Last year’s launch of Apple Pay sparked interest in the evolution of payment platforms and security measures surrounding consumers’ information.
Its tokenization protocol to protect credit card and bank information was cited as a“game changer” by Capital One Financial CFO Richard Fairbank. Samsung and Google recently announced plans to deliver their own payment platforms to mobile devices.
But 18 months before Apple Pay’s debut, AribaPay was introduced to transform B2B payments by improving speed, accuracy and security. I spoke with Drew Hofler about developments with B2B payments and the influence of B2C innovation on B2B payment processes. Drew is the director of collaborative finance solutions marketing for Ariba, and he frequently writes about innovations within payment systems. Drew will speak at Ariba LIVE, which takes place April 7 to 9 in Las Vegas and 8 to 10 June in Munich. This is part two of my discussion with Drew.
Q: Does Apple Pay have an influence on the way companies think about B2B payments?
A: Innovations that occur in B2C markets can inform expectations for B2B experiences. People want the same ease, visibility and mobility they enjoy as consumers. This is helping to drive change. Employees bring these expectations for business processes into the workplace.
Security is also a top interest. With the steady stream of news stories about security breaches of consumers’ personal information, it is causing companies to reflect on how they secure their suppliers’ information. AribaPay’s security regarding substituting sensitive info with a non-sensitive token is similar to the process with Apple Pay.
Q: What can Apple Pay learn from AribaPay?
A: Apple Pay and AribaPay operate in two very different realms, with two very different sets of needs regarding the payment. Consumer payments are immediate and simple, happening at the point of transaction. That’s not the case with B2B payments, where there are time gaps between the order, delivery and payment. B2B is just more complex. But in both instances, there are two critical pieces to the payment event — the movement of money and the communication of information.
The money itself is important, sure. But for B2Bs, the information about the payment is just as essential—perhaps even more so. With AribaPay, we have put a premium on the gigabits of data associated with a payment event and on integrating those effectively. ApplePay has made consumer payments secure and convenient, but I have a feeling they will see that the information and data surrounding that payment is just as valuable a currency as the funds being transferred (and they likely already have).
Interested to learn more from Drew? Check out for the part one of our conversation, where Drew explores what’s ahead for accounts payable.
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