CBA moves to accelerate PayTo adoption with new fintech partnership

Paypa Plane CommBank CBA

The Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) will take a 20 per cent stake in payments specialist fintech Paypa Plane, with the new partnership set to fast-track access for CBA’s business customers to the New Payments Platform’s (NPP’s) PayTo service.

The deal with Paypa Plane, which has developed its own NPP-ready, end-to-end payments platform specifically for businesses, will give CBA’s business customers a new means to access the NPP’s hotly awaited PayTo service.

PayTo – initially dubbed the ‘Mandated Payments Service’ in its development phase – will enable merchants and businesses to initiate real-time payments from their customers’ bank accounts. The service is set to be formally rolled out by the NPPA in mid-2022.

Through the service, which is touted as offering merchants end-to-end visibility across the payments process, businesses will be able to validate accounts and funds in real-time as well as receive notifications across various stages of a payment, including when a payment agreement is paused, changed, or cancelled.

In a brief introducing the new service, the NPP said PayTo would “remove the uncertainty of making and receiving payments from bank accounts”.

The service can also be used by businesses to enable third parties to conduct payments on their behalf, such as corporate payroll and accounts payable.

At the customer end, the service offers an alternative to direct debit payments, said to offer customers “more control over managing their payments agreements”.

PayTo also supports the linking of bank accounts for in-app payments, account-on-file type arrangements for e-commerce and subscription services, funding for other payment schemes like digital wallets and buy now, pay later (BNPL) services, and support for one-off payments.

CBA’s group executive business banking Mike Vacy-Lyle said the new partnership with PayaPlane would help the bank to accelerate its delivery of PayTo for its business customers “and over time, open up other new capabilities to revolutionise the payments experience for businesses and consumers”.

“The New Payments Platform is a significant initiative for Australia’s digital economy and has already brought the benefits of real-time payments to consumers and businesses,” Vacy-Lyle said.

“Today’s announcement is part of our continued investment in our payments ecosystems, and the NPP, to bring the best payments experiences to our customers.”

Founded in 2018, the Brisbane-based Paypa Plane has been strongly focused on building its PayTo capability, teaming with payments giant Cuscal – which has played a central role in developing the NPPA service– as an initiating participant and payer participant.

Paypa Plane chief executive, Simone Joyce, said: “Our partnership with CBA means together we can bring instant momentum to the delivery of PayTo through the combination of our technology and CBA’s customer base – an important step for the industry and the payments ecosystem.

“Our partnership represents an important milestone for Paypa Plane, but it also signals a new era for the way both businesses and consumers will be able to think about and manage their payments – which is an exciting outcome for everyone.”

Paypa Plane promotes its platform as “a digital link” between a business and a payer which it said provides “complete transparency over the life of their payment arrangement”.

“This means it can provide significant cost savings and cash-flow assurance to businesses, as well as in-built compliance and customer care. For consumers or payers, it offers greater self-management and transparency.”