Billhop and ICS partner to improve working capital for SMEs

The pandemic has disrupted the working capital and cash flow of small and medium businesses which still aren’t yet fully recovered from the shock. Commercial payment companies are offering products and services to ease the pressure and help businesses plug liquidity gaps with the help of corporate cards.

This week, Stockholm-based payment services company Billhop has announced that it has partnered with the Netherlands credit card provider, International Card Services (ICS) to help the latter’s business clients to improve their cash flows and liquidity gaps.

As a part of their agreement, ICS commercial cardholders will have access to Billhop’s services at a preferential rate which the clients are able to pay their suppliers using any card regardless of whether the supplier accepts card payments.

This year, GoCardless and BillingPlatform forged a partnership for the quote-to-cash process while Bank of America launched an AP automation platform.

With the help of Billhop, businesses can pay their suppliers instantaneously without needing to on-board the end beneficiary and also taking the advantage of the interest-free payment period offered by the card issuers thus allowing the businesses to extend their payment terms and solidifying their liquidity cushion and better cash flow, as noted in the press note.

“Businesses are increasingly turning to cards as their payment method of choice, namely for the convenience and simplicity cards offer”, said Glenn MacDonald, Chief Commercial Officer at ICS. Also, MacDonald noted the concern that “low card acceptance within the B2B space has for long been the biggest obstacle to increasing the adoption of commercial credit cards”.

According to the press note, Billhop currently serves over 50,000 SMEs, sole traders and large corporations across Europe and has a key presence in the United Kingdom, Sweden, Italy and the Netherlands. The total transactions processed via Billhop, across all of its customer segments, exceeded €270M in 2020.

As per the press release, ICS has been issuing Mastercard and Visa credit cards in the Netherlands for more than 30 years and it is the market leader with 3 million cards issued, and serves both consumers and clients in the business market. ICS has been a subsidiary of ABN AMRO Bank N.V. since 2010.