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Blockchain Evolves from Buzzword to Major Benefit for Payments, TD Bank Survey Finds

Vlad Poptamas

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Photo source: seekingalpha.com
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60 percent of finance professionals anticipate significant growth in faster payments in 2019

Treasury and finance professionals anticipate more operational challenges in 2019 than in previous years, according to a recent survey conducted by TD Bank, America’s Most Convenient Bank®, at the 2018 Association for Financial Professionals Annual Conference in Chicago, Illinois. The risk of payments fraud/cybersecurity topped professionals’ list of concerns, with 44 percent naming it their top operational challenge, a 14 percent year-over-year increase.

The ability to adapt to or process faster/electronic payments is an obstacle for 37 percent of survey respondents, also rising 14 percent year-over-year. This concern is likely to cause some anxiety for finance professionals, as commercial payments continue evolving. In fact, the majority (60 percent) of respondents expect to see the largest amount of growth this year within faster or real-time processing, an 8 percent increase from last year.

Despite Industry Uncertainties, Blockchain has Benefits
Unsurprisingly, technology continues to influence treasury operations, and the majority of survey respondents (90 percent) feel that blockchain/distributed ledger technology will have some type of positive effect on the payments industry.

The top impact of blockchain/distributed ledger technology is its ability to create stronger audit trails (29 percent), respondents said. Additional positive outcomes include:

  • Speeding up the payments process (22 percent)
  • Improving efficiency of cross-border payments (21 percent)
  • Reducing payments fraud (18 percent)

“Blockchain technology has broad implications for the commercial payments space, from speeding up settlements to securing cross-border transactions,” said Rick Burke, Head of Corporate Products and Services at TD Bank. “Even though much of the industry has a baseline understanding that blockchain can evolve and improve payments, the varied responses indicate that the technology’s specific capabilities and implications are still a great unknown for many finance professionals.”

Despite the hype around new innovations like blockchain, finance professionals appear to be split on the use of another technology type to facilitate payments: open APIs. Fifty percent of respondents claim that their organization currently uses or is in the process of integrating open APIs into company operations, while 49 percent do not use open APIs and nearly a quarter of that group does not have plans to do so in the future.

With so much change on the horizon, companies are investing in training strategies for several facets of treasury operations. Survey respondents said their organization has training strategies specifically for data and analytics (45 percent), AI and automation (26 percent) and blockchain (14 percent).

Fraud Casts a Larger Cloud
As the risk of payments fraud/cybersecurity threats is top of mind across the industry, there comes an expectation from 98 percent of respondents that financial institutions should assist organizations with protecting against fraud and cybercrime. More than half (55 percent) said financial institutions can help them better protect against fraud and cybercrime through education – although 48 percent of respondents admitted that their company does not have any in-house cyber fraud prevention training. Additionally, one-in-four finance professionals surveyed feel that banks should offer greater controls on transactions and 18 percent state they want risk or process reviews.

“As global fraud and cybersecurity incidents continue to rise, corporations recognize the need to bolster their protective measures and improve employee understanding of how to safeguard finances,” said Burke. “To achieve real success, organizations and their employees need to be better able to identify and deter fraud attempts. This should be a responsibility shared by businesses and their financial institutions, beginning with better education.”

Survey Methodology
TD Bank polled finance professionals at the 2018 AFP Conference held Nov. 5-6, 2018, in Chicago, Illinois. A total of 406 responses were collected from industry professionals, including business end-users and financial and technology services organizations.

SOURCE TD Bank

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Blockchain

Supply Chain Management Association Becomes Supply Chain Canada

Vlad Poptamas

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At its AGM yesterday, the Supply Chain Management Association™ announced its name change to Supply Chain Canada™. The association also launched a new website as part of an overall rebranding initiative.

“The new name and look are part of a transformation that we have undertaken as the association enters its second century,” said Christian Buhagiar, President & CEO of Supply Chain Canada. “Today’s supply chains are dynamic and fast-paced. The association for Canada’s supply chain professionals must reflect that.”

Through the rebranding process, the association has also acquired a meaningful new logo and tagline, “Professionals advancing the future.”

The logo’s maple leaf design not only conveys our nationality; it also represents the connectedness of the supply chain, illustrating the networks and collaboration that are so essential to supply chain success, and the interconnectedness of the association’s federation, institutes and members. Its connected dots can be seen, as well, as the complex route of a global supply chain.

“Professionals advancing the future” succinctly communicates both the professional status of supply chain practitioners and their forward-looking perspective. It is intended to:

  1. Elevate the perception of supply chain practitioners as professionals, acknowledging the value they bring to their organizations and to the Canadian economy.
  2. Encompass the several ways that the association and its members “advance” – in their personal careers and knowledge, and for the profession, the country and the economy.
  3. Express the future focus of the association – with its emphasis on the development of skills and policies – and of the supply chain itself, now so focused on AI, blockchain, robotics, automation and so on.

The new website, now at www.supplychaincanada.com, is enhanced with a modern look and new functionality that enables location-based content for users across Canada.

These changes are not simply style enhancements. They are part of a larger plan to strengthen the association. Supply Chain Canada consolidates the organization’s brand across the country under a single name in every province and territory, removing any possible confusion from its federation structure. “The unity that this will ensure will help us improve recognition in the sector, and thereby provide stronger leadership to the Canadian supply chain community,” said Buhagiar.

The association’s transformation began in 2018 with a new vision and mission, as well as an ambitious three-year strategic plan. The new name and rebranding announced yesterday are part of a larger evolution that will continue over the next two years with the introduction of new and revised educational offerings, new initiatives to engage with industry, more value-added membership benefits and more.

 

SOURCE Supply Chain Canada

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Export Portal to Address Best Practices in Sustainable Trade Facilitation at the Asia-Pacific Trade Facilitation Forum

Vlad Poptamas

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Export Portal to Address Best Practices in Sustainable Trade Facilitation at the Asia-Pacific Trade Facilitation Forum
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Export Portal CEO Ally Spinu will be adding her take on the alignment of trade facilitation and sustainable development goals at a session at the 9th Asia-Pacific Trade Facilitation Forum (APTFF) in New Delhi.

“The Asia-Pacific region is a wealth of unexplored opportunities which lay deep in the communities of local businessmen and women that just need support in bringing their amazing products to the world to see and buy,” Ms. Spinu said. “I am looking forward to this event and being a part of the change that will help local businesses from this part of the world sell their products globally. I deeply believe that shifting attention to developing SMEs is the major change international trade and local economies have been waiting for.”

This year’s APTFF will focus on how digital and sustainable trade facilitation measures and practices can bring prosperity in the Asia-Pacific region. The forum will investigate opportunities from trade digitalization for sustainable progress of the area and challenges ahead in materializing such opportunities. APTFF will feature panel discussions as well as interactive and informative sessions. These sessions will allow participants to share experiences and perspectives on different aspects of trade facilitation, including trade finance, cross-border eCommerce and paperless trade, transit, innovative application of emerging technologies, and more. APTFF will bring relevant regional initiatives and implementation cases to each session, making it a unique opportunity to share knowledge and practical lessons. The forum will also include many side-events providing a more in-depth exploration of the pertinent trade facilitation issues.

“Agricultural products are the fastest category and industry growing within Export Portal, and I can say that is just natural that SMEs around the world are actively looking for new ways for selling their products around the world,” Ms. Spinu said. “The role of innovative technologies such as Export Portal is crucial in helping these SMEs integrate within the world supply chain of food with ease and at optimal costs. I want to explain the current issues existing within SMEs’ integration in international trade due to the high cost involved and how technology slowly but surely changes this.”

Export Portal’s trade goals align directly with the purpose of this session, as its international B2B trade platform is an affordable and all-encompassing solution for SMEs all over the world. The features that are available and being developed on Export Portal, such as the panel of experts (EP+), the educational hub (EPU), and data flow insights (EPI), provide SMEs with the resources they need to trade effectively on an international scale safely, securely, and efficiently.

The Digital and Sustainable Trade Facilitation for Regional Prosperity session is co-organized by ADB, ESCAP, Ministry of Commerce, India and Confederation of Indian Industry and will be held on Wednesday, September 18, from 9:00 to 10:45 AM.

 

SOURCE Export Portal

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Blockchain

Crypto.com Lists Lisk (LSK)

Vlad Poptamas

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Crypto.com, the pioneering payments and cryptocurrency platform, announced today that it has listed Lisk (LSK) to its App. LSK joins a growing list of cryptocurrencies and stablecoins on the Crypto.com platform, such as Bitcoin (BTC), Ether (ETH), Litecoin (LTC), XRP, TrueUSD (TUSD), PAXOS (PAX), and its own MCO and CRO Tokens.

Lisk is a next generation platform that allows for the development and distribution of JavaScript based decentralized applications using an easy to use, fully featured ecosystem. Through Lisk, developers can build, publish, distribute, and monetize their applications within a custom built cryptocurrency powered system that utilizes custom blockchains, smart contracts, cloud storage, and computing nodes; all from within one industry solution.

With LSK added to the Crypto.com, users can now purchase it at true cost with no fees – credit card and bank transfer both supported. As Crypto.com also offers the MCO Visa Card, this adds additional utility to LSK as users can easily convert cryptocurrencies into fiat currencies and spend at over 40m merchants globally.

 

SOURCE Crypto.com

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