The Future of Business Payments: Q&A with Kevin Phalen, Head of Global Business Payments, Visa

Corporate Payments And Payables


Germaine Lang

Jan 9, 2020

Just about everyone in the business payments space can agree that this is an exciting time to be in the industry. This is the second post in a three-part series that presents perspectives from industry experts across various B2B payments functions: global marketing, corporate products and services, and global business payments - in a Q&A format.

Next up is Kevin Phalen, Head of Global Business Payments for Visa who brings a global perspective to all things payments and how Visa helps shape the world of business payments.

How will business payments evolve over the coming years?

B2B payments represent over 11% of Visa’s global payment volume and the growth is accelerating across geographies, industries, and verticals. Just a short time ago, only the largest multinationals were concerned about how to pay and get paid globally, which meant payment solutions were geared to large multinational markets. Now, whether you’re a global manufacturer or a local pizza shop that needs to source mozzarella from Italy, every business needs to be able to make global payments. As businesses’ needs continue to grow, we’re going to see a corresponding evolution of digital solutions in all aspects of payments, from access to enablement to initiation. We also expect that the global nature of payments around the world will continue to evolve to address the need for speed, transparency, and optionality.

What role will Visa play in the future of B2B payments?

Visa is helping define the future of B2B payments, and we are very excited about the opportunity to help our financial institutions and their corporate customers in the space. We see opportunities everywhere we look. For example, while paper checks make up a shrinking percentage of business payments today in the United States, the reality is that Visa plays an enormously important role in converting some of those check payments to digital payments. We’re also going to be instrumental in breaking down geographic barriers that no longer need to exist in the B2B payment ecosystem. To that end, we are streamlining global payment flows through our B2B Connect platform to help improve high value, cross-border payments. And finally, we will continue to work with AP/AR partners that can help reduce friction in the payments ecosystem.

What will business finance departments need to do to prepare for the future of B2B payments?


Technology advances in the payment landscape are evolving so quickly that companies, especially those with global footprints, need to drive interoperability across their payment systems. This means finance departments must find ways to increase collaboration between AP and AR departments, while also reducing geographic walls for multinational organizations. The best finance departments are already out there driving the evolution of business payments, partnering with their financial institutions, their networks, and their payment providers to offer them better solutions. And at Visa, our goal is to help our financial institution clients and technology partners deliver those solutions. We are well positioned to help bring together partners and to enable the ecosystem to drive positive innovation in the B2B payments landscape.

To access the full discussion and see what payment experts believe the future holds, check out the ebook - "The Future of Business Payments".

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Posted by

Germaine Lang

Germaine Lang is the Managing Editor of SmartPayments with a strong creative and technical writing background across many industries. She also works to engage customers and relate their experiences with vendor products and services, positioning them as innovative thought leaders.
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