Are cash-strapped consumers affecting your business’s credit risk?

Know your customer by investing in an online credit check, consumer trace and ID verification tool

Know your customer by investing in an online credit check, consumer trace and ID verification tool

Whether you earn a salary, run a business or are in charge of risk management services for your company – you probably know that people are increasingly strapped for cash. Even though the dreaded January has passed (where people are usually a bit more broke than usual thanks to over-spending during the holiday season), it seems like many South Africans are still struggling to keep their heads above water. Why?

According to the latest TransUnion Consumer Credit Index (CCI), consumer credit health deteriorated at a slower pace in the fouth quarter of 2013 than in the previous four quarters, but it is still under pressure. This, coupled with rising food and petrol prices (as well as the hike in interest rates that was announced towards the end of January), means it’s not surprising that people are struggling to pay their bills.

“Unsecured loan approval rates have moderated, indicating that credit grantors are generally applying a more conservative approach to mitigate their risk and have, for now at least, been able to stabilise their loan defaults. Much will depend on whether overall economic growth and pressures in the job market stabilise in 2014, and this is far from certain at this point,” commented Transunion CEO, Geoff Miller.

In order to minimize your business’ financial risk, you need to know exactly who you’re dealing with before you process a transaction or extend a line of credit, explains Leon van der Merwe, Business Development Manager at local credit check company pbVerify.

Know your customer by investing in an online credit check, consumer trace and ID verification tool

“Fin24 recently reported that in aggregate, consumers haven’t been able to reduce their credit card utilisation since 2010. If your company relies on payments from South African consumers – which most do – it would be wise to invest in a fool-proof ID verification and online credit check tool so that your employees can make sure they are dealing with clients that would be able to honour their commitment of repaying any outstanding debt, fees or bills to your company,” explained van der Merwe.

pbVerify’s online credit check system allows you to know your customer by giving you 24.7 access to current Consumer and Business credit information. Whether you need to verify the identities of consumers, do background credit checks on consumers and/or businesses, verify company and director registration detail, verify VAT registrations, verify Deeds information on properties or need to do pre-employment and academic background verifications, pbVerify does it all. The best part is that pbVerify is one of the most cost-effective solutions in South Africa, giving you the option to only pay for what you use (as well as the ability to process bulk consumer traces).

You can also, follow us on Twitter and Like us on Facebook to stay updated with all the news and new solutions here at pbVerify.

Author: Google

How the deteriorating credit health affects South Africa’s retail sector

TransUnion’s Consumer Credit Index has declined to 43.6% in the second quarter of 2013 from 43.8% in the first quarter of the year. TransUnion, which is an international leader in credit and information management, says that this drop in the Consumer Credit Index (CCI) reflects a deteriorating consumer credit health. According to TransUnion, “Credit Health” refers to the ability of consumers to service existing credit obligations within the constraints of monthly household budgets.

retail“The fall in the CCI reflects escalating consumer loan impairments and sustained growth in distressed borrowing, both indicators of rising household financial stress,” explained TransUnion in a statement to the press.

What is the Consumer Credit Index?

The CCI is a unique indicator of consumer credit health based on a 100-point scale. Deterioration in credit health is represented by an index below 50.0 and an index above 50.0 indicates improving credit health.

“Consumer credit health has now been deteriorating for four straight quarters and the risk of deterioration in the credit cycle has risen materially,” commented TransUnion Africa President, Geoff Muller.

“Credit-sensitive retail sectors need to become increasingly vigilant to the risks this trend poses to their business,” said Muller.

How pbVerify can help

pbVerify, an innovative web service, is already helping many companies in the credit-sensitive retail sector. Our consumer tracing, credit check, ID verification and business credit check tools make it quick, affordable and easy to do the thorough research that is needed before taking on new clients.

“In a tough global economy, it becomes even more important for retailers to mitigate risks. A deteriorating consumer credit health – while not permanent – shows that companies need to be more vigilant with regards to issuing credit and making sure they’re on top of all consumer repayments,” says Leon van der Merwe, Business Development Manager and Anti-Fraud specialist at pbVerify.

If you want to find out how pbVerify can help your business mitigate risks, contact us today. We’ll give you a demonstration on how our system is helping hundreds of other South African businesses.

 

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Make smart and informed Risk Management decisions with pbVerify

pbVerify Risk Management

pbVerify Risk Management tools

Understanding risk management is essential for the success of your business, as you don’t want to enter into business deals with individuals or other businesses that have sordid financial pasts. Unfortunately, too many honest businesses fall prey to dishonest or irresponsible parties that dont’ fulfil their end of the business deal, whether it’s failure to repay a loan, defaulting on payments or being dishonest about credit histories, and this ends up hurting profits, productivity and reputation.

If you haven’t heard about pbVerify, you’re missing out on an excellent risk management tool that’s been specifically designed for businesses like yours. After registering for free, you’ll have instant access to detailed financial information, credit histories, public trace record information and more. There’s no monthly fee and you only pay per search, and we can supply you with reports on individuals, companies, closed corporations, consumers and properties in South Africa.

What type of companies need a good risk management tool like pbVerify?

  • Credit Grantors (any business selling on account). Whether your business does business with other Businesses or with consumers or both, we have the perfect solution for you. Connect your business to instant, online access to credit and registrar information from all three major credit bureaus, CIPC (previously CIPRO) and Department of Home Affairs (DHA).
  • Real estate companies. Fully vet potential renters and tenants when you use pbVerify. Above all else, you want to be certain that you aren’t putting your business at risk by entering into a business deal with individuals who have a history of not fulfilling their financial obligations.
  • Trace agents. Our consumer trace service is connected to more than 30 million consumer records in South Africa! If you need to locate consumers who have defaulted, this is the service for you.
  • System integrators.  If you need to verify the identity of a consumer, our widely-used system is the perfect tool to help you do so.

Whether doing business with an individual or another business, you want to do everything you can to ensure that it’s a wise choice. pbVerify allows you to make an informed decision.

To get more information about pbVerify, please visit our website today!

What customers are saying about Pitney Bowes’ pbVerify…

Customers across South Africa have been ecstatic about the quick, accurate solutions that pbVerify offers. If you need an online tracing, consumer or ID check solution, we’ve got the all-in-one tool for you.

pbVerify Customer Testimonials

What customers are saying about Pitney Bowes’ pbVerify

Here are a few testimonials from our clients;

Heilke Van Loon, Financial Manager at Borwa Financial Solutions, says that pbVerify definitely delivered on their promise about delivering quick and accurate online tracing solutions. Any business can sell a promise, but only service providers sell the performance of the promise. Pitney Bowes definitely belong to the latter bracket. All of the four managers who use this service in our company have been satisfied with the level of service; this including both turnaround times in attending to any issues, and pro-active support and product development initiatives,” says Heilke.

Kaajal Mackerduth from Genissis Cash Car Rental says that their company has found the online credit check system particularly useful.  “Thank you, Pitney Bowes, for the fantastic services received by our company on the pbVerify system,” commented Kaajal from Genissis Cash Car Rental.

“We are very happy with the service that our company has received from the pbVerify support team,” agreed Laurie Liebenberg from Liebenberg Opspoorders.

“The pbVerify system works very well. It helps us to determine if an ID book is valid,” said Vanessa from Convert Cash regarding pbVerify’s online identification check solutions.

Nicky Jardim-Mostert from Metal Industries Benefit Funds Administrators says they have been using the pbVerify ID verification tool for almost two years and they are still very satisfied with the ease-of-use and customer support that pbVerify offers. “pbVerify is very user friendly, accurate and all in real-time, which other databases cannot always offer! I would recommend this facility to any company – Metal Industries Benefit Funds Administrators,” says Nicky.

Interested in learning more about how our online consumer tracing tool has helped companies across South Africa do business? Then give us a call today on 011 516 9400 or visit www.pbverify.co.za.

Why finding outstanding debtors in SA is so hard… and how to solve the problem

tracing1Online Credit Check and Tracing has never been easier than with pbVerify. Any business owner will tell you that minimising risk and minimising loss are two extremely delicate components of running a successful business, and having a reliable consumer tracing system is part of the key to that success. You have the right to view the full and complete financial information of any consumers you do business with, but obtaining that information has been difficult in the past.

pbVerify was created with small to medium sized businesses in mind. In the past, if you wanted to run a consumer trace, it required subscriptions to all of the major credit check bureaus, which charge you costly monthly fees. There was no comprehensive, streamlined process that allowed you to get the information you need with a few clicks of the mouse… until now.

One appealing aspect of pbVerify is that it requires no monthly subscription; you simply pay per search! This saves you the expense of paying for access to multiple credit check bureaus that you seldom use and allows you to pay for only what you use. pbVerify requires no special software and it’s user-friendly and instant. With a few quick clicks of the mouse, you will be provided with all of the online search and trace information you need that is required to make informed business decisions.

Unfortunately, identity thefts, fraud, defaulting on payments or simply not making any payments are growing problems in today’s business environment. It’s essential that you have all of the information necessary in order to make smart decisions for your company, and pbVerify’s goal is to give all business owners a comprehensive, easy to use system that accomplishes just that.

Register with pbVerify today and start conducting online tracing searches instantly!

Online Deed search Tool for South Africa

Need a South African online Deeds search tool? If you need instant, accurate and up-to-date land registration information then it’s time to try out pbVerify. When you register (for free), you only pay per search – there are no monthly subscription fees and no registration costs whatsoever. As soon as you’ve signed up, you will be able to instantly search for any Deeds information you may require through an easy to use web interface.

Our online deeds search tool covers the following registration offices:

  • Pretoria
  • Johannesburg
  • Bloemfontein
  • Cape Town
  • Kimberly
  • King Williams Town
  • Pietermaritzburg
  • Umtata
  • Vryburg

Three reasons why our online deeds search tool is different

1: Online access

Our web-based deeds search portal is part of a web-based system that will also give your business instant access to Credit search, Trace and CIPC company information, adding real value to your business as a comprehensive risk management tool. All you need is internet access in order to sign up and get the information you need with the click of a mouse.

2: Simplicity

Our search tool is easy to use, thanks to the user-friendly web interface. All you need is the information of the person or company you are looking for, such as the following:

  • Individual – Date of Birth, Name or Surname
  • Company – Company Name
  • Deed Number
  • Sectional scheme unit – Scheme Name, Erf      Number, Unit number
  • Erf – Town name, Erf number
  • Farm – Registration division, Farm number,      Portion number
  • Exclusive Area (EUA) – Town name, Erf Number
  • Agricultural Holding – Holding name, Holding      Number

3: Instant, accurate results

Our online deeds search tool has instant access to all the information from the South African Deeds Registration database. You can specify any of the following search criteria:

Person Detail:

  • Name and Surname
  • ID Number
  • Deed Document Number
  • Multi- Owner and Share%
  • Purchase date
  • Micro Reference
  • Registration date

Properties Result:

  • Property Description
  • Scheme Name
  • Scheme number
  • Unit Number
  • Property Size (SQM)
  • Clearance Institution (Municipal)
  • Province
  • Purchase Price and Date

Bond and Document History

  • Bond Number
  • Bond Holder
  • Bond Amount
  • Bond Micro Reference
  • Bond Description

….and much, much more!

Whether you’re running a real estate business, you are a credit grantor (any business selling on account), construction company, law firm, tracing company, or property owner renting out properties, our online deeds search tool will work for you.

Sign up today – Its free to join by visiting www.pbverify.co.za

Consumer Trace: 3 Easy steps to find customers that have defaulted

In South Africa today, virtually any business needs to implement a sound consumer tracing system to find consumers that have defaulted on payments. Not only is this necessary in order to minimize risk and losses, but also to ensure the growth and prosperity of your business.

The problem that many businesses – as well as professional tracing companies – have is that a single consumer trace can be an expensive, complex process. Not only do you need subscriptions to all the major credit check bureaus (such as Transunion and XDS) to find various bits and pieces of information, but these subscriptions can also become expensive if it’s not something that you use on a continuous, regular basis.

It is for this reason that pbVerify has launched a comprehensive South African consumer tracing system that combines all the information that you are looking for into one easy-to-use platform. Besides being able to get all the info you need in one place, it’s also more cost-effective (for small companies as well as professional tracers) because there’s no pricey monthly subscription – you simply pay for each  consumer trace search you do.

Here’s how to do a consumer trace in THREE EASY STEPS with pbVerify:

Consumer Trace Step 1:

Register an obligation-free account at pbVerify. This gives you access to all the main credit and consumer bureaus in South Africa. The membership is completely free and you will only be billed per transaction when you use our consumer tracing system.

Consumer Trace Step 2:

Enter any of the following data on hand to initiate the trace:

  • ID Number
  • Passport number
  • Surname, Initial and Date of Birth
  • Telephone number (historic or current); Land line      (work or other)
  • Mobile number (historic or current)

Consumer Trace Step 3:

The following information will pop up on your screen:

  • Identity      information: Verified Names, Surname and ID number
  • Address/es:      Current and previous Physical and Postal
  • Telephone:      Land line/s and Mobile number/s
  • Employment Information and contact details

It’s really as simple as that. One of the reasons why many small businesses and tracing companies have switched to the pbVerify system is because the information we provide current and accurate. Any time a customer opens an account, the details are updated so that you have instant access to the most recent details of your customers.

Sign up for FREE and check out our consumer trace reports to see how quick and easy our consumer tracing system system works!

CREDIT CHECK

BE A SME, BUT THINK LIKE A CORPORATE

How a SME business can manage CREDIT RISK like a Corporate

Credit Check is an extremely helpful tool that allows businesses across South Africa to find out exactly what they are financially getting involved with before entering into any type of credit agreement. You don’t want to end up chasing around your debtors; the Consumer credit check system saves you time and money by preventing you from getting involved with individuals and the Business credit check with companies that have a history of defaulting on payments. It is your right to demand financial transparency whether it’s in relation to an individual credit check or a business credit check and it’s recommended to review all the information you can find before entering into any agreements or deals.

The Credit Check systems are designed with you in mind, as more and more businesses fall victim to scams and scam artists every year. In order to protect yourself and your financial well-being, it’s necessary to know the complete financial history of whomever you are doing business with. In the past it was easier for scam artists to cleverly erase or cover up their dodgy financial history, but with online credit check systems, businesses can be proactive in protecting themselves by ensuring they aren’t dealing with financially irresponsible parties.

How Credit check systems works

Start by digging into the individual or businesses’ financial background reports. Credit bureau data from TRANSUNION, XDS and EXPERIEN combined with data from CIPRO, SARS and the DEEDS OFFICE will prove to be very useful in uncovering any financial defaults and fraudulent information on credit applications and contracts. With these reports you will have access to business registrar and consumer identification information, which you should compare to the potential client’s credit application information to be sure that all the information matches up. You will also be able to see directors details, history, trade and bank history, business default information, listings and judgements containing all information recorded against that business or consumer.

Once you have all the necessary records in your possession and you’ve read and understood the information, you’ll be able to make an informed decision regarding how to move forward. Being proactive and protecting yourself and your business is the best way to defend against a likely defaulter.

For one the most comprehensive online SME Credit Check solutions in South Africa, visit www.PBVerify.co.za

Three easy steps to protect your business against bad debt

Three easy steps to protect your business against bad debt

All facts considdered.

– By Leon van der Merwe – Snr. Consultant at pbVerify

 

The Business Credit Report explained in 3 easy steps
Doing business in the SME (Small to Medium Enterprise) sector has become more complex and more “corporate” than ever before when it comes to protecting your piggy bank. A few years ago it was almost the norm to extend credit to clients on a mere handshake and the pressure to do sales sometimes lead to remarkably bad decisions to extend credit to the wrong people or businesses, but then the opposite has also proved its worth. Let’s take a moment to look at what can proactively be done to prevent bad debt, rather than chasing and tracing the ever illusive defaulters.

1 – Do some digging
Take the time to do some digging into potential customers’ personal and business credit reports. PBVerify provides a world of CREDIT BUREAU, CIPRO, SARS and DEEDS data that empowers you with information to make better decisions. Get the facts and figures required to make confident business decisions and protect your money, reduce liability and prevent fraud.

2 – Understand the information
There is no point in drawing a credit report if you do not understand the information you are looking at, or more importantly what you are looking for. Let’s focus today on the TransUnion Business Credit Profile obtainable to registered clients of pbVerify which will contain the following information:

Business identification information
Details of the registration of a particular business, including registration number, address, date of registration and any previous names that the business may have been registered under.

  • – Carefully examine this information and compare it to the client’s credit application information pertaining to the business name, registration number, address etc. Any differences in the comparison should be noted and further investigated.
  • – You can go one step further and do a CIPRO (Company and Intellectual Property Commission) Company and/or Director search to obtain real-time data direct from the registrar.

Bank history
Details of previous and current bankers and bank codes obtained on the business by TransUnion (ITC).

  • – Check for the appropriate bank codes related to previous amounts enquired for.

Bank Codes explained:
A = Undoubted for the amount of enquiry
B = Good for the amount of enquiry
C = Good for the amount quoted if strictly in the way of business
D = Fair trade risk for the amount of your enquiry
E = Figures considered too high
G = Paper occasionally dishonoured
H = Paper frequently dishonoured

Business default information
Negative information (non-payment of accounts information) recorded against a business by other subscribers held on the TransUnion database.

  • – It is important to realise that a credit report is much like a “criminal record”, meaning only negatives are recorded, a clear report in terms of Listings, Defaults and Judgements means the client has a clean credit record.

Principal details
Information on the principals of a business such as name, surname, ID number, as well as an indicator of adverse information (e.g. civil court record – ‘Y’or ‘N’).

  • – If a red (pbVerify report only) “Y” appears next to the principal’s (Directors and Members) detail, it means that there is a negative record recorded against this person in their personal capacity. It is highly recommended that you then draw a Consumer Credit Profile on this person to determine the extent and value of the adverse information.

Trade information
Business Payment information on the way a business pays its debts with other creditors.

Enquiry history
A history of enquiries that has been made on the business by other businesses over the past three years.

3 – Make an informed decision
Institute measures that specifically suits your organisation and resembles your organisation’s approach to acceptable risk. As impossible as it is to predict the future, the last thing you want to do is reject a potentially good client’s credit request because your measures are set without considering all facts. Even in today’s unemotional world of business, I believe personal relations should still count for something. Knowing your client is key, so by all means take the time to do some digging and gather facts, but also make time to get to know your clients, their business, goals and objectives; – and make an informed decision based on all facts considered. Accepting or rejecting a client’s request for credit is a simple denial or approval for doing business, taking into consideration the possible risks associated in doing so.

 No one can predict the future, but those with all-embracing information at hand – combined with some good business sense dramatically increases the odds of a successful future.

For more information on pbVerify, please contact 011 516 9400 or send an Email to support@pbverify.co.za

Pitney Bowes SA launches pbVerify

On the 1st January 2013, Pitney Bowes SA launched pbVerify – Online Credit, Trace and Deeds search services for small to medium sized enterprises (SME) on www.pbverify.co.za

pbVerify is a web-based system that was also designed to cater for Pitney Bowes’ pbSecure anti-fraud document security solution and is extremely feature-rich, providing businesses with instant access to various Credit check, Consumer trace and registrar information. The system was originally designed as an online credit vetting tool for businesses to do background credit checks and analysis of their debtors and prospective credit clients. Today the system features so much more, with added functionalities that include:

  • Business registration verification through CIPRO
  • Business Director verification through CIPRO
  • Business VAT number verification through SARS
  • Consumer ID verification through Home Affairs
  • Deeds Search (seven different types)

The system offers credit bureau reports from three of South Africa’s largest credit bureaus, namely:

The credit bureau searches include:

  • ID Verification
  • Consumer Trace
  • Consumer Credit Check
  • Business Credit Check

pbVerify also boast with one of the most comprehensive Consumer Trace systems on the South African market, used by tracing agents and businesses to locate Consumers and Directors whom have defaulted.

Part of the pbVerify offering also includes an Application Programming Interface (API) access to ID verification data on the Pitney Bowes Information System (PBIS) SOAP server that can integrate with any application. This allows system integrators instant live access to XML ID verification data.

For more information on pbVerify or pbSecure, please contact Leon van der Merwe, Senior Solutions Consultant at Pitney Bowes South Africa on 011 516 9400