Foundations for promising propositions and scale opportunities

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The Monetisation stream of this year's Congress kicked off with a panel looking at what opening banking has achieved so far and where future opportunities lie.

Chaired by Ghela Boskovich of the Financial Data and Technology Association (FDATA), the panel brought together: 

Biju Suresh Babu, Managing Director, Banking and Financial Services, Fiorano
Rafael Plantier, Country Manager, UK & Ireland, Tink
Tanja Imamovic, Open API Business Owner, Raiffeisen Bank International

There was general agreement that opening banking has been a success – particularly given the scale of the challenge undertaken – but that there is much further to go. While there has been an inevitable focus on regulatory requirements, open banking is also driving a cultural shift towards greater openness and collaboration.

There’s more to do in terms of consumer awareness and trust, but just focusing on the consumer perspective may be misleading. In future, we’ll be able to look back and see what a great foundation has been laid.

The panel identified a lack of standardisation as a problem, but one that is being overcome as open banking becomes more established, and as banks move on from compliance. We are in the early stages of a journey, which has been led by the UK so far – but emerging markets are now looking to move faster.

Open Banking has had a phenomenal start in UK and Europe. While the majority of use cases have been AIS related, we are beginning to see some very interesting PIS ones and this is where the fun really begins. Banks are looking at core banking and payment systems more holistically in the face of innovation-fuelled competitors, powered by Open Banking.

With customer expectations around payments and settlements constantly changing, one of the key aspects we explored were the challenges traditional banks who are used to operating in batch-mode faced, adapting to real-time competitors, along with architecture models that support emerging propositions that leverage the cloud, support instant-payments and scale on-demand." 

Biju Suresh Babu

There was an interesting discussion around the wider impact open banking and PSD2 are having on how banks look at data. Banks are looking at enriching internal datasets to compete with challengers and exploiting the richer payments data that is coming with ISO 20022. More broadly, the open API approach cuts across much more than just open banking to bringing the best customer experience.

Banks are becoming more open to partnerships as their focus turns towards opportunities. Covid has demonstrated the value of what can be offered by, for example, the ability to look at financial wellbeing across accounts with multiple providers.

The challenges of dealing with legacy systems, and limits to the capacity to implement partnerships, continue to constrain progress. That said, the panel were bullish on the potential for premium APIs and richer data, though monetisation would not be easy.

Watch the full presentation on Day 1, Afternoon, Part B.