Union Bank of the Philippines (UnionBank) has partnered with international payments tech provider Visa Inc. to pilot the latter’s Visa B2B Connect platform to make cross-border business-to-business transactions more seamless and easier for corporate clients.
Visa B2B Connect is a platform designed to give financial institutions a secure, fast and predictable way to process corporate cross-border B2B payments. UnionBank is one of Visa’s pilot partners in the Asia-Pacific region. UnionBank has processed bank-to-bank test transactions with Visa as it gears up for the commercial launch of Visa B2B Connect in late 2018.
Today, making cross-border corporate payments can be a cumbersome, lengthy and friction-filled process for financial institutions and their corporate clients. Using technology based on blockchain architecture, Visa B2B Connect simplifies this process by sending transactions over Visa’s network from the bank of origin directly to the recipient bank.
“We are pleased to announce that UnionBank is one of the pilot partners in Asia Pacific for the Visa B2B Connect platform. Typically, traditional cross-border transactions are archaic, time-consuming and expensive. We believe that it is important to simplify cross-border payments for small medium businesses and corporates in the Philippines. Visa B2B Connect takes on an innovative approach and eliminates friction for cross-border transactions by using distributed ledger technology to enhance the speed, security and reliability of these transactions.”
-Vikram Kshettry, Head of B2B Partnerships, Visa Asia Pacific
“UnionBank is excited about being part of the Visa B2B Connect program as it will enable our corporate and SME clients for cross-border payments in a more efficient, timely, and secure manner. Traditionally, for example, if an SME needs to pay a supplier in Brazil he would request for an electronic funds transfer from his Unionbank account to his supplier’s account in Brazil. That could take three to five days and have to pass through several other banks, and pend confirmation.”
-Justo A. Ortiz, Chairman of UnionBank
“With VisaB2B Connect, thanks to blockchain technology, the SME can initiate the transfer, receive immediate confirmation, and the supplier can get the funds the next day or in some cases, in real-time. The same works in reverse, where the SME here can get paid just as fast and efficiently from their customer abroad. This speeds up the purchase and payment process and allows the customer to properly manage his cash flow. And for SMEs, timing cash flow is very critical to their survival. Technology is tremendously empowering. We should not be afraid of it. Instead, we need to learn and embrace it. We are pleased to announce that UnionBank is the first Visa partner bank in the world to conduct a successful end-to-end pilot test transaction on Visa B2B Connect. We are grateful to have a partner in Visa who shares our passion for excellence and continuous drive for innovation,” Ortiz added.
As one of the Philippines’ leading player in the banking industry, UnionBank envisions easier and faster international transactions for its customers in the business sector. With its partnership for the pilot of B2B Connect, the Bank takes a great leap forward in cross-border payments with smart banking- and financial technology-based solutions, contributing greatly to the Aboitiz Group’s promise of advancing business and communities.