Oman Arab Bank offers new business services through smart card

Oman Arab Bank recently rolled out a Visa Smart Commercial Card.
New banking services offered by the Oman Arab Bank (OAB) may help companies to achieve greater control of their supply chains while minimizing the hassle and nuisance of making various types of payments.

The Oman Visa Smart Commercial Card, introduced earlier this month, can be used anywhere in the country. OAB says the card's services are “designed to reduce administrative costs and simplify the purchase-to-pay process while giving companies enhanced capabilities when managing their business transactions.”

One of the biggest features of these cards is the ability to set spending restrictions and transaction limits by the day or month, or per transaction.

Although other banks such as HSBC offer “management control” services that put caps on certain types of spending, OAB’s system seems somewhat unique in its design.

“The new OAB Visa Smart Commercial Card(s) are secure, efficient and uncomplicated, providing organizations with the perfect tool to streamline their purchasing and procurement practices.” Fahd Amjad, OAB's general manager of retail banking companies, said in a press release. “Companies can choose to restrict payments to any merchant they choose, whether online or offline, by implementing a variety of controls as well as having the ability to monitor the cardholder’s activity.” 

In an age of automation, these services can be extremely valuable to businesses.

“Automation keeps getting better.” John Angelis, an assistant professor of management at Elizabethtown University in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, told the Gulf News Journal. “ERP is more automated. Banks are under pressure to be more automated.”

Talking about the general business environment built by advances in cloud technology, cardless payment and other new technologies, Angelis explained how industries are pressured to innovate and what that might mean in the future. He pointed to controversies over merchant services that banks now provide to big retail companies and other firms, where those firms are looking for, and in some cases demanding, convenience and automation as well as reasonable cost when it comes to transaction management.

Angelis also explained how large companies are trying to handle many small transactions each day.

“For these smaller transactions, there are a lot of attempts to automate.” Angelis said.

He pointed out, however, that the more automation there is, the less “human-level checking” is done.

The issue of automation seems especially important to OAB executives. Ahmed Gaber, Visa general manager for Oman, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait,and Bahrain, recently discussed Visa’s commitment to lead the development of online payment systems to stay ahead of the curve while many people are moving from old cash-based transactions to new card and smart payment methods.

“The partnership with Oman Arab Bank reinforces Visa’s commitment to create a safe payment network that enhances cardholder security while giving consumers an easy and efficient way to manage their finances.” Gaber said. 


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