B2B e-Invoicing in the US
Businesses active in the US know that for electronic invoicing, uptake is not on the same level as compared to payment automation. The EDI 810 invoice syntax, a 50 year old pre-Edifact message based on ANSI X12 standard, is still a common exchange format. And no, sending PDF’s by e-mail is not what we consider e-invoicing.
BPC and the definition of an e-invoice interoperability framework
But also in the US there has been a demand for improved efficiency accessible to business of all sizes. Business Payments Coalitions (BPC) is an organization to promote greater adoption of electronic (B2B) payments, remittance data and invoices. BPC has published a standard for e-Invoice Exchange Framework, which is in line with the Global Interop Framework standard (gifwork.io) as being implemented by Peppol and EESPA. The report can be downloaded here: e-Invoice Exchange Framework – Approach to Managing a Federated Registry Services Model in a Four-Corner Network (PDF)
What then are the differences between EESPA, Peppol and BPC? All of them have implemented the same building blocks, although some have a newer version:
- SMP version 2 compared to SMP 1.0
- XHE envelope replacing SBDH
One significant difference is the participant registration (SMP to SML) where BPC designed for a federated governance, compared to a centralized ‘ticketing’ agency for EESPA and Peppol.
The payload (the definition of the invoice), will be XML in UBL syntax. The BPC profile is derived from PINT (Peppol International Invoice), so also here lots of familiarities.
BPC market pilot
After successful completion of a proof of concept, The e-invoice exchange framework initiative is targeted to continue work through establishment of a governance group and completion of an in-market pilot in late 2022 and early 2023 to stand up the framework.
3 waves have been defined, with participation of corporates (suppliers and buyers) and service providers. Service providers provide BPC network access for sending or receiving documents. Some service providers do provide SMP hosting publishing the registries of participating corporate,
ViaAdValvas and BPC
AdValvas Europe, being heavily involved in EESPA and GIF and as well an early adopter of Peppol services, has registered as service provider for Wave1. The ViaAdValvas platform also provides support for virtual access points, being used by other service providers.
As AdValvas and BPC are supporting the same global interop framework standard (GIF – see GIFworks.io), pilot participation was a non-brainer. For AdValvas customers, this means with a single ticket access to all networks is opened. AdValvas acts as a bridge between the networks, translating addressing as well as document syntaxes to the different regional requirements.
For wave 1, the planning is to be finalized end of June. Businesses or service providers interested to follow-up on the results or wanting to participate, please use this contact-form.
Interop 2.0 @ AdValvas
AdValvas now provides access to three network instances that are based on the Global Interoperability Framework (GIF). Besides being early adopter of Peppol and for EESPA having defined the interop standard, now support for BPC has been added. We could focus on the differences between these implementations, but in fact it is the similarities that make it a scalable and viable framework standard.