Union will align organizations’ shared goal of facilitating B2B payments through a routing directory, and enable more rapid development and deployment for the financial services industry
HERNDON, Va., Oct. 1, 2018 – Today, Nacha announced that the Business Payments Directory Association (BPDA) will become an independent, member-led, self-governed group under the Nacha organization. The union will strategically align the efforts of the two organizations to facilitate business-to-business (B2B) payments through development and deployment of a B2B Payments and Remittance Directory. In August 2018, BPDA, in partnership with Discover Financial Services, began work on a proof-of-concept platform for a B2B Directory built on blockchain technology. The alliance will also help support and advance the proof-of-concept effort to ensure rapid delivery to the industry.
“Historically, B2B payments have been a challenge for the financial services industry,” said Jane Larimer, chief operating officer of Nacha. “Businesses are often consumed with onboarding vendors, obtaining and maintaining accurate payment information and ensuring the proper remittance is included for cash application. As a strategic initiative, Nacha works to enable solutions that will support the easy routing, posting, and application of ACH and other payments, particularly in the B2B environment. Aligning with BPDA will allow us to develop and deliver such a solution, leveraging the recognized work and expertise of BPDA.”
“BPDA was formed to bring to market the B2B Directory,” said Lawrence Buettner, BPDA Chairman. “And by combining resources with Nacha, today we are even closer to making this a reality.”
The B2B Directory will be structured as a network of credentialed service provider “sub-directories,” in which trusted and validated payee information will be stored. Credentialed service providers will allow access to the stored electronic payment information, including ACH payment details and other payment methods. Payers can query the Directory to obtain information of a single payee or multiple payees, and payees can manage their information in real time to ensure payment details are current. To support the robust capabilities of the Directory, the platform will leverage open source technologies, blockchain/distributed ledger technology and standardized Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) developed by the member-led organization Afinis Interoperability Standards (formerly the API Standardization Industry Group).
Nacha is a nonprofit organization that convenes hundreds of diverse organizations to enhance and enable electronic payments and financial data exchange within the U.S. and across geographies. Through development of rules, standards, governance, education, advocacy, and in support of innovation, Nacha’s efforts benefit the providers and users of those systems. Nacha leads groups focused on API standardization, authors the Quest Operating Rules for EBT, and is the steward of the ACH Network, a payment system that universally connects all U.S. bank accounts and facilitates the movement of money and information. In 2017, there was a total of nearly 26 billion ACH transactions. Of these, 21.5 billion ACH payments valued at $47 trillion moved across the ACH Network, and more than 4 billion were on-us transactions within financial institutions.
The Business Payments Directory Association
Established in 2016, the Business Payments Directory Association (BPDA) is the nonprofit organization that governs and operates the payments industry’s Business-to-Business (B2B) Directory. Designed in collaboration with industry leaders, including standards organizations, financial institutions, service providers and corporates, the B2B Directory will serve as the standardized, market-driven solution that will facilitate the seamless exchange of business electronic payments enabling greater U.S. digital commerce. For more information about BPDA and the status of the B2B Directory, visit https://b2bdirectoryassociation.com.
Afinis Interoperability Standards is a membership-based standards organization that brings together diverse collaborators – through innovative and agile processes – to develop implementable, interoperable and portable standards across operating environments and platforms.
Afinis furthers the work of Nacha’s Payments Innovation Alliance Application Programming Interface (API) Standardization Industry Group (ASIG) to now advance API standardization efforts across the financial services ecosystem through formal governance, and includes the work of the Interactive Financial eXchange Forum (IFX). Afinis provides a community for thought leadership on the shared goals of expanding efficiency, surety, safety and interoperability within the financial services industry.
Afinis collaborates openly and globally, working with groups around the world to share learning, reduce duplicative efforts, and create standards that lessen friction and improve the ability of diverse stakeholders to partner in bringing innovations more quickly to market. Visit afinis.org for more information or to join.