Some large financial companies are offering electronic payment systems for corporations making recurring payments to their suppliers, but the Internet banking outsourcer Online Resources Corp. is aiming at payments for the little guy.
The Chantilly, Va., company announced Monday that its eCommerce Services has developed a disbursement system focused on small, often one-time payments by companies to consumers.
Robert R. Craig, an executive vice president at Online Resources and the general manager of eCommerce Services, said the technology, which the company began offering to large billers late last year, is based on the "pay anyone" capabilities of its online bill payment software, which sends paper checks to billers that cannot accept electronic payments.
"We realized we could turn that around and send payments to consumers, as well," Craig said in an interview Tuesday.
Typical uses include refunds of overpayments, rewards, card balance transfers, insurance claims and flexible spending account reimbursements, he said.
Online Resources said five major billers, including DirecTV Group Inc., have agreed to use the system. Other users are in the credit card and mortgage industries.
Aaron McPherson, the research manager of payments at Financial Insights, a unit of International Data Group Inc., said Online Resources' system could reduce payments costs for users.
"Anything you have to do once is going to be the most expensive thing," McPherson said. "To the extent that you can automate any piece of it, you should be able to save some money."