Credit Management APRIL 2019



Mercedes accelerates out of the block

MERCEDES-Benz is to pilot blockchain

technology with the potential to

‘fundamentally revolutionise its

procurement processes’.

The carmaker has developed a

blockchain prototype containing contract

clauses, including around sustainability

requirements that can be viewed by all

participants in the supply chain. The

system, which makes use of blockchain’s

secure distributed ledger technology, also

offers opportunities to track and trace

components and raw materials.

Sabine Angermann, Head of Purchasing

and Supplier Quality for Raw Materials and

Strategy at Mercedes-Benz Cars, says the

transmission of contracts to each member

of the supply chain is the prerequisite of

cooperation with our suppliers, especially

in terms of sustainability and ethical

conduct: “The blockchain prototype

opens up completely new ways to make

purchasing processes simpler and safer.”

Mercedes and software company

Icertis teamed up to create ‘a consistent

documentation of contracts in the supply

chain’. The carmaker said it ‘requires its

direct suppliers to vigorously pass on

and control standards and contractual

obligations with regard to working

conditions, human rights, environmental

protection, safety, business ethics and

compliance within the supply chain’.

“The prototype allows a transparent

mapping and understanding of this

transmission across the entire supply

chain. Should one of the sub-suppliers

deviate from the contractual obligations,

this becomes visible in the blockchain,

similar to a secure accounting system,”

Mercedes says.

“Acceptance by suppliers and partners

is now being tested in a pilot project and

feedback is being obtained. Consistently

establishing blockchain technology with

all suppliers in the respective supply

chain is a fundamental requirement for the

achievement of the goal: close cooperation

for more sustainability.”





THE Technical Committee met

recently and discussed a number of

important topics relevant to members,

such as: HMRC consultation entitled

‘Protecting your taxes in insolvency’

and preferential creditors status from

April 2020; vexatious claims and

discussions around the potential size

of the problem; data sharing with

SMEs; Pay.UK’s ‘Confirmation of Payee’

service which aims to reduce the risk

of payments sent to the wrong account,

and benefits/risks associated with

the service; and the CICM responses

to recent consultations including

BEIS ‘Creating a responsible payment

culture’, HM Treasury’s ‘Breathing

Space policy proposal’ and the Ministry

of Justice ‘Review of 2014 enforcement

agent reforms’.

Poor management

THE Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has

found that three asset management firms

– Hargreave Hale, RAMAM, and Newton

– breached competition law – the FCA’s

first formal decision under its competition

enforcement powers. The FCA has fined

Hargreave Hale £306,300 and RAMAM

£108,600. The FCA has not imposed a fine on

Newton because it was given immunity

under the competition leniency programme.

Self-employed growing

DATA from the Office for National Statistics

(ONS) revealed the number of selfemployed

people in the UK rose by 63,000

to 4.84 million in the last quarter of 2018.

The nation’s strong labour market is being

powered significantly by the self-employed

sector, which now equates to almost 15

percent of the UK’s workforce – almost as

much as the entire public sector.

Clever Thinking

SHAWBROOK Bank has provided

data firm DueDil with a £3.5 million

Growth Capital facility to help fund the

company’s expansion plans. DueDil’s

API and web platform use proprietary

matching technology to link billions of

company data points from authoritative

sources, providing insight through its

Business Information Graph. Companies

leverage this information to build

their go to market strategy and create

a seamless customer onboarding

journey. The London-based firm works

with more than 400 companies across

financial services, fintech and technology

sectors, including big brands such as

Transferwise, Santander, Growth Street

and Paymentsense.

Billhop launches card collaboration with Visa

BILLHOP has launched a collaboration with Visa to enable small

businesses across Europe to pay their suppliers using a card,

regardless of whether or not the supplier accepts card payments, to

help improve working capital for small businesses. The collaboration

with Visa will allow Billhop to expand across Europe, including

markets such as France, Italy and Spain in the first half of 2019.

Billhop, which has already launched in Sweden and the UK, is a

payment service enabling businesses to pay invoices with cards

regardless of whether the end beneficiary accepts card payments or

not. No onboarding of the end beneficiary is required allowing Billhop

to enable 100 percent of supplier payments on card instantaneously.

On the back of card payments made by small and large businesses,

Billhop says it has experienced a significant pace of growth in

Europe generally. Small companies benefit from the grace period on

their existing credit cards, whereas larger corporations use bespoke

credit cards as a working capital financing solution when paying

larger ticket suppliers through Billhop.

The Recognised Standard / / April 2019 / PAGE 7

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