Maybank-ABSS partnership to empower startups, micro SMEs
By Digital News Asia November 3, 2017
- ABSS looks to gain 50,000 Financio users in Singapore over the next 12 months
- Maybank Singapore, ABSS will launch a series of workshops tailored for micro SMEs
MAYBANK Singapore on Nov 2 announced a partnership with Asian Business Software Solutions (ABSS) to empower startups and micro SMEs in Singapore with Financio, a new and affordable cloud-based accounting solution that will boost productivity, drive collaboration and help businesses stay on top of their finances.
According to SPRING Singapore, 80% of SMEs are micro-businesses, which typically do not have access or the means to digital tools. In fact, only 64% of SMEs have made some form of technological change or adaptation in their business models.
Maybank has also observed that 58% of its SME customers manage their business’ accounting without professional accounting help, based on a poll that the bank conducted last year.
Many of the micro SMEs and startups still rely on manual record-keeping or Excel spreadsheets, which may impede their growth as most banks would require financial statements for their credit underwriting.
However, 96% indicated that they would consider changing business processes and adopt cloud-based solutions, for better record keeping and increased productivity.
With this partnership, Maybank’s SME customers will gain access to ABSS’ cloud-based and automated accounting software, Financio, which does not require any accounting knowledge to operate.
This will be especially helpful to small business owners who need cost-effective and automated accounting solutions.
Users can track sales, purchases and miscellaneous transactions through a simplified dashboard, and automatically generate financial reports and tax records or forward transactions to recipients via email and inventory tracking.
Payments can be facilitated via Maybank’s Business Internet Banking, allowing companies to better comply with accounting standards and improve their long-term credit worthiness, as well as enjoy ease of record keeping for tax filing purposes.
Through ‘Financio Connect’, businesses are also able to network, collaborate, share documents on the platform to further boost their market reach.
ABSS chief executive officer Paul Conway said: “We are delighted to work with Maybank Singapore to support the underserved micro SME community. These companies face challenges such as limited access to capital and manpower shortages, as well as mounting pressure to sustain and grow both domestically and globally.
“Our strategic partnership delivers an unabridged offering that will enable micro SMEs to save time and money, and focus on delivering value for their customers.”
ABSS fully believes in the opportunity for micro SMEs to drive growth in local economies, and is looking to gain 50,000 Financio users in Singapore over the next 12 months.
“Micro SMEs are the economic drivers and job creators in Singapore. We want to ensure they understand how to perform data-driven decisions on financial management and optimise their business operations in this digital economy,” concluded Conway.
19 Degree Pte Ltd, a Singapore based firm specialising in aircon installation and services has subscribed to Financio’s premium service to manage their financials.
Howard Tiong of 19 Degree said: “As a small business, our accounting practice starts and ends with a basic Excel spreadsheet. However, as our business growth started to accelerate, we realised that we could not keep up with this rigorous process manually.
“Financio has allowed us to streamline our annual filing requirements for IRAS in 2016 which can take up to 250 hours, to just under 60 hours, effectively saving 190 man hours, or 76% of the time spent.
“In addition, a marked trait for Financio is its affordability – it has given us cost-savings of over 98% or S$6,500 a year, which would be spent on hiring a freelance accountant and deploying a different but more expensive accounting software for SMEs.
“Financio is also able to offer our CEO an overview of our financials at a glance and on the go, and he can now focus his efforts on customers and expanding the business,” added Tiong.
The cost-effective online accounting software is the latest service being offered to one of Maybank’s key customer segments in Singapore.
“We started our SME business in 2014, which has remained an integral part of our retail business. We have seen growth of 30% per year in terms of our customer base/accounts and revenue contribution from this portfolio in FY2016.” said Alvin Lee, head, Community Financial Services, Maybank Singapore.
“In line with the ambitions of our customers to grow through digitalisation and regional expansion, we believe this partnership is timely and relevant for entrepreneurs who are constantly improving their operating and business models to enhance their competitiveness and productivity.”
In addition, Maybank Singapore and ABSS will be launching a series of workshops tailored for micro SMEs, covering diverse topics such as financial management, data security, regulatory compliance updates and creating best practices for small business owners which they can bring back for their own business.