Major Australian banks enter joint venture to develop unified mobile payment app

By Tom Wadlow
Some of Australia’s largest banks are teaming up to help make mobile payments more seamless for Australian consumers. Commonwealth Bank, Westpac and...

Some of Australia’s largest banks are teaming up to help make mobile payments more seamless for Australian consumers.

Commonwealth Bank, Westpac and National Bank of Australia (NAB) are entering a partnership to develop a new payment app that enables free instant payments to consumers and small businesses, regardless of who they bank with.

Named Beem, the app will allow anyone to make a payment using their smartphone, and request payment from someone who owes them money or to split a bill. The hope is that it will become an industry-wide payment solution, and is open to interest from other banks, industry, and retail players.

Commonwealth Bank Group Executive of Retail Banking Services, Matt Comyn, said: “Two thirds of small businesses say they are owed money for completed work, with around $7,300 owed to small traders. 

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Comyn continued: “Beem will give small businesses a cost effective and easy way to collect payments instantly and on the go for their goods and services, without having to take the larger leap into using merchant credit facilities, or issuing invoices to be paid later."

Commonwealth Bank will conduct user testing of a Beem prototype, with the app to be available for download on iOS and Android smartphones later this year.

Beem will initially have a sending limit of $200 a day ($6,000 per month), with a monthly receiving limit of $10,000 as an initial risk control measure.

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