In a development that is reportedly considered to be a banking first in the Middle East, HSBC has rolled out virtual debit cards for United Arab Emirates (UAE) companies, according to a press release posted on Zawya.
The rollout strengthens the bank’s resolve to trailblazing digital improvements to satisfy the increasing demand for payment offerings that are more flexible, according to the release.
HSBC Regional Head of Commercial Cards, Middle East North Africa and Turkey Kailash Nair said in the release that the cadence of digital adoption by UAE companies has sped up during the last year and there is heightened demand for payment channels that are more flexible.
“Launching Virtual Debit Cards is a prime example of the bank’s digital upgrades in action, by which we are able to bring to our clients more choice in making B2B payments,” Nair said in the announcement.
Virtual debit cards from HSBC run on the Visa platform and make tokens, or single-use card numbers, for every transaction. Payment is debited straight from the current account of the business cardholder. According to the announcement, virtual debit cards add to the current collection of HSBC commercial cards such as virtual credit cards.
Shahebaz Khan, general manager, UAE for Visa said in the announcement that the company is witnessing strong demand for solutions that assist companies with more effectively handle cash flow, heighten back-office efficiencies and provide payment to vendors simply and safely with the quick uptake of online business-to-business (B2B) payments.
“We are excited to expand our collaboration with HSBC and together launch Virtual Debit Cards — the first virtual commercial debit offering by a global bank — that will make it easier for businesses to make e-commerce payments to suppliers while enjoying the security of tokenisation technology,” Khan said in the announcement.