Magazine article American Banker

Viewpointe Offering a Cheap Connection for Small Banks

Magazine article American Banker

Viewpointe Offering a Cheap Connection for Small Banks

Article excerpt

Byline: WILLIAM WADE

Viewpointe LLC, which mainly serves large banks, is making its image exchange system accessible to very small financial companies.

The New York company is expected to announce today that it has developed a software suite that lets banks to send it check images through a secure Internet connection.

Banks currently send Viewpointe images in two ways. Its 11 large bank owners use dedicated lines to send images that are stored in its large archive. (These banks settle payments between themselves using an image sharing model.)

Other banks can settle payments with the 11 large banks, and each other, by using the Pointe2Pointe image exchange service, which also requires dedicated connections.

Diane Scott, Viewpointe's chief strategy officer and chief sales, marketing, and product officer, said the cost of installing and maintaining these connections makes Pointe2Pointe a poor fit for small financial companies.

The new software is aimed at "the very smallest second-tier companies and third-tier companies," she said, which will send fewer than 75 million check images a year.

"Now is the time for all institutions to drive the paper out of their systems," said Ms. Scott.

Many small banks have expressed interest in using Viewpointe's exchange service but do not have the resources to support a direct connection, she said. "There are only so many resources to go around," and this software would make it simple to reach Viewpointe.

It should take about a month for a banking company to install and test the software, Ms. Scott said.

No companies have agreed to use the software, she said, but about two dozen have expressed interest in the idea of a low-cost, Internet link. "We have quite a pipeline."

Users will pay a fee based on the volume of images they deliver to Viewpointe. Pointe2Pointe users pay higher fees, which are also based on volume. …

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