This week's look at payment rail innovation is all about value-added offerings on existing rails, as well as on emerging real-time payment schemes.
In the U.S., Nacha noted that as ACH volume increases as a result of the pandemic, Same Day ACH is similarly on the rise. Meanwhile, ACI Worldwide is introducing overlay services to its real-time payments offering for financial institutions (FIs), and in India, the nation's new real-time payments system UPI was recently targeted for enhanced recurring payment capabilities.
PYMNTS rounds up the latest in enhanced faster payments initiatives below.
ACH Volume Spikes Amid Pandemic
With the global pandemic presenting a major opportunity for accelerated electronic payments adoption, Nacha has released new data on ACH payments adoption, noting ACH volume in the U.S. grew 7.9 percent during the year's second quarter compared to the same period in 2019.
The stats reflect "the use of the ACH Network to deliver economic assistance to individuals and businesses, as well as an acceleration in the shift from paying by paper check to paying electronically," Nacha said in its announcement, adding that 6.6 billion ACH Network transactions were recorded during the quarter for a total value of $14.7 trillion.
Direct deposits via ACH increased 17 percent, with the rise partially attributed to federal relief programs, Nacha noted.
Same Day ACH volume spiked 37 percent year over year, hitting 81.6 million transactions, with average dollar amounts for Same Day ACH increasing by 33 percent.
"ACH Payments are for every day," said Jane Larimer, Nacha president and CEO. "As people, businesses and governments adapt to new conditions, they can rely on the ACH Network to deliver pay and benefits on time, to pay their bills and so much more."
ACI Worldwide Enhances Real-Time Payments Offering
ACI Worldwide recently announced the rollout of overlay services to enhance its real-time payments offerings for FIs, according to a recent press release. The company said a partnership with Mindgate Solutions will introduce overlay services that provide banks and other FIs and service providers with white-labeled solutions to enhance their existing real-time payment offerings to corporates and consumers.
The overlay services enhance ACI's existing UP Real-Time Payments solution and can support value-added tools like QR code payments, merchant-initiated transactions, integration into merchant mobile applications, and peer-to-peer payments based on user emails or phone numbers.
"The global real-time payments landscape continues to evolve rapidly, with enhanced customer experience sitting at the heart of this transformation, aided by regulatory mandates and new technologies," said Craig Ramsey, ACI Worldwide head of real-time payments, in a statement. "Today's consumers increasingly expect a seamless payment experience across multiple channels — whether it's through social media, physical point of sale or eCommerce.
X-Border Embraces ISO 20022 for B2B
In a new report released by Juniper Research, analysts found that B2B cross-border payments value will hit $35 trillion by 2022, despite a low of $27 trillion recorded in 2020, with volumes suppressed as a result of the pandemic.
Researchers noted that as cross-border B2B payments volume increases, opportunities for faster and real-time payment rails to facilitate such global transactions will grow. Instant payments are expected to account for 9.3 percent of B2B payments in 2022, up from 6 percent 2020. Yet low transaction limits for various real-time payment schemes are limiting uptick for B2B transactions, researchers warned.
The biggest opportunity for real-time B2B transaction adoption lies in schemes' embrace of ISO 20022.
"Instant payments schemes are built on ISO 20022, which unlocks additional messaging capabilities," said research author Nick Maynard in a statement. "These can be used to inject transparency and build new services such as automation, which will add significant value to complex accounts payable processes."
India's UPI Enhances Recurring Payments
With India's Unified Payments Interface, it's real-time payment network, now in full-swing, innovators continue to introduce value-added solutions to the scheme. This week, Mumbai National Payment Corporation of India (NPCI) launched UPI AutoPay for recurring payments, a feature that enables customers to allow recurring payments via UPI to pay an array of recurring payments, including utility bills or loan payments.
The application will also provide hers with the ability to create, approve or modify their recurring payments. NPCI said several FIs have already gone live with the application, including Axis Bank, HDFC Bank, and ICICI Bank.
Accredited Standards Committee X9 Focuses on Real-Time Payments
The Accredited Standards Committee X9, a non-profit to develop international financial services standards through ISO, announced that it will expand the scope of its focus to now include faster and real-time payments. As a result, the Committee, known as ASC X9, will explore the impact of real-time payments within corporate banking.
As entities like the Faster Payments Council, SWIFT, the Federal Reserve and The Clearing House introduce faster and real-time payments solutions, the committee will explore how to promote ISO 20022 payments messaging standardization across new real-time payment systems to support enhanced corporate banking and B2B payments services.
Unified Payments Integrates Cards, ACH Into Salesforce
Accounts receivable (AR) solution provider Unified Payments Group is integrating its payments acceptance application within the Salesforce AppExchange, enabling sellers using the Salesforce platform to integrate ACH and card payment acceptance within the portal.
"It is important to our team at Unified that we embrace those efficiencies and bring that same mindset to the world of B2B payments," said Unified Payments CEO John Perez about the opportunity of integration to enable seamless transacting. "We believe that our cloud-based credit card acceptance and ACH integration will increase the value of the Salesforce experience for their customers, too."
He added that merchants using Salesforce can streamline order-to-cash processes as a result of the expanded payments acceptance capabilities.