Santander Bank has rolled out Santander Cash Nexus, a payments tool solution for the bank’s commercial, corporate and investment banking clients in North America. The new platform offers Santander clients a suite of international connectivity and provides local payment initiation and information reporting services in several markets around the world via a single point of entry.
Chris Bozek, managing director and head of working capital solutions at Santander, explained that Santander Cash Nexus will enable the bank to reduce business costs and increase the efficiency of its banking services. “What we’re seeing [is] digital commerce clients are going global much earlier in their life cycle,” he said. “In establishing shared service centers, [we can] drive efficiencies and controls, which is part of the motivation as a client to come to us to seek solutions.”
Santander Cash Nexus offers the bank’s clients the ability to simplify and automate payment processing both globally and locally through an online portal, a mobile app and the Information Center, which is a centralized multi-bank reporting engine. “The information that is generated out of that multi-bank reporting can be accessed through the portal, and the portal allows clients to initiate payments but also centralize their worldwide statement,” Bozek explained.
The Santander Cash Nexus platform has existed for several years internationally, but due to growing demand, the bank is now able to offer it to North American clients through Santander’s global portal. That connection allows U.S. based customers to complete transactions with other global banks for local payment processing.
Erika Baumann, senior analyst at Aite Group, noted that payments is undergoing a “revolution,” particularly in the U.S. According to 2019 a payments study from Aite Group, more than 80% of banks have said that transforming payments at their institution is a priority. Most banks included in the study agreed that not investing in payment capabilities would put them at risk of losing clients, although there are varied timelines for implementation.
Some countries enabled real-time payments decades before the United States, and the push for it being developed finally is has reached major banks in the U.S., Baumann said, noting that there are about 50 countries whose banks have used similar payments capabilities to that of Santander Cash Nexus. She added that, because Santander is a subsidiary of a larger Spanish bank, having a global mentality may be another factor driving the bank to develop payments solutions for its clientele.
“We certainly see that with banks that either have a global presence or that have a global parent,” Baumann said. “I do think that banks of all sizes are investing in payments and, if they’re not, they’re going to be at a real competitive disadvantage.”
Bozek agreed that it’s necessary to compete with other financial institutions and startups that offer similar payment solutions, calling Nexus an investment in providing simplified solutions for customers. “It [is] a direct result of listening to our clients,” he added. “[Nexus is] a sustained commitment as emerging payment types come in.”
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