With Brandon Spear
While it may lack the sexiness found in the consumer space, B2B payments are experiencing their own form of transformation. With complicated buying cycles and the complexity of getting different silos, organizations, and companies to communicate with one other, B2B payments still run years behind where we are in the consumer space.
MSTS is attempting to change that. The B2B payments firm provides a credit as a service program to large firms like Best Buy, but to get there, the company first needs to solve some of the painpoints in the sales cycle. President Brandon Spear joins us on the podcast to define credit as a service and discuss what’s driving growth in the space. We chat about the challenges of running a Credit as a Service® program and some examples of how clients are working with his company.
The move to B2B Credit as a Service
We focus on the business to business transaction. One of our key tenets is to remove the friction that exists in B2B. We focus on the seller by providing a set of tools to the seller. For example, the friction could come in managing different payment terms, disbursement terms, and billing frequencies. One of the biggest challenges sellers face is getting all the information correct on an invoice — from price to purchase control information. If you can solve these problems and deal with a buyer the way they want to be dealt with, you can see significant growth.
Our technology platform handles this. Sellers essentially outsource all the accounts receivable activity — we do all the invoicing, billing, collections, and we provide the working capital. It becomes a turnkey offering that we feel helps sellers sell more to their buyers.
How Best Buy uses MSTS for payments and Credit as a Service
One of our customers is Best Buy for Business. Several years ago, the company built a B2B channel and focused on vertical markets. One market is school districts, which have lots of considerations about how they spend their money on technology assets. We helped construct a solution for Best Buy to put relationship pricing in place and to make it available whether a school district went into a store, phones a sales person or went to Best Buy’s website.
A school district representative can walk into any Best Buy with a piece of plastic that looks like a credit card, identifying them and their school district. They can swipe this card to buy a replacement Chrome Book, for example, and enjoy their special pricing in real time at the point of sale. We can also add the purchase order number and keep track of the school district’s budget.
The importance of solving B2B payments if you want to lend to them
We generally work with the types of suppliers that represent 80 percent of buyers’ spend. Part of our proposition is that there has to be meaningful enough volume that the buyer is interested in controlling the spend and wants to have some type of negotiation around pricing. When you’re in this bucket of suppliers, you have to solve some of these procurement challenges.
Listen to the full podcast on Tearsheet.
In the Press
In B2B, suppliers and getting them paid is a friction-filled process.
The friction is especially acute in manufacturing. The relationships between manufacturers and their suppliers often cross borders, and payments can involve several different currencies.
The “clash of the titans” is a metaphor that is used to describe situations in which two powerful forces refuse to yield to the wishes or conditions of the other.
By Martha Salinas
MSTS is out with a new report on B2B sellers and buyer payment preferences. There are valuable insights and solutions to some of the challenges faced by B2B sellers, but one statistic shocked me.