UK bank HSBC is now letting its business banking clients accept payments from customers using just a mobile phone number, through the UK’s Paym realtime mobile payments service, according to Finextra.
Paym, which was launched in April by the UK Payments Council and enables P2P payments between individuals who have bank accounts, has signed up 1.6 million users and has already transfered more than £15 million. The service uses the UK’s Faster Payments network, which allows users to initiate near-realtime transactions, and has no set limits on the value of transactions that can be sent.
But HSBC and other banks have only allowed use of the service with personal bank account holders. The expansion makes the money transfers available to 600,000 businesses with Business Internet Banking accounts. Businesses will be able to receive payments from their customers but not make payments through the system. HSBC said it is exploring the option of allowing business customers to conduct B2B and B2C payments over the service.
While the consumers using Paym are limited to one mobile phone number per bank account, HSBC will offer business clients the option of registering up to 50 different mobile numbers to receive Paym payments. The bank says this will be especially useful for businesses with larger sales forces.
While only 1.6 million UK consumers have signed up for Paym, more than 40 million bank account holders are now eligible to use the service — about 90 percent of all consumer accounts in the UK.