FINANCE NEWS: CafCash launches petty cash ATM card and e-payment plan

Mathew Little

CafCash, the banking service run by Charities Aid Foundation, is launching an ATM card and an electronic payment system.

The CafCash ATM card, introduced at the start of October, enables charity account holders to withdraw up to £100 a day from HSBC cash machines across the country.

"Our customers have been asking us for some time to provide them with a cash withdrawal facility to meet their petty cash needs," said Peter Mitchell, head of banking at CAF. "Now they are able to use their CafCash ATM card for all their day-to-day cash requirements."

This autumn the bank will also launch an electronic regular payment system to enable charity clients to pay recurring bills such as staff salaries from their current accounts.

It has operated a fax and post-based payment service since 1995, which currently transfers 9,000 regular payments from charities' current accounts every month, at a lower rate than mainstream banks. This service has now been extended to be available via email.

The new service has no set-up fee and costs 15p per payment compared to to 20p for the manual system.

Mitchell said: "Charities favour CafCash because of its high interest rates, low charges and personal service. Now that the new cash withdrawal card is available and with the electronic payment system launching in the autumn, CafCash is an increasingly attractive option for charities wanting an alternative to the high street."

CafCash was created in 1986 as a specialist bank service for charities and now manages more than £800m of charities' money.

CAF's chief executive Stephen Ainger, who succeeded Michael Brophy at the end of last year, has promised a radical expansion of CAF's financial services.

Speaking to Third Sector in January, he said: "We need ways to expand them. It's particularly relevant now with clear government support to promote community involvement. The door is wide open to build key products."

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