Alex Dossche

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Digital business passport opens door to far-reaching digital transformation

There is no way around it: the driving force behind the increasing digitization of our society and economy is unfortunately a deadly virus this year. All companies need to adapt their online business to the growing demands of electronic commerce. There is an increasing need therefore for a reliable – read: verified and therefore legitimate – digital corporate identity. With TruliUs, our latest solution for corporate identities, Isabel Group is now addressing this crucial need too.

Whether out of sheer necessity or otherwise, the digital transformation of our economy is inevitably giving rise to new challenges. We would rather talk about opportunities in this context: the approach to these new challenges has invariably led to real improvements for our customers in the past. These have generally taken the form of simplified, faster, more efficient and therefore less expensive business processes.

 

Know Your Customer (KYC): complex, time-consuming and expensive

A new challenge – correction: opportunity – for many companies that have taken the step to electronic business in the meantime, is the digital ‘onboarding’ of customers. Or to put it literally, getting those customers on board. In concrete terms, this raises the question of how you can guide a potential business customer online, i.e. without any physical interaction, through the process of customer onboarding in a legitimate, reliable manner. For example, how can you check whether that business customer is really who he claims to be? How can you ensure that the person who introduces himself online as a business leader is one in fact? And last but far from least, how can you check whether a person has been duly authorized to represent his company to the outside world and possibly to carry out a purchase?                                                    

A correct KYC validation must be carried out during customer onboarding in order to be able to answer all these questions. However, KYC is a complex, time-consuming and therefore expensive procedure par excellence. In some sectors, it can take days or even weeks to re-board a new customer in a verisimilar manner. This is of course at odds with the acceleration implied by the digitization trend.

 

Neither fraud- nor future-proof

The current KYC processes in the B2B market also suffer from other drawbacks. For example, many companies still work with forms to be completed on their websites. Apart from the fact that this is not a customer-friendly solution, because customers have to enter the same information over and over again, there is also a real risk of fraud. Can you actually count on  the data that a customer leaves behind online being truthful? Even if you assume that the customer is sincere, human errors can always creep into forms completed online.

The current KYC processes are not only susceptible to fraud, they also offer companies only a snapshot and are unfortunately not future-proof. Who can guarantee for instance that the data provided by a new customer online months ago, which you subjected to a thorough KYC check at that time, are still correct today? Conversely, who can guarantee that the person mandated today as a manager for a specific company will still be exercising the same mandate in a few months’ time? Most companies are unfortunately unable to request regularly the mandates of the persons with whom they want to do business online.

Companies that are digitally active are very often still struggling even with questions about the commitment of a new customer. The key question is of course how to complete an online sale while protecting your rights as a seller. This brings us back to the question of the mandates of the people at the company with whom you want to do business. In particular, do they have the mandate to commit to a purchase? Are they authorized and able to sign digital contracts on behalf of their company?

 

Standard for corporate identities

Earlier this year the Isabel Group announced a new solution that would improve the KYC process and thus the on-boarding of new business customers significantly. This solution, a ‘digital corporate identity platform’ for the B2B market, is now being rolled out. The name of the platform speaks volumes: TruliUs, i.e. “Truly us.”

With TruliUs, users get a secure digital business passport that enables them to complete online onboarding processes and transactions more easily — namely . without manual and time-consuming KYC checks. These are taken care of by our employees for your optimal convenience. In short, TruliUs stands for simplicity, efficiency, speed, safety, future-proofing and, last but far from least, cost savings.

As a fintech pioneer and the largest fintech group in Belgium, we aspire to make TruliUs the standard for corporate identities in the Belgian market for the long run. The temptation is great to mention TruliUs in the same breath as a digital identification app such as Itsme, which reinforces citizens’ identities. But TruliUs does much more than that. The platform connects companies that register their identity in TruliUs with companies that need verified data from the business customers with whom they want to do business digitally. In this way we create a new, open ecosystem through TruliUs, one that can ultimately form the cornerstone for the ongoing digitization of all those companies.

 

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