Aboitiz-led Union Bank of the Philippines (UnionBank) introduced an integrated financing platform that is hoped to simplify businesses’ supply chain operations.
The platform ensures seamless cash flow management with real-time payment and loan processing. Businesses can easily monitor their receivables and payables with the platform’s real-time visibility feature. Businesses can also automate payments with the auto-debit feature.
“Traditional and manual financing processes applied that have once been effective pre-pandemic, now pose challenges to businesses as they restart their operations in the new normal,” said Mon Duarte, EVP and head of Transaction Banking and Platform Development, UnionBank. “With the right financing technology, delays and errors they previously encountered can now be overcome and overall operational efficiency can be achieved.”
“Our blockchain-enabled Supply Chain Financing Platform supports businesses and their supply chain ecosystems through three crucial points: A community-based approach, Transparent transactions, and Automated financing,” Duarte said.
He also emphasized the need for the government to help businesses with their digital transformation by fully adopting digital solutions and decreasing manual processes. The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the digital adoption of businesses, especially the micro-, small-, and medium-sized enterprises (MSME).
Before and during the pandemic, UnionBank introduced several products geared toward meeting the needs of MSMEs, such as dealer financing, credit programs, which aimed to ensure uninterrupted supply chain financing for businesses.
“All these enhancements have further improved the collection and disbursement flow of supply chain communities within the platform,” UnionBank said.
The bank highlighted that digital invoice presentment, payment, loan processing, collections, and reporting have now been minimized to two minutes, compared to manual processing which can take weeks.
“On top of these, UnionBank further enhanced the digital experience of its clients through the platform with new features such as deductions processing, automated tax compliance, self-service and real-time reports,” said Duarte. “We also improved the platform through the inclusion of custom fields, file attachments, auto-debit arrangements, credit notes and debit notes acceptance, and SMS and email notifications for ease of processing.”
Collection or disbursement processes across business counterparties were also synchronized further along with improved access to collateral-free and renewable business loans without recourse to the community anchor.
“With the Supply Chain platform, UnionBank has introduced an effective wholesale lending strategy packaged with a retail account and online and app banking enrollment. The platform also allowed the bank to lend effectively to MSMEs and to the agriculture industry, which is required by the Philippine government amongst the local banks. UnionBank continues and will continue to develop new features and products on the platform to further deliver on its digitization and SME lending objectives,” Duarte said.