2006-2015: NACHA’s Secure Vault Payments—Act 1 of Online Banking ePayments US
Following in the footsteps of iDEAL in the Netherlands and Giropay in Germany, NACHA, administrator of the US ACH network, issued an RFP to build a real-time OBeP payment network for the US market:
- eWise, PayWithMyBank’s parent company, won the competitive RFP, and entered into an exclusive partnership agreement with NACHA to build and operate the platform
- NACHA developed the operating rules, eWise operated the platform, and the Secure Vault Payments network was born: https://www.nationalach.com/secure-vault-payments/
- Bank participants included US Bank, PNC, Regions, Wells Fargo, and many smaller FIs
- All banks enabled via direct (API) connections to their online and core banking systems
- Real-time good funds access – no risk of NSF (ACH credit push vs. ACH debit pull)
- Consumer redirected from merchant site to their bank’s OBeP web application
- Merchant pricing below card interchange
- Revenue share between the consumer’s bank, NACHA, eWise, and the merchant’s bank
Secure Vault Payments ultimately hit a chicken and egg problem whereby:
- Banks (beyond the initial enabled participants, representing ~10% of the online banking population) stated that the required IT integration effort to enable their online banking customer base was difficult to prioritize before having a proven business case based on proven merchant demand
- Large merchants would not adopt before having at least 50% of the country’s online banking population enabled to transact on the network
2012-2016: PayWithMyBank—Act 2 of Online Banking ePayments in the US
Due to the chicken and egg challenge mentioned above, growth in the Secure Vault Payments network stalled in 2011, and the platform was ultimately taken offline December 31, 2015
eWise pivoted in 2012 and, in consultation with the banks, devised a new approach to market based on a more accommodating bank participation program:
- Banks’ IT resources were removed from the critical path towards achieving a critical mass of enabled online banking customers by using their public websites as APIs and direct consumer consent as legal framework.
- Banks were given a way to participate in the network on their own timeframe:
– Without any IT involvement yet with a small share in the revenue
– With some IT involvement (exposing an API to provide real-time good funds access) with a larger share in the revenue
With a critical mass of online banking customers enabled on day one, eWise had solved the chicken and egg problem, and was finally in a position to focus on merchant adoption:
- eWise named the new OBeP network PayWithMyBank, and ultimately renamed its payments division PayWithMyBank, Inc.: http://www.paywithmybank.com
- PayWithMyBank still owns the Secure Vault Payments platform source code and patents
PayWithMyBank has since stayed in contact with the banks and NACHA, updating them on merchant adoption
2016: Banking industry moving towards building APIs
Following the success of PFM site operators (online banking sites and brokerages, Intuit’s Mint) and a myriad of FinTech startups aggregating banking data on a nightly batch basis for PFM, investment management, credit scoring and other financial/payments applications, the banks (including Bank of America, Chase and Wells Fargo) are reporting that their customers clearly want these innovative applications so they need to support them
- However, they are also saying that the technology used to date, web data aggregation (a.k.a “screen scraping”), is expensive from an IT resource perspective (because of the nightly batch process central to PFM solutions) and not optimal as creating a third party information broker situation in the middle, which disintermediate banks’ relationship with customers
- In response, some banks recently announced the development of APIs to let third parties access customer data
- Our perspective: Evolution towards open bank APIs will happen, but it will be a process—and not an event—due to the substantial investments required by banks to get there
2019: PayWithMyBank merged with Trustly
- Silicon Valley based PayWithMyBank merged with Europe’s leading payment provider, Trustly to deliver transatlantic online banking payments coverage.
- Together, Trustly and PayWithMyBank enable merchants with a global footprint to accept Online Banking Payments from European and US consumers.
- The merger addresses the needs of merchants to have an alternative to the card networks and accept online payments directly from consumers’ bank accounts, and for consumers to be able to pay in a fast, simple, and secure way.
Schedule a free consultation with a Trustly payment specialist to learn more about how you could leverage Online Banking Payment for your business.