BANKING TECHNOLOGY | Staff Reporter, Singapore

Wincor Nixdorf puts a spotlight on the future of cash and digitalisation

Over 150 industry experts attended the International Management Seminar in Madrid.

With more consumers leaning towards digital banking, retail banks should move towards becoming agile, fast-moving technology adopters instead of just relying upon their inflexible, complex legacy systems in order to stay in the game. 

This is one of the main topics discussed at Wincor Nixdorf’s International Management Seminar held at the Silken Puerta America Hotel in Madrid from June 1 to 3, 2016. The event, which was attended by 150 experts from well-known retail banks and industry representatives, tackled the future of cash in an omni- and cross-channel world and how digital transformation is connecting the digital and physical worlds.

Christian Weisser, senior vice president of banking at Wincor Nixdorf, said: “Banks around the world are working to take rapid advantage of opportunities offered by digitalisation to improve their customer experience and achieve greater efficiency in bank operations.”

Weisser, however, noted that it is still the customer’s decision that sets the pace on how digital retail banks should be. Nonetheless, he discussed three strategies that banks can implement in order to find balance between traditional banking and digitisation.

First is co-locating, where banks can share location with a business (ex. supermarket, post office, etc.) to be where their customers are. Next is automation – automate whatever can be automated with self-service devices. And lastly, engagement, which means building a bridge that can be used to reach your customers by providing it in a way of assisted self-service. “Digitisation has a very big impact on Wincor Nixdorf and we have been working on the strategic issues in the past 2-3 years until now. We have recognised a long time ago that we have to move since innovative software and services are much more critical success factors for the business of banks and retailers,” said Reinhard Rabenstein, chief technology officer at Wincor Nixdorf.

He explained that the company needs to help its customers transform to the next level of digitisation, without neglecting the fact that hardware remains a key enabler. “Digitisation makes sense if you are enabling all the different channels for it. If you are still linked in the silobased architecture, then there is no way to makedigitisation successful. Banks need an omnichannel platform that will serve as an enabler for digitisation,” he added.

Two years ago, Wincor Nixdorf together with Commonwealth Bank of Australia jointly developed a payment tablet called Albert, a unique open ECO system that aims to bring merchant banks/ merchant acquirers closer to their merchants, and merchants closer to their customers. 

Albert also provides a global gateway for payment transactions together with a marketplace for high quality value added apps and services providing new business opportunities beyond payments. “Digitisation means you have to implement a multi-touch point platform that allows you to support the customer in a completely different way,” Rabenstein said.

Cash and cash recycling
Despite indications that the world is moving towards a cashless society with the rise of mobile and electronic payments, speakers at the conference believe that cash will remain as the leading consumer payment type globally. “Cash is important for a number of societies. Ninety percent of payments in the Eurozone are still done in cash. You cannot ignore the fact that for SMEs and retailers, cash is still a big part of their daily life and operation,” Weisser said. 

Data from the Euromonitor International Global Cash Report showed that in 2015, eight out of ten transactions were still made using cash. Weisser explained that one of the most efficient ways of saving operational costs is for banks to provide cash recycling and deposit functionality.

“Cash remains an integral part of the economies in Asia Pacific, in both emerging countries or developed economies,” said Karsten Kemna, vice president for Asia- Pacific Banking at Wincor Nixdorf.

“Singapore is a classic example. With more than 2,700 ATMs around the island, demand for cash is ever increasing, especially during festive seasons. Banks need to optimize their cash ecosystem to improve customer experience while reducing cost.”

“According to RBR’s Global ATM Market and Forecasts to 2020 report1ATM withdrawals were strongest in the Asia-Pacific and Middle East and Africa regions. Banks are now gradually changing their ATMs from machines that can perform single function such as cash withdrawal to providing a variety of services, including cash and coin deposit, bill payment, account opening, as well as a touchpoint to seek assistance from a branch officer if required,” he added.

Apart from the interesting discussions on the latest banking trends, another highlight of the conference was the announcement of Wincor Nixdorf’s collaboration with Diebold. “Wincor Nixdorf is moving with confidence toward the business combination with Diebold. Digital transformation demands flexibility and innovation from banks and retail companies – and thus also from their technology partners,” said Eckard Heidloff, president and CEO of Wincor Nixdorf.

“Together, we are creating an IT powerhouse with a global reach, a company whose innovative power sets standards and that will be a reliable local partner to banks in dynamic times such as these. One of the new company’s innovative focal points will be the development of new software.” Heidloff explained that through the elimination of duplicate hardware development in the two companies, resources have been  freed that can now be used for the development of new software.

Wincor Nixdorf and Diebold
When asked about plans for the Asia-Pacific region after the merger with Diebold, Kemna noted that this merger will result in more solutions and value for the customers. “Our common vision with this business combination is to create a companythat will deliver fully integrated, transformative solutions to support branch automation, value-added services and omni-channel experiences. Additionally, we aim to create better solutions or more localised solutions for the Asia Pacific

Last November, U.S.-based ATM maker, Diebold made an offer to acquire Germany-based Wincor for the amount of $1.8 billion and the deal was finalised this March when Diebold gained shareholder approval. The combined firm will have a market share of around 34%, making it the largest maker of ATMs in the world based on units sold.

Best-in-class solutions
Three of Wincor Nixdorf’s products were showcased at the conference: the CINEO C2020, the Cash Cube, and the CINEO C4060. The CINEO C2020 is the next- generation banking system that allows customers to withdraw cash quickly, convenientlyand securely by using a smartphone or a near-field communications. It is the ideal solution for digital natives, as it only takes 16 seconds to complete a transaction.

Meanwhile, the Cash Cube, an innovative prototype developed, is an ATM that is controlled by an Android-base device. It is designed to do more than just pay out cash. With its multifunctional payment terminal, it can also be used to process cashless payments and the like. “The smartphone industry has already shown us what is possible when you combine a wide variety of applications with a customer touch point such as a mobile telephone. Transferring this approach to an ATM opens up new perspectives, including the development of new software,” Weisser said.

The third product is the CINCO C4060, a cash recycling system that is part of Wincor’s Cash Cycle Management Solutions portfolio. Its core element includes the banknote storage concept, which makes it possible for banks and retailers to interchange one and the same cassette between all systems in the CINEO cash series. 

1Data source: The information is from RBR press release published in January 2016

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