Fin-Force Selects Smart Investigate for Payments™ for Best-Practice International Payment Investigations

Sibos 2006, Sydney, Australia, 9 October 2006: Fin-Force, a third-party white-label processor of payments and cheques, on behalf of European banks, has chosen Smart Investigate for Payments from Pegasystems Inc. (Nasdaq: PEGA), the global leader in unified business process and rules technology, to fully automate its investigation processes for payments and cheques. The organisation will use Pegasystems' industry-leading solution to increase the straight-through processing (STP) rates of investigations thereby reducing operational expenses, whilst also providing multi-channel, real-time service, including Web-based self-service, to its financial institution customers.

Brussels-based Fin-Force, originally set up as an autonomous division of KBC Group in response to increasing competition in the European payments industry, is today a fully independent company, with additional shareholders such as DZ Bank and Rabobank and new customers including CBC, KBC Netherlands, KBC London, Rabobank, Equens and a number of Central European banks. "As we are expanding, we recognised the need to put in place the latest best-practice investigations processes," says Mr. Eddy Bex, Chief Acquisition Officer, Fin-Force.

The company already had several years' positive experience working with Pegasystems and saw the new solution as best suited to meeting its demanding requirements. "Smart Investigate for Payments has already been deployed in a number of European banks and is recognised as a proven industry-standard open solution," he confirms. "Moreover, because Smart Investigate for Payments is certified by SWIFT for SWIFTNet Exceptions and Investigations (E&I), it gives us the opportunity to participate in the E&I initiative in the future without additional investment."

Rules-based solution

Smart Investigate for Payments is built on the SmartBPM Suite, Pegasystems' rules-driven business process management (BPM) software suite. Importantly, it enables businesses to rapidly deploy and easily manage process-centric solutions, which, says David Wells, vice president and managing director, EMEA, Pegasystems, "helps narrow the gap between business goals and execution for Fin-Force and other large enterprise organisations."

"By managing both business process execution and business rule guidelines, it empowers enterprises to manage the full life-cycle of work day-to-day, whilst at the same time enabling continuous improvement," he adds. "Its unique enterprise integration approach — combining a graphical solution development environment, flexible execution engine and management dashboard — gives them vital control over such critical success factors as productivity, quality, risk and compliance."

Greater pressures

Many banks today are reviewing their existing systems, as ageing payments processing engines come under increasing regulatory and commercial pressures. As part of SEPA (Single European Payments Area), for example, banks will have to align charges for international payments with those for national payments.

At the same time, through SWIFT and other industry initiatives, the banking community is looking to develop solutions which will meet the growing demands from corporate customers for additional services within sophisticated end-to-end payments processes. "By assisting in meeting these unprecedented financial pressures, Fin-Force enables banks to take advantage of the cost savings offered by infrastructure pooling," confirms Mr. Eddy Bex.

"Critically, as part of this, Smart Investigate for Payments helps provide better, more personalised customer service, for example by enabling corporate customers to initiate an investigation themselves and monitor its progress through to resolution."

The system, which is now live with KBC, CBC and Equens, was implemented on-budget and will be rolled out to other customers over the next 12 months. "We have been delighted with the way that the joint Pegasystems/Fin-Force team has worked closely together throughout," says Mr. Bex, "in order both to meet our tight timescales — including the successful integration of seven years' legacy data — and to optimise the benefits of this mission-critical investment."

For his part, Wells believes that "the Pegasystems' flexible open systems approach offers the ideal support for Fin-Force to provide first-class payments solutions for banks across Europe."

About Pegasystems

Pegasystems (NASDAQ: PEGA) develops strategic applications for marketing, sales, service, and operations. Pega’s applications streamline critical business operations, connect enterprises to their customers seamlessly in real-time across channels, and adapt to meet rapidly changing requirements. Pega’s Global 3000 customers include many of the world’s most sophisticated and successful enterprises. Pega’s applications, available in the cloud or on-premises, are built on its unified Pega 7 platform, which uses visual tools to easily extend and change applications to meet clients’ strategic business needs. Pega’s clients report that Pega gives them the fastest time to value, extremely rapid deployment, efficient re-use, and global scale. For more information, please visit us at www.pega.com.

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