Many payments platforms were built for domestic use, with international payments capabilities wedged in as an afterthought. But as most bankers know, international payments is an altogether different animal with complexities that only the biggest of banks could address.
This was the landscape in 2018 when Jon Dobson, Co-Founder of Q2 fintech partner PayRecs, decided to leave his job in banking and build an international payments platform that could efficiently and smoothly move money globally and enable community banks and credit unions to compete for valuable commercial customers.
We sat down with Dobson to learn more about the platform he helped develop and how clients are benefiting from the technology today.
Q2: How does PayRecs work?
Dobson: PayRecs is an online platform businesses use through their bank to send, receive, and track international payments, as well as hold currency accounts. The platform has a very intuitive interface; offers real-time rates, so businesses can lock in exchange rates; has the ability to transfer funds in more than 100 different currencies; and automatically moves money, 24 hours a day.
With our deep integration with Q2, you can offer business customers single sign-on (SSO), two-factor authentication, and multi-level approval structures, all intended to give them a seamless, secure experience.
Q2: What problems are FIs experiencing with international payments and how does the PayRecs platform solve for them?
Dobson: We see two big pains. First, the way financial institutions are offering international payments today is very manual. When a customer initiates a payment, back-office staff often have to rekey it into one or more other systems. It’s just a super manual process, which causes operational costs and risks. And FIs generally aren’t making much money on international payments—it’s viewed simply as a service you have to offer. PayRecs automates the process, removing virtually all the operational hurdles, and it helps you generate revenue in the process.
Second, most large commercial customers need international payments capabilities to pay suppliers, contractors, and employees; or receive payments from partners and customers; or fund satellite offices in foreign countries. Most community banks and credit unions struggle to meet this need. Our platform allows you to deliver through a best-in-class user interface backed by robust limits and entitlements that enable your institution to mitigate risk and protect your customers.
Q2: What are the benefits of PayRecs to the FI?
Dobson: Because international payments is a service most businesses require, they’ll turn to the big banks for help if you don’t have a solution, or your user interface is subpar. So, above all else, PayRecs gives you the ability to compete. We’ve had clients tell us they’ve won new business or strengthened existing relationships because they offer PayRecs.
In addition, PayRecs streamlines and automates the back office, lessening costs and risks; and it generates new revenue.
Q2: How do commercial account holders benefit?
Dobson: Commercial customers benefit from much simpler, secure, intuitive online experience that allows for all the controls they’ve come to expect with traditional domestic payments. They also have much more visibility into transactions—they can monitor and track payments and see payment history so their compliance teams can fulfill all necessary obligations.
Q2: Why did you choose to partner with Q2 to deliver your solution to FIs?
Dobson: It’s an interesting story. We were selling directly to FIs and got introduced to Mercantile Bank. They loved the platform, had identified international payments as a major need, and wanted it integrated with their digital banking platform. We liked the idea, learned what was possible, and realized our product would be significantly better and stronger on the Q2 platform.
Having a bank like Mercantile work with us to help shape the necessary features and integrations made it all the more attractive to us.
Q2: What advice would you give FIs considering launching an international payments solution?
Dobson: I think it’s important that you understand your FI’s goals and the problems for which we solve. PayRecs levels the playing field between community FIs and the big banks, giving you the ability to truly compete.
To learn more about PayRecs, look for Dobson and his team later this month at CONNECT 23. They’ll have a booth in the Exhibit Hall, will conduct a fintech demo on Tuesday at 2:10 p.m. in Park View B, and participate in a panel discussion titled, “How to Develop Your Fintech Strategy and Deliver High Impact Results” on Wednesday at 11:55 a.m. in Palm Park A. Not signed up to attend Q2’s annual conference? Register today!