AVA implements e-invoicing to accelerate its digital strategy

Meeting mandates and supplier requirements

E-invoicing for AVA

AVA is an international manufacturing and sales company with 500+ employees. The company makes more than 15,000 different products (paperware and much more) available in 50 specialized web shops and retail shops in Belgium and Luxembourg. Over 5,000 professional clients (mainly catering) get supplies through the AVA Pro sales channel. AVA also exports to seven countries, which accounts for 50 percent of its production.

Since e-invoicing is less time consuming than manual processing, and guarantees flawless work, AVA decided to go all the way and implement a strategic e-invoicing project.

For its e-invoicing strategy, AVA had two important decisions to make: which standard to support, and how to set up secure and scalable exchange with business partners.

UBL e-invoices: The new norm

Machine-readable e-invoices create automation opportunities in the accounting workflows of both AVA and its business partners. UBL documents that comply with the European e-invoicing norm EN-61931 have gained wide support among suppliers as well as buyers. Moreover, EU mandates to use the norm EN-16931 for public procurements, also known as Business-To-Government (B2G) e-invoicing mandate. For AVA, that was the trigger to start its digital journey. Not only is UBL the required invoice format for its many government clients, it is also the preferred format of SME customers and their accountants.

On top of that, the UBL standard is internationally accepted, supporting a cross-border digital strategy, end to end.

Document exchange via Peppol

Peppol is a secure e-Delivery network with guaranteed delivery and security by design. By registering on the Peppol network as a receiver, AVA created a dedicated electronic mailbox accessible to suppliers connected to the network. Likewise, using the same connection, AVA can find out which of its customers are registered on the Peppol network and ready to accept documents.

The project

In 2019, AVA selected AdValvas Europe, now a part of Axway, as its e-invoicing service provider. As a certified Peppol access point and Peppol directory publisher, Axway eInvoicing acts as the gateway to AVA’s digital exchange networks and allows AVA to be compliant with B2G e invoicing mandate. AVA sales invoices are generated from the Tilroy POS application. The invoice data is processed in a bespoke format and converted on the fly by Axway eInvoicing into the specific UBL version accepted by the client.

Purchase invoices received through Peppol are pushed from within the Axway eInvoicing gateway to the AVA accounting platform, which was already supporting standard UBL out-of-the-box.

Both sales and purchase invoices are securely preserved in the Axway eInvoicing digital archive.

UBL first strategy

The more clients that have registered on the Peppol network, and the more suppliers that support Peppol, the higher the number of invoices that AVA can convert to e-invoicing. However, it is not sufficient to just appear in the Peppol “yellow pages.”

AVA is actively promoting UBL as its preferred invoice format. The company makes use of Axway eInvoicing onboarding services to verify the Peppol presence of its suppliers and customers. Results of new customer matches are loaded in the CRM back office on a regular basis. For supplier onboarding, Axway is partnering with the Belgian DigiCrowd initiative. Through their accountants, SMEs have delegated Peppol supplier activation to DigiCrowd.

Embracing e-invoicing

AVA understands that the moment is now to embrace e-invoicing. The European standard has already gained wide support by many fintech applications in Europe and beyond. Adopting the standard while administrative volumes are still manageable is smart. AVA can gradually optimize its processes while volumes increase. As of now, the company is prepared for the digitized future, and it is ahead of its competition.

About Axway eInvoicing

Part of the Axway B2B Integration Platform, Axway eInvoicing lets you handle invoicing in a way that’s global, standards-driven, and always up to date, whatever the country. It offers efficiency and cost advantages to companies everywhere by making invoicing 100 percent digital.

Axway eInvoicing enables companies to comply with an evolving list of B2B and B2G invoicing requirements around the world. Fully integrated with existing e-invoicing regulations, this cloud-based solution allows for continuous compliance and the agility to meet diverse and evolving national and legal requirements, now and in the future.

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