Citizens Bank launches integrated corporate payment tool

Citizens Bank announced the launch of its new integrated payments solution Thursday, designed to make payments faster and more secure for corporate clients, according to a release.

The new tool is set to enable, congregate and streamline invoice automation and settlement, and is designed to reduce the time accounts payable (AP) teams spend on manual tasks. The bank said it also aims to improve control over payment timing, and reduce risk mitigation through vendor bank authentication.

The ‘Integrated Payables’ solution offers a range of settlement options, and allows clients to earn rebates on virtual cards, ACH payments and Paymode-X rebates. The service will utilize Bottomline Technologies‘ Paymode-X electronic payment network, which is reported to have more than 450,000 participating business members.

“Payment options are changing rapidly, which creates new challenges as well as new opportunities, so we developed our new Integrated Payables solution to leverage the latest technology to improve the payments process for our corporate clients,” Citizens Bank head of treasury product solutions Matt Richardson stated in the release.

The announcement highlights the rise of AP automation in digital bill collection and payment, with the sector expected to double over the next five years to $4.5 billion and 35% of businesses in the US and UK planning to upgrade their spend management and expense controls, according to PYMNTS.

Founded in 1828, the Providence-based financial institution is one of the oldest banks in the US, with approximately 1,000 branches in New England, the Mid-Atlantic and Midwest, and over $185 billion in assets.

Earlier this month, the bank announced they have entered into a definitive merger agreement to acquire boutique investment bank JMP Group in an all-cash transaction worth $149 million, according to the Financial Times.

That deal follows three purchases by Citizens this year, including HSBC bank branches on the East coast, community bank Investors Bancorp and consulting firm Willamette Management Associates.

In other recent fintech news, JPMorgan announced the upcoming launch of its anticipated UK digital bank next week, the banks first international expansion effort in its 222-year legacy. Credit builder Self Financial also raised a $50 million Series E led by Altos Ventures.

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