, and controlling of data rather than being consumed by data entry. The system gives me a better control over what is being paid and I can review at a glance what payments are leaving our account. Our reporting capabilities have vastly improved, and I no longer have that worry that someone could change the bank instructions between the time the payment is approved and initiated. That makes a big difference.”

The Final Word

“I would recommend PaymentsHub by TransferMate to anyone using SAP Concur. It has a seamless connection with SAP Concur and, once the payment is approved, it flows flawlessly into this platform. It’s also given me greater visibility and control over our entire payment process.”

Agnieszka Rudnik, Treasurer and Vice President at HDI Global

If you’re a SAP Concur user looking to upgrade your international payments process, visit the SAP Concur App Center to begin the integration process.

Competitors or collaborators? Friends or foes?

The fintech and traditional banking sector are often portrayed as pure competitors, with fintech’s trying to supplant traditional banks and create a new financial ecosystem for consumers and businesses. The reality, though, is much more nuanced, with collaboration as common a feature as competition.

We sat down with Gary Conroy, Chief Product Officer at TransferMate, and talked about where the real differences lie, the collaborations already happening, and the next step in the relationship.

1. The Traditional Correspondent Banking System and the Fintech Alternative

Q. We’re talking today about the convergence of the traditional banking system and fintech. So, let’s get some fundamentals in place – what is the traditional correspondence banking system?

I think everyone knows the traditional banks – what you’d know as high street or commercial banks – that provide transactional services, as well as credit, mortgages, overdrafts, etc., to retail customers, from individuals to businesses and everything in between and beyond.

At its base, it’s a vast (and complicated) network that allows people and businesses to move money from point A to point B.

Q. The term ‘Fintech’s’ obviously is a broad term, so where does TransferMate fit into that sector?

You’re right, ‘fintech’ can describe a broad range of ideas, but generally fintech’s are transforming how businesses pay by building new banking infrastructure for them to leverage.

At TransferMate, our payments infrastructure is the largest non-bank network in the world, and the third largest even when you include those banks who have gone down the route of building a proprietary global financial network.

TransferMate’s global payments infrastructure covers 140+ currencies in 200+ countries

Basically, we have built new bank rails – payments infrastructure as a service at a global scale. We’ve done this by securing regulatory licenses across the globe, which in turns gives us access to local payment schemes across the world, and we’re able to integrate that in a simple interface for our customers to use.

Q. What’s the outcome of that new payment’s infrastructure?

Well, it’s important first to look at what we’re replacing. With the banking infrastructure, there is a lot of complexity – and unnecessary complexity at that. It’s made up of a vast network of connections; lots of integration points with multiple parties that has been built up over centuries.

I see the job of fintech’s as being able to abstract that complexity away.

The outcome is quicker, more transparent, and more cost-effective payments for users of that new infrastructure; and those users can range from direct customer to banks and FIs that partner with us and leverage it for themselves.

Q. How else does this new infrastructure change things?

It’s not just about the faster payment rails, but on top of that you can layer open banking, account information services, payment initiation services. You can have confirmation of payee. You can have a request to pay.

“We want to bring the same experience to business and corporate and finance users in their professional life that they’re used to in their everyday consumer life.”

So, there’s all these different value-add that you layer on top of that technology that, ultimately, allows for an easier end user experience. And one of the interesting challenges for TransferMate is that consumers are used to a relatively easy user experience in their daily consumer life.

We want to bring the same experience to business and corporate and finance users in their professional life that they’re used to in their everyday consumer life.

2. Licenses, regulations, and security

Without strong regulation underpinning financial systems, things easily break down

Q. A key part of that infrastructure is licences and regulations. How have fintech’s got permission from all these countries to operate there? Presumably there’s a lot of hoops to jump through to establish a banking presence in a country and to be able to move money in and out of it.

Absolutely. First thing to say though is that not all fintech’s are regulated, nor do all fintech’s need to be regulated.

In TransferMate, we went down the regulated route. We could’ve gone down a sponsor bank route and use sponsor banks and their licenses, and just provided the technology, but we believe there’s value in having the regulation. It shows a maturity of capability.

We have access to over 140 currencies and 200 countries. That, in turn, gives banks access to local low-value rails, be that ACH, be that instant, as well as domestic and international wire.

And certainly, as a regulated payments institution, we have both payments institution, money transmitter, and e-money licenses.

You are subject to, effectively, the same scrutiny that any organization, including banks.

Q. If a bank partners with us, do they get automatic access to those regulated regions where we’ve done the legwork?

Yes. We’re allowed to operate in those regions where we’re licensed. So, if anyone – either a bank, be they regulated, or a software platform partner or a customer – wants to work with TransferMate, we’re operating under our own license in those territories.

We have access to over 140 currencies and 200 countries. That, in turn, gives banks access to local low-value rails, be that ACH, be that instant, as well as domestic and international wire.

For the banks, who may be dealing with 20 or so of those intermediaries (which is, by the way, also very expensive to maintain all those bilateral relationships), this significantly consolidates down that number. They’ll have access into those territories they don’t have reach into today and, in doing so, will substantially reduce their costs.

Q. One thing you would associate to banking network is the security behind it. Does the infrastructure built by the fintech community have those same robust systems? Where do they differ?

I can’t speak for the fintech community, but I can speak for TransferMate.

We’ve implemented very robust systems. With all different regulators – we’ve taken the highest bar of all of those and made sure that all our anti-money laundering and transaction screening goes through the most stringent of processes.

Our job is, I believe, not just to comply with regulation, but to go above and beyond to ensure that we’re doing everything we can to ensure the integrity of the financial and payment systems.

3. Current collaborations between banks, FIs and fintech’s, and next steps

Collaboration is now a prime focus for everyone in the financial space

Q. Can you give me an example of a current collaboration between a bank and a fintech like TransferMate?

One of the more interesting ones is our partnership with Wells Fargo as a distribution partner. So, we have a receivables request-to-pay product that operates across borders and currencies. And we have white-labeled a branded version of that, which we call ‘Global Invoice Connect’, with Wells Fargo.

Their treasury management solution consultants in accounts receivable salespeople are then armed with that tool in the market to go out and sell that to their customers. In that case, the bank really needs to create nothing of their own. We’ve integrated with their systems to provide one data set for all receivables for those Wells Fargo customers. But it gives them another tool in their arsenal to go out and sell as a distribution partner.

Q. What are the next steps when it comes to collaboration between banks and fintech’s?

So, in TransferMate we’ve recently launched TransferMate Connect for banks and FIs, where we can effectively provide access to local low value clearing schemes at a global scale, thus adding capability for banks and FIs.

We believe this is a true game changer.

Through TransferMate Connect, banks and financial institutions will be able to build new cost-effective, fast, and secure payment propositions, allow their clients to set up trading capabilities in new territories quickly and at low-cost, and create or expand revenue streams generated by the funds moving through the network.

The technology allows us to talk to the bank or FI directly to onboard their clients, without us ever having to contact the end users directly. They can put out new or improved products into the market without causing friction for their clients.

Q. What will TransferMate Connect look like in practice?

We’re initially offering clients the ability to settle in around 80 currencies once onboarded (rolled out in phases), with multiple client models available to expand that ability to all 140+ currencies covered by our network.

A unique part of the proposition is the ability of banks and financial institutions to also integrate with another TransferMate product, Global Accounts, and again give their clients the capacity to leverage it for their own benefit. 

Global Accounts allows users to open local bank accounts in 29 currencies (with more coming soon), creating their own international banking network where they can hold, pay, and store currencies in a way that suits them. It significantly reduces transaction fees and FX costs for users, allows for better control over international cash flows, and exponentially speeds up the ability of a user to set-up a banking presence in a new territory.

This is a complete package, and its scope is unrivalled in the marketplace. We’re already working closely with several partners to integrate TransferMate Connect into their offering, and then it’s a matter of continuously growing and improving that complete package.

Q. It really is a case of collaboration beating out competition, isn’t it?

Exactly. The days of competition are long gone. I see a similarity in the AI debate going on right now about ChatGPT and the like replacing jobs. I heard a nice line that said ‘AI won’t replace workers, it’ll replace workers who don’t use AI’.

I see the same in the relationship between fintech’s, banks and FIs – it’s the ones who put in the effort to collaborate who’ll thrive. 

Gary, thank you very much.

If you’re a bank or FI and want to know how partnering with TransferMate can benefit you, get in touch with the team today.

The collaboration will enhance Fyorin’s proposition and global presence to provide digital business customers with a single global payments solution through TransferMate’s extensive international network

TransferMate, the world’s leading B2B global payments infrastructure as-a-service provider, and Fyorin, a financial operations platform for digital businesses, today announced their agreement to enter into a strategic partnership.

Fyorin’s payments and financial operations platform automates and monetizes the movement of money for businesses across different bank accounts, payment methods and currencies, eliminating 90% of manual work on financial operations teams. Its clients can connect Fyorin with their preferred accounting platform to automate receivables and payables, while also benefiting from tailored financial products, such as expense management tools, powered by its curated network of financial institutions.

TransferMate, a subsidiary of CluneTech, has built the world’s most comprehensive and advanced payments network, allowing businesses and individuals to make cross-border payments as easily as if making a domestic funds transfer. Supporting trading in more than 201 countries and across 141 currencies, TransferMate works faster and more securely than traditional banking methods and with complete transparency of the transaction through to the point of final reconciliation.

Through this partnership, TransferMate’s leading payments technology is integrated directly into the Fyorin platform, enabling the Fyorin ecosystem to onboard and service businesses across multiple jurisdictions. With TransferMate’s global footprint, Fyorin customers can now access a single global solution for all their receivables and payables. The deal will also position TransferMate as the partner of choice to support financial institutions across Fyorin’s network that can benefit from accessing TransferMate’s capabilities through one platform.

“We are delighted to have TransferMate joining our Fyorin ecosystem,” said Christian Joseph Agius, Co-Founder & COO, Fyorin. “Their unique global payments solution will be a huge asset to Fyorin users; both businesses and financial institutions. Fyorin’s solution cuts 90% of the manual workaround within payment operations and through our partnership with TransferMate we will continue supporting businesses in lowering their financial operations costs by maximising the global footprint they have for receivables and payables.”

“Our unrivalled licensing and banking networks are setting new standards of security, transparency and speed for B2B cross-border payments,” said Sinead Fitzmaurice, CEO of TransferMate. “We are delighted to be partnering with Fyorin to provide a single global solution for digital-first businesses to execute seamless international transactions with ease, helping them to eliminate friction in the financial processes of international trade by leveraging TransferMate’s extensive global payments network.”

For more information on how TransferMate can support your organization when making international payments, contact the team today.

In a sentence: VITA Student needed an accounts payable platform that was easy-to-use when processing student accommodation payments, provided a single source of truth, and most importantly improved the student experience.

About VITA Student

VITA Student provides students with the highest quality accommodation experience while they’re studying. Born in 2012, it’s had a rapid rise with 23 buildings across the UK under its remit, and a recent expansion into Barcelona adding to its portfolio.

With 10,000 beds to be filled each year, around 1 in every 30 students in the entire UK will be staying at Vita Student.  

The Challenge

Making the experience of paying for student accommodation needs to be seamless, or a lot of problems arise.
Making the experience of paying for student accommodation needs to be seamless, or a lot of problems arise.

Working in such a dynamic marketplace, with huge surges in demand concentrated over a few periods in the calendar, Vita Student needed a student accommodation payment platform that could:

1) Automate key functions to reduce administration time

2) Create a live ‘source of truth’ for the Vita Student team

3) Speed up and smooth out the payment journey for students to reduce any anxieties they had

“We came to TransferMate when the UK rules around debit and credit card facilities changed” said Nichola Collette-Yates, Head of Customer Engagement, Vita Student. ‘We had to make the commercial decision to completely switch off all debit and credit card facilities. The problem was… that left us with no payment system.”

This change meant that the only way a student could make payments was transferring the money directly into Vita Student bank accounts. This proved difficult for both customers and the Vita Student team alike and increased student anxiety in the run up to living with Vita Student.

Students would often pay in separate payments, rather than the full amount in one go, which made it hard to match the payment with the student. What’s more, payments made from people other than the student themselves – their parents for example – made it even more difficult to match up payments.

Being unable to confirm payments meant that students wouldn’t move through the system, and would instead be caught in limbo, causing multiple inquiries to the Vita Student team and lost bookings.

“Reconciling the money coming into the bank accounts directly was taking months at its worst point. Students were cancelling because we were querying payments with them and it was taking too long There was simply far too much manual work and it wasn’t a pleasant experience for the customer.”

This administration, manpower heavy process was costing Vita Student on the bottom line.

“As a business it was very costly to us because of the time we were spending process and reconciling payments. As well as that, we were losing bookings. We were having to cancel bookings and try to resell them at the last minute.”

The lack of automation and technology in place was also causing issues for the students.

“It was really difficult for them in that if they didn’t send enough money or there were intermediary bank charges that they didn’t know to account for said Sam Hardy, Customer Engagement Manager at VITA Student. ‘This meant we’d have to follow-up looking for further payments, further delaying everything, or writing it off as a bad debt. Of course, these mis-matched payments didn’t help with reconciliation down the line either.”

The whole process for the VITA Student team, and the students themselves, was ‘messy’ and they needed a new all-inclusive solution.

The Solution

Create a live ‘source of truth’ for the Vita Student team

Before TransferMate, the data of all student accommodation payments was held on disparate systems, and often tricky to access.

This meant multiple inquiries going several ways – students asking the Vita team to confirm their payments, and the Vita team reaching out to students to provide further information, as well as the banks. 

“It’s given us security around future payments”

“The most important thing we needed was the ability to track the payments coming in. It was about having an easy place to go and look at a student’s status and having that viewable for us. We needed to de-risk our payment process so we could see what was due to land, who hadn’t yet started that process, who was engaging, and who wasn’t. Now everything’s on the TransferMate portal.”

Ensuring payments are accepted quickly means that the students can plan with more security
Ensuring payments are accepted quickly means that the students can plan with more security

This ability to track live data has positively impacted revenue, their ability to manage cash flow, and manage bookings more efficiently.

“It’s given us security around future payments and what’s coming over the next couple of weeks. The treasury department is happier because they have a much clearer idea of what cash will be coming through the door. Combining these two factors makes it easier to make key business decisions at the right time, which helps us maximise revenue each cycle.”

Automating key functions to reduce administration time

One of the core functions of the TransferMate education payments solution is how it removes the need for disparate systems. For the Vita Student team, they were regularly pulling big data files from their banking system, and then trying to match them up in another system. Reconciliation became a tedious and time-consuming task.

“It took significant amounts of time for the accounts team to manually reconcile everything – I really felt for them! Now we can do that all pretty much instantly, matching it all against the student’s account as well.”

Now, the team don’t have to leave the TransferMate portal to get the information they need. Automation and bringing the data together in one place has made reconciliation much easier and less complicated.

“It helps us structure our efficiencies within the team. We can focus on the areas that need it, whereas before, the time spent on finance reconciliation was hindering our ability to provide the impeccable customer service levels that we aspire to.”

Speed up and smooth out the payment journey for students

An screenshot of the TransferMate payment portal for students
A screenshot of the TransferMate payment portal for students

For the student, the process became much easier to track and control from their end, with a simple portal they could access to get all the information they needed. The TransferMate portal also gives students more payment options than before.

“It really makes it so much smoother for the student. Firstly, it makes it really clear what they’ve got to send in their currency and what references they need to put in there and which bank account to send it to. And then there’s simple features like when they click ‘Pay Now’ the pop-up window will pre-populate the boxes with all their information, so it’s super-easy for the students to make payments.”

Payment related queries from students were reduced from 8,299 to just 211 after implementation

“The other element is that because we have to spend much less time on the payment part, we can now concentrate on delivering those value-add elements to the students. That’s a big boost for team morale as well, because suddenly were focusing on the positive stuff, and not just chasing payments.”

The results have been outstanding. While Vita Student had its biggest and busiest year in their history, payment related queries from students were reduced from 8,299 to just 211. They’ve seen a 39% reduction in emails into their inbox, and now 86% of all payments come through the TransferMate platform.

The Final Word

“One thing Vita Student prides itself on is the experience. And if the experience of even just making a payment to us is difficult, then we failed at the first hurdle. We can transact now with ease. It’s a frictionless journey for all of our students across the world.”

Nichola Collette-Yates, Head of Customer Engagement, VITA Student

To learn more about how TransferMate can support student tuition and accommodation payments, contact the team today.


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