Unipart Group has become the latest pan-European business to embrace the single euro payments area (SEPA) Direct Debit (SDD) scheme in partnership with Lloyds Banking Group.
An early adopter of SDD, which is expected to become mandatory for all eurozone businesses in the next few years, the full service logistics provider expects to be fully migrated to the scheme within the next three months.
SDD enables the efficient collection of payments into one bank and one bank account where previously companies like Unipart, that have a European presence, have had to manage the complexity of running different schemes, with varying rules, reporting requirements and country bank accounts. Working with Lloyds Banking Group to implement SDD will now enable Unipart to be both debtors and creditors for direct debits on a pan-European basis, while streamlining their internal processes into a single method.
Having now completed a successful trial of SDD in Italy, Unipart Group has already begun to issue mandates in Belgium, Austria, France and Germany.
Mike Morris, shared service manager at Unipart, said: “We have a number of locations around Europe and have until now had to use separate accounts. With SDD we can use one account, which reduces the administration and the amount of man-hours involved in collecting funds and transferring them back to London.”
He added: “We had some unexpected rejections in the early days. We spoke to Lloyds Banking Group about it, and were very impressed by their reaction. They took up the case on our behalf, dealing directly with the bank in question in Italy, and it was quickly resolved. They were very proactive.”
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