Voice of the Industry

Jerome Traisnel, AFEPAME: "Innovative pan-European solutions for e-mandates are burgeoning in several countries"

Friday 4 July 2014 10:34 CET | Editor: Melisande Mual | Voice of the industry

The new legal framework will either be the ground for their flourishing future or their ultimate demise

The ability to use electronic mandates to establish customer proof of consent for a single SEPA direct debit (SDD) or a series of debits is an important advancement in the area of payments in Europe and one that is consistent with the Europe 2020 digital agenda.

There are many electronic mandate solutions in the Euro area providing a wide range of levels of proof of consent. However, the EPC proposal regarding pan-European e-mandates remains a failure (1). It is inaccurate to say that the only alternative solutions are national products. There are other proven trans-national solutions that have been available for years.

To facilitate the development of trans-national solutions, it is necessary to create a single, coherent market for the customer, the customers PSP (2), the merchant and the merchants PSP. ERPB (3) is expected to issue recommendations that those responsible for SCT/SDD schemes can propose a functional framework. This framework must contribute to the establishment of trust, enable solutions that are fluid, universal and synchronous (4) and must ensure evidentiary strength with regard to the issue of proof.

To address the failures of the EPC e-mandate, these recommendations and the functional framework to be proposed, must allow for the emergence of multiple trans-national solutions that are competitive, coherent and can be deployed rapidly. They must create a level playing field for all parties and guard against legal risks (5). Without a level playing field, there will necessarily be a great deal of variety in the solutions chosen by merchants. Those who choose less reliable solutions risk creating customer resistance to SEPA direct debit causing serious damage to the activities of merchants who opt for higher-quality solutions.

Therefore, it is preferable to propose a framework that protects the consumer and at the same time does not hinder innovation and growth of the market. The BCE recommendation (6) regarding implementation of strong authentication addresses these issues. The parties concerned must have the option to offer advanced or qualified signatures (7) or any other mechanism as long as the proof of strong authentication can be demonstrated, the link between consent and authentication can be shown and the link can be maintained over time.

(1) In the sense of Annex VII of the EPC SDD Rulebook version 7.1.
(2) According to the Payment Services Directive, a PSP is either a bank or a payment institution.
(3) Euro Retail Payments Board – see
(4) Which can be involved no matter which of the 3,930 PSPs participating in the SDD Core scheme the customer is using.
(5) Accepting only a signature based on a qualified certificate is against European regulations (Legislative procedure 2012/0146(COD), final approved document P7_TA(2014)0282) Art 25-1 provides that an electronic signature shall not be denied legal effect and admissibility as evidence in legal proceedings solely on the grounds that it is in an electronic form or that it does not meet the requirements of the qualified electronic signature..
(6) Recommendations for the security of internet payments – ECB - January 2013.
(7) In the sense of the European Regulation (Legislative procedure 2012/0146(COD), final approved document P7_TA(2014)0282).

Jerome is the president of the French Association of Payment Institutions (AFEPAME) that gathers all the non-bank payment firms licensed in France. Jerome is a serial entrepreneur with a combination of technical and business expertise. He is the CEO and co-founder of SlimPay. SlimPay acts as a PSP for merchants, managing on their behalf the acquisition of consent from SEPA direct debit customers, managing mandate databases, SEPA orders and the collection of funds, as well as dispute management and managing proof for mandates. Operational since the end of 2011, the SlimPay solution has collected and managed more than 4 million SDD electronic mandates in 24 SEPA countries for bank accounts in 531 different European banks.


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Keywords: Jerome Traisnel, AFEPAME, pan-European solutions, e-mandates
Countries: World

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