American Express, SAP NetWeaver Team on Payment Automation Solution
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American Express and SAP will collaborate on an integrated product that simplifies payments automation, the two companies said on Oct. 19.
The offering will combine American Express's Buyer Initiated Payments product with SAP's Process Integration (PI) technology available on the SAP NetWeaver platform. The integration of American Express technology into SAP Netweaver will allow SAP customers to process electronic payments seamlessly, according to the companies.
The joint American Express/SAP product will feature a "plug and play" utility for SAP customers to set up electronic payments quickly, the companies said. The PI technology maintains payment data integrity, workflows, and approval process that customers are already running on SAP. The integrated Buyer Initiated Payments/PI software is expected to be available in the first quarter of 2011, but will be available to SAP customers in the United States only, said an American Express spokeswoman.
Many enterprises have multiple system interfaces between their own enterprise resource planning systems and the systems belonging to their banking partners and suppliers, often depending on custom development to link everything together. According to the statement, maintenance costs can be high, averaging anywhere from $50,000 to more than $500,000 for large global corporations.
By integrating payments solutions with SAP's existing ERP system, corporations can enhance controls, optimize the timing of their payments, and gain improved visibility into cash flow, the companies said. The solution will provide a single interface with improved financial connectivity to external suppliers, financial institutions, and other internal systems.
For more, read the eWeek article SAP NetWeaver, American Express Team Up on Automated Payments Model.