Fundamentals Remain Key, but Issuers Must Consider Alternative Approaches to Advance Virtual Card Use by Suppliers

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New research from Mercator Advisory Group examines traditional and new methods for advancing supplier enablement

One of the 10 exhibits in this research report

While the commercial card industry continues to benefit from the ongoing shift away from cash and checks and the increase in purchase volume, vast opportunities still exist for growth in cards as payables tools.

Historical difficulties in gaining mass-scale adoption of commercial cards for use in corporate payables have been rooted in friction around pricing and technical requirements for acceptance. Issuers, buyers, and financial technology firms (fintechs) are now approaching this challenge from several angles, using the rising popularity of virtual card accounts as the catalyst for achieving the long-sought broad acceptance of card-based payments among suppliers. The commercial card industry is an integral and growing portion of the broader business-to-business (B2B) payments landscape. Mercator estimates that the overall noncash value transfer between U.S. businesses within the B2B payments ecosystem was close to $24 trillion during 2015. This includes payments by check, ACH, cards, and wires.

In a new research report, Supplier Enablement of Cards in B2B E-Payments Requires Persistence, Data and Technology, Mercator Advisory Group discusses supplier enablement, recommending fundamental approaches for success, suggesting tools to enhance suppliers’ recognition of the value proposition of B2B e-payments, and reviewing innovative business/technology trends that will have an impact on the industry.

"While the commercial card industry continues to benefit from the ongoing shift away from cash and checks and the increase in purchase volume, vast opportunities still exist for growth in cards as payables tools,” commented Steve Murphy, Director of Mercator Advisory Group’s Commercial and Enterprise Payments Advisory Service and author of the report. “There is substantial untapped potential, given the size of the market. The effort to drive further adoption of virtual cards among suppliers is one of the key activities of commercial card issuers and their corporate clients.”

Highlights of the report include:

  • A step-by-step approach for fundamental success
  • A discussion of the opportunities around driving revenue through scale versus interchange and rebates
  • Methods to overcome the continuing greatest single hurdle, suppliers’ resistance to pricing
  • A detailed review of the value proposition for suppliers
  • A review of next-generation technology driving new business approaches that allow for flexible pricing and ease of card payments

The note is 24 pages long and contains 10 exhibits.

Companies mentioned in this research note include AOC, Bora Payment Systems, Boost Payment Solutions, Comdata, Invapay
Payment Solutions, Ixaris Technologies, MasterCard, PayPal, Stripe, Visa

Members of Mercator Advisory Group's Commercial and Enterprise Payments Advisory Service have access to this report as well as the upcoming research for the year ahead, presentations, analyst access and other membership benefits.

Please visit us online at http://www.mercatoradvisorygroup.com.

For more information and media inquiries, please call Mercator Advisory Group's main line: (781) 419-1700, send email to media(at)mercatoradvisorygroup(dot)com.

Follow us on Twitter @ http://twitter.com/MercatorAdvisor.

About Mercator Advisory Group
Mercator Advisory Group is the leading, independent research and advisory services firm exclusively focused on the payments and banking industries. We deliver pragmatic and timely research and advice designed to help our clients uncover the most lucrative opportunities to maximize revenue growth and contain costs. Our clients range from the world's largest payment issuers, acquirers, processors, merchants and associations to leading technology providers and investors. Mercator Advisory Group is also the publisher of the online payments and banking news and information portal PaymentsJournal.com.

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Karen Yetter
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