Bendigo Bank boosts SME banking with Tyro tie-up

  • By Christine St Anne

Bendigo Bank has forged an agreement with Tyro Payments with “aspirations’ that its business banking will mirror the innovations of some of the big four. 

On Friday the bank announced a new alliance with Tyro Payments for it to become the bank’s exclusive merchant acquiring partner for its business banking customers.

Under the tie-up, Bendigo has consolidated seven of its existing providers  into one provider – Tyro. 

This new partnership will reduce the number of partners from seven to one.

Bendigo’s existing merchant acquiring services are currently delivered through a range of third parties who provide various hardware and software components for its product. 

However, under the agreement, a new co-brand has been developed - Bendigo Bank EFTPOS/eCommerce powered by Tyro - that will allow the bank to offer Tyro’s full range of products to its business customers, grow its capability and improve the overall customer experience.

While cost was a factor behind Bendigo’s decision to partner with Tyro, so too was the “pace of change” underpinned by the changing demands of business customers. 

“What we could see going forward was the pace of change that customers were demanding from us in payments. 

“It was going to require us to continue to invest significantly.  We started to explore the idea the partnering would be a better, more economic outcome for us, but also give a better customer experience,” Bendigo executive business banking Bruce Spiers said. 

In terms of what SMEs now want from the bank, Spiers recognised that expectations around payments has been impacted by recent disruptors. And while services like buy now, pay later are consumer driven, he said similar changes were happening in the SME sector.

“We are now seeing an ecosystem around, software integration between POS systems, accounting packages and banks is starting to evolve. 

“Those are the sorts of innovations that a specialist provider in the payment space can focus on providing. We are more focused on driving banking relationships. It is better for a bank like us to be a participant rather than a manufacturer of those services.”  

The new agreement with Tyro will support Bendigo Bank’s strategy of investing in capability and reducing complexity by providing more flexible, feature-rich payment solutions to business customers such as data insights. 

Spiers recognises that it is a similar approach taken by banks including the Commonwealth Bank and National Australia Bank.

CBA’s Albert terminal has been lauded as providing a number of services beyond payments while NAB’s QuickBiz offering provides quick loan approvals. 

“We have real aspirations for that and are keen to explore those options. We have to find ways to make those sorts of experiences that other banks are providing available to our customers.

“If we look at our customer base, we have a really strong connection to that sector through our existing branch network. What we want to do is better provide them with better experiences aound their payments and build a relationship around that.” 

The share price of Tyro closed at a record high of $4.15 on Friday following the announcement.