Nationwide Building Society have announced that it has invested in Ordo, an innovative payment request service launching later this year that connects billers to payers using apps and secure messaging, putting billers and their customers back in control of their payments.

Ordo protects businesses and their customers from invoice and payments fraud by allowing businesses to simply and securely send payment requests (known as ‘smart requests’) directly to their customers via the Ordo app. The customer is immediately notified they’ve received a smart request which they can view, and when they are ready, quickly and easily make payment through the app. Ordo uses Open Banking and Faster Payments to make the payment, bank account to bank account, meaning businesses get their money instantly and customers know where they are with their finances in real time.

Ordo’s design means that there is no need to share any bank account details between billers and customers, and the biller always gets back the reference they provided with their received payment. Ordo will also allow businesses to include an invoice attachment as part of the end-to-end encrypted message.

While many people happily pay their regular bills by Direct Debit or card, these don’t always suit everyone. There are also those one-off payments, such as paying a builder or the window cleaner. Ordo is perfect for these situations. Ordo is simple, swift and secure; it ensures that businesses, especially small and medium businesses for whom cash flow is key, can receive their hard-earned income into their account directly, instantly and cost effectively, but also keeps the payer in control of their bills and payments.

Ordo have applied for funding from Pool D of the Alternative Remedies Package Capability and Innovation Fund, which aims to improve the financial products and services available to UK SMEs. A successful bid will mean that Ordo can accelerate the development and roll-out of it’s financial technology to SMEs, delivering Ordo’s benefits more quickly to UK small business and their customers.

The team behind Ordo have a huge amount of payments, telecoms and networks experience. Most recently, they were part of the leadership team at the Faster Payments Scheme delivering the new access model that doubled the number of institutions able to directly connect to the system, pioneering access for challenger banks and other payment institutions.

The investment is the latest deal from Britain’s biggest building society’s as part of a £50 million Venturing Fund designed to create partnerships in which the Society and the start-ups share knowledge and expertise. As part of the fund, Nationwide is making strategic investments in and partnering with early stage start-ups exploring innovative products and services that could provide real benefits for the Society’s members in the future.

Tony Prestedge, Deputy Chief Executive at Nationwide Building Society, said: “Ordo helps businesses gets invoices paid while at the same time allowing consumers to maintain control of how and when they pay their bill. This seemed a natural fit for Nationwide as a brand who helps its members manage their money and who itself later this year is entering the business banking market to offer an alternative for small and medium size businesses to the big banks.”

CEO and co-founder of Ordo, Craig Tillotson, said: “We are delighted to have an investment from an organisation that shares our vision of making a positive difference to the financial lives and wellbeing of people, businesses, particularly SMEs, and communities. Nationwide’s investment is not just about the money, although that will really help us to make Ordo a reality, but demonstrates the appeal of our innovative proposition. This is a great opportunity for SMEs and their customers, and will deliver significant benefits to the economy as whole.”

The Venturing Fund supports the Society’s recently announced multi-billion pound tech investment, which is designed to put the Society at the forefront of digital innovation. Technology is redefining how members want to be served and the Society is investing to stay ahead of expectations. The Society is investing a total of £4.1 billion in technology over the next five years.