Align Commerce, a next generation Payment Service Provider (PSP) for global commerce, has recently announced a public beta of its innovative payments platform, the first in the industry to use a Bitcoin blockchain with the aim of maintaining faster, easier and less expensive global transactions. At the moment, the platform is available in 34 countries.
International payments require a big amount of money and seems like Align Commerce wants to change that. The Align Commerce Payments Platform gives the opportunity to customers and businesses to be able to pay in their local fiat currency, besides businesses can receive in their local currency without having to interact with foreign exchanges.
“We have been using Align Commerce to process cross-border payments between certain international divisions of the University of Nicosia. The process has been faster and less expensive on a total cost basis (fees and currency spread) than wire transfers. The platform has also been very simple to use,” commented Antonis Polemitis, a Board Member at the university.
Marwan Forzley, CEO and Founder of Align Commerce, envisions using the platform as a method for transferring wealth in the same manner that wire transfers do at the moment. According to Forzley, the usual transfer of money across borders, can take up to seven days and can be worsened with complexity and multiple fees. Using Blockchain technology, the Align Commerce can cut payment-processing times to three business days down from seven:
“The $24 trillion cross-border payments market is growing at a breakneck pace, expected to eclipse $54 trillion by 2022, despite a highly inefficient and expensive system in which businesses spend over $50 billion on wire and foreign exchange fees, wait up to seven days for transactions to complete, and have no visibility into the process. The blockchain offers a ready alternative. The Align Commerce Payments Platform is the first in the industry to use this global rail to help small and medium-sized businesses quickly collect and receive payments in their local currency while avoiding high wire fees and various hidden fees.”
“Align Commerce is the first company to successfully tackle international payments between businesses using the blockchain, allowing companies an easier, faster, and less expensive option for cross-border transactions. Marwan and his team are an important addition to our portfolio, as they continue to strengthen and grow the ecosystem by creating a better solution for a real business challenge,” said Dan Morehead, CEO of Pantera Capital.
Furthermore, the Bitcoin blockchain brings transparency to an opaque transaction ecosystem. Current legacy systems use a closed system of multiple banks, leaving both buyers and suppliers insecure of where their money is and when it will arrive because of lack of communication. Using the Blockchain, businesses can track the status of each transaction from beginning to end. This is a new feature that previously was unavailable to clients.
“Unless you are a really big company, making cross-border B2B payments is a shockingly bad experience. Businesses pay opaque fees, and neither the recipient nor the payer has any idea when the payment will be credited,” explained Hans Morris, Managing Partner of NYCA Partners.
“Align Commerce has low fees, real-time tracking, and complete transparency on foreign exchange costs. We invest in companies with innovative solutions to big problems in financial services. This is central to our business model, and Align accomplishes just that,” he added.
The Align Commerce Payment Platform can integrate with a number of common ecommerce systems such as Ubercart, WordPress ecommerce, Zencart, and others. The company has released documentation on using its API for developers.