How the debt crisis is affecting SME’s and retailers

Debt Crisis looming for SME businesses in SA

Debt Crisis looming for SME businesses in SA

When it comes to mitigating risks, SME’s need to invest in a credit check and ID verification tool that can help them determine whether they are investing in a mutually beneficial partnership with potential customers and business partners. As any business owner knows, time are tough – but new research shows that things might get worse before they start getting better.

A recent debt survey done by Fin24 has shown that a mere 2.06% (647) of over 32 000 respondents have no debt. Over two thousand people participated in the survey, which also showed that almost 42% (12 522) respondents spend 80% of their income on repaying debt. Almost 2 800 people spend their whole income on debt, while 2 500 people have debt repayments which exceed their income.

These are significant stats and figures for anyone who’s trying to run a business in South Africa. Credit checks and ID verifications are beneficial for SME’s for a number of reasons, says Leon van der Merwe, Business Development Manager and Anti-Fraud specialist at pbVerify.

“Besides the high number of South African consumers who can’t actually afford to take on more debt, there’s also a risk of ID fraud,” explains van der Merwe before adding that the Fin24 survey also revealed that many people were turning to micro lenders and using their retail accounts and credit cards to simply survive.

“Over 50% of the respondents of this survey earn between R10 000 and R30 000 per month, which shows that it’s not necessarily low LSM groups who are dealing with unmanageable debts,” says van der Merwe.

Managing risk starts with doing research about new business partners and consumers. If you want a credit check and ID verification tool that will help you manage your risks, learn more about pbVerify today.

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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.

pbVerify helps financial services companies become FICA compliant

identity_verificationFICA compliancy for financial services:

If you’re a financial services company in South Africa, did you know there are steps you must take in order to become FICA compliant? You have probably heard about the legislation passed by the Financial Intelligence Centre entitled FICA – or Financial Intelligence Centre Act; the purpose of this legislation is to provide further transparency for financial services companies throughout the country in order to eradicate money laundering, scams, corruption and dishonest business practices.

Essentially, financial services companies such as micro-lenders, auto loan companies and home loan companies must reassess their entire client list in order to ensure that all clients’ identities and finances can be verified. Think of it as a sweeping credit check to everyone in the existing database – it’s a way to identify and handle anyone who poses a potential problem to your company.

You can use pbVerify to help your company become FICA compliant:

  • Online credit checks. Need to find out your clients’ complete credit history? It’s easier than ever before with pbVerify. Our system is user-friendly and efficient, and you’ll have instant access to the complete financial information that you need.
  • Risk management and risk assessment. FICA legislation requires all financial services companies to reassess their books. In addition to re-evaluating current clients, pbVerify can also help you make an informed decision when it comes to taking on new debtors. In this competitive business climate, you need to be certain that you’re making the right decision and not getting involved with people or companies that have questionable financial histories.
  • ID Verification. Our online ID verification solutions and ID-verify API (Application Programming Interface) are in use by some of the country’s largest financial institutions, retailers and system integrators for FICA compliancy and other identification solutions. Our XML data can integrate with almost any platform and provide a fast, but stable platform to build real-time intelligence into your systems with automated consumer ID information on-demand.     

Enlist the services of pbVerify today and your company will be on its way to being fully FICA compliant. In the end, FICA benefits everyone as it aims to eradicate dishonest business practices, money laundering, fraud and scams. Contact us today or visit our website to learn more about pbVerify.

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