Market Overview

SmartDebit comment on reports that SEPA payment errors could cost European businesses billions of Euros


SmartDebit, the UK's leading Direct Debit Bureau, have commented on a new report from global information services company, Experian, that suggests European businesses could lose money from simple payment errors during the migration to the Single European Payments Area (SEPA).

(PRWEB UK) 30 October 2012

SEPA is a pan-European initiative aiming to a create a single market for European payments; where cross border transactions can be made as easily and efficiently as they are within a nation itself. According Experian's research, the move to SEPA will expose out-of-date account data and numerous other errors that have previously been overcome through locally implemented fixes.

Analysis of over half a million bank account records held by businesses across Europe has shown that 12 per cent of electronic payments made to and from businesses in Euros, currently contains data errors that may block the timely and cost-effective transfer of money under the new SEPA legislation. Just 65 per cent of Euro transactions show fully accurate account data. Experian also found that 45 per cent of new SEPA-compliant International Bank Account Numbers (IBANS) stored by large European companies do not have the valid Bank Identifier Codes (BICs) which is required for the successful completion of transactions.

SmartDebit are currently developing their system to incorporate SEPA payment mechanisms, and they anticipate the development to be completed by 3rd quarter of 2013. A spokesperson from the Direct Debit Bureau commented on the Experian report:

“Being such a large initiative, SEPA is bound to have some teething problems. The Experian report has suggested that these errors will lead to SEPA payment failures, costing businesses approximately 50 Euros per failed transaction. The good news is this report has come to light with the mandatory deadline due in February 2014, which gives European businesses well over a year to ensure to rectify the errors in their accounts. We urge all business looking to use SEPA to transfer funds throughout Europe to examine their account data, rectify any errors and convert them to the SEPA standard”.

About SmartDebit

SmartDebit® are the UK's leading Direct Debit Bureau, specialising in payment processing services since 1998. A Bacs approved Bureau, scoring ‘Excellent' in all five categories of the Bacs audit, and ISO 27001 compliant. Providing a complete range of services: Outsourcing; SmartDebit-Admin cloud based portal; SmartDebit-Online payer sign up; SmartDebit-API integrated solution and SmartDebit-Contingency.

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