Interview

Corporate payments without corporate cards

Thursday 8 October 2020 08:58 CET | Editor: Alex Guzu | Interview

As the pandemic is forcing people to work from home, corporate financial infrastructures are rapidly changing. The implications of this could be radical and long-lasting, so Mesh is working to create solutions for the new corporate environment. We sat down with Oded Zehavi, founder and CEO of Mesh, to discuss the future of corporate payments without corporate cards.


How has the pandemic impacted the use of corporate cards? Do you think these changes will continue after the pandemic has subsided?

The pandemic amplified many of the challenges that corporate cards posed to corporate payments. In a working from home environment and the shift to different types of employment, the traditional corporate card that was created to service trusted executives, mostly for travel and entertainment expenses, failed to meet the growing needs of the distributed organisations to pay for necessary goods and services, ranging from mission-critical SaaS subscription payments to simple office supplies for a remote contractor. 

In a statement by Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce, he mentioned that the future of work is a ‘work anywhere, live anywhere environment’ that’s all digital. There is no turning back. Companies will not go back to operating as they did before the pandemic, as they have had to evolve to suit the ‘new normal’. This is even more applicable for corporate payments as corporate cards are not built for this type of environment and are fast becoming obsolete. 

Are these new issues or were some of these problems present before the pandemic?

The pandemic intensified existing trends such as remote working, new types of employment, and growth in cloud services instead of on-premise systems. For many years, businesses were postponing digital transformation. The pandemic accelerated the process, forcing businesses to shift from paper and invoice-based payments to more electronic formats. Sophisticated use of virtual cards has been at the forefront of some of the fastest growing payment innovations since COVID-19. This combined with the rise of digital wallets such as ApplePay and GooglePay is driving the inception of a new era for corporate payments as we know it.  

What solutions have been developed to fix these issues? Could you elaborate on the cardless SaaS solution, for example?

The core of the Mesh innovation enables real-time orchestration of inter-company payments communication that drives the creation of corporate payments with full control and visibility to both the financial teams and employees. Mesh also adds a unique layer that enables assurance for SaaS subscription payments removing the risks due to payment errors or fraud, ensuring that critical SaaS services (such as mail servers, cloud servers, domain renewals etc.) will not be stopped. Last but not least, with the sophisticated AI based payments intelligence, companies will benefit from significant cost reductions and improved cash flow. 

Do you think this could be the end for corporate cards? What would that future look like? 

Less than 10 years ago, organisations were banking on walled gardens and what is today, outdated Blackberry phones. For many executives, the Blackberry became a status symbol, a must-have in every successful executive’s pocket. The corporate card is no different in this regard.

Businesses are finding it increasingly challenging to align and control decentralised corporate spending, but they are also realising that corporate cards pose a major business continuity risk. All it takes to interrupt a business’s mission-critical services is their bank flagging a suspicious transaction and suspending their corporate card.

We envision the future of corporates to be cardless. With Mesh, organisations can replace their existing corporate card infrastructure with our digital, cardless payments solution. 

About Oded Zehavi

Oded Zehavi is the Founder & CEO of Mesh Payments and board and advisory board member of several Israeli fintech companies. Previously, he served as Payoneer's Chief Revenue Officer. Prior to Payoneer, Oded served as the business development director for PayPal, where among other responsibilities he led the inception of the PayPal services in the Middle East and Africa. He also held leadership roles at several technology, banking, and software companies, focusing on sales and customer relations.  

About Mesh Payments

Mesh Payments is disrupting the corporate payments space with its cardless payments solution. Cardless organisations enjoy full visibility, control, and in-depth payment intelligence to better orchestrate, manage, reconcile, and reduce spend while preventing payment failures and assuring business continuity. Redefining corporate payments, without corporate cards. For further information visit: https://meshpayments.com/


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Keywords: Mesh Payments, Oded Zehavi, corporate cards, payments, fintech, COVID-19, pandemic, corona virus, digital wallets, subscription, subscription payments
Categories: Payments & Commerce | Cards
Countries: World
This article is part of category

Payments & Commerce