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Self-Service Cash Collection and Biometrics Are Key Topics at International Forum in Moscow

The 10th International PLUS Forum “Cash Circulation + Self-Service. Banking and Retail” ended in Moscow. The financial experts analyzed the cash circulation system, presented the results of large-scale projects, outlined the current issues and challenges for the industry development.

“Among the banking trends discussed at the forum, the most relevant in this market are self-service cash collection and biometrics,” said Kirill Ovsiannikov, Marketing Head of Penkių kontinentų bankinės technologijos (BS/2), part of Penki kontinentai group. He took part in the forum with the Head of Business Support BS/2 Daniel Fukson and shared his impressions of the event.

– What were the main goals of the forum? What was included in its program?

– The current situation and prospects for the development of cash circulation, the payment industry are the main topics of this event. This year the audience reached a record high — over 1,500 delegates. Round tables and the latest technologies were held during the forum, where 75 Russian and foreign companies presented their products and solutions (Diebold Nixdorf, Glory, Profindustry, SAGA Technologies, SFOUR, Deep 2000, and many others).

– What are the most interesting topics of the forum?

– The first topic with the most interesting presentation, as I think, is self-service cash collection. Profindustry with Gazprombank covered the topic of this popular phenomenon. Its essence is that representatives of various organizations make deposits through special devices, which are automatically reflected on their bank accounts. Various interested sides were involved during the project presentation: equipment manufacturer, service provider (Gazprombank), various types of retailers (Magnit, Auchan chains, and Gazprom gas station network), as well as a collection service. Self-service cash collection provides an opportunity to reduce cash costs and increases security.

This trend is not new for our company: we implement integrated solutions for financial institutions and retail chains. But the scale of the projects of our Russian colleagues is impressive.

The second topic gaining popularity is the development of biometric technologies. The forum included presentations on applying these technologies, the single biometric data collection system, and the plans of Sberbank (Russia) to introduce authentication of ATM users by face-recognition. Today, biometrics is a reliable method of authentication of the bank’s clients and service staff and collectors.

– Was the cashless economy a topic of discussion?

– Of course. Representatives of the global company Mastercard and local technology leaders, such as Yandex.Money talks about a cashless economy, emphasizing the importance of simplifying payment methods for users. However, there are no prerequisites for a decrease in cash flow in Russia. Yes, banknotes of 100 and 200 rubles disappear from circulation. They are replaced by thousandth and two- thousandth banknotes. There is an increase in the value of the money supply circulating in the country. According to the Goznak and the Central Bank of Russia, this trend is logical for countries with high inflation. In short, cash does not disappear in the country.

The new trend is that customers use ATMs not only for CASH OUT but also for CASH IN function. People understand that it is much easier to pay for tickets, goods, and services from a bank account. In this aspect, non-cash payments are a kind of driver for the legalization of hidden incomes. Users perceive ATMs as a channel of communication with the bank to receive the expanded set of services.

– How did the forum surprise you?

– Perhaps, there were not enough representations of companies developing and implementing the software solutions for cash flow control and cash collection management. They were not presented either in reports or at exhibitions.

Nevertheless, we met the representatives of Diebold Nixdorf Russia. We are united by a great experience of a successful partnership. Our colleagues presented a new model of ATM – CS 4020. I am sure that this impressive device can become a real bestseller.

– How useful is it for the company to take part in such events?

– International forums are always rich in new meetings and knowledge. They allow sharing experiences and finding new partners. Russia is a trendsetter in many ways, not only for the CIS but also for the European Union. Due to various factors, the Russian market is an excellent stress test platform for new technologies in the banking sector. Based on the identified pros and cons, innovative solutions can be realized in other countries – Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, and other regions our group operates. Such an event is an opportunity to see how theoretical projects get their practical development and application in a rather aggressive and stressful environment.

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