15 December 2017
The Digital Bank Guru
Mark Ranta

The Digital Bank Guru

Mark Ranta - ACI Worldwide

5Posts 44,091Views 2Comments

'Roads? Where we’re going we won’t need Roads' - Open APIs and Financial Services

12 April 2017  |  14804 views  |  2

The word ecosystem is often used when discussing payments. Whether it’s to describe how a payment is made or to discuss a partnership or even understanding your place in the value chain. Though part of the issue with how we present the ecosystem is that we tend to emphasize only small portions of the overall picture, that is to say if we are discussing payments to a merchant or retailer, the picture shifts to just show eComm, mComm and POS while partially ignoring the Financial Institution, and to a lesser extent the FinTech’s domains. But those days may be coming to an end as we have begun the transition to a new payments ecosystem.

I don’t think this is as much of a proclamation as it is an acknowledgement of what we have all been witnessing. There are new participants, FinTech startups and new payment providers that have joined the fray, large tech companies dipping their toes in the pool, and the traditional players that have been here all along, whether they are processors, merchants or banks. As this has been unfolding, the ecosystem we once knew started to morph and in its place we’re finding a new, bigger ecosystem that is ripe with growth opportunities. Though there are also threats to existing business models.

For me, what’s interesting is this  new emerging ecosystem  doesn’t have the same boundary lines that we have grown accustomed to and it has left the market in an interesting place. Each participant is thinking deeply about how to better serve the end customer and elevate their experiences. It also has us asking where participants can deliver the most value regardless of where they traditionally sat in the ecosystem. This has many rethinking their go-to-market approach and the business models underpinning them, and possibly - and most importantly - has all of us looking to a similar technology to achieve our goals: Open APIs.

So now what? I have used this line in many conversations, but it is still pertinent to this discussion; a rising tide will raise all boats and the world of electronic payments is only growing. If we put the customer experience at the center of our ecosystem and work cooperatively with one another, the innovation boom we are about to enter will benefit everyone. So that just leaves one question, are you ready to join us?

TagsPaymentsTransaction banking

Comments: (4)

Phil Sheehan
Phil Sheehan - 9 Spokes - Auckland | 13 April, 2017, 04:17

Those coming behind you will need the roads though Mark!  Otherwise it's still the wild, wild west out there.  So carve the roads carefully (infrastructure is important) so that others can easily follow to enjoy where you're going too.  And remember, it's not just about the APIs, but the data that it empowers.

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Mark Ranta
Mark Ranta - ACI Worldwide - Waltham | 13 April, 2017, 12:55

Phil, I couldn't agree more on the data statement and agree as well on the infrastructure needs. The point is the future ecosystem won't look like todays and releasing that data to go up, down, sideways or back and forth will unleash huge potential! 

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Ketharaman Swaminathan
Ketharaman Swaminathan - GTM360 Marketing Solutions - Pune | 13 April, 2017, 16:28

Keen on knowing what are the top three differences you expect to see in the payment ecosystem of the future compared to today's: (1) Will existing issuers, acquirers and scheme / networks die? (2) Will nonbanks become issuers and acquirers? (3) Will more nonbanks enter the ecosystem in the capacity of agents / resellers of the existing bank actors? (4)...

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Mark Ranta
Mark Ranta - ACI Worldwide - Waltham | 13 April, 2017, 20:26

Ketharaman, without diving too deep... 1. die is not the right word, but change their existence and value propositions yes. I think you are seeing that with moves being made to enhance "merchant servicing"-esq and or client servicing features and functions and networks buying or trying out new technologies. 2. I think the definition of both will change, the business as we know it won't look like it does today so to say a non bank will become an issuer or acquirer isn't necessarily something I see happening, though services that issuers and acquirers do today will be done by none banks in the future and 3. yes, though I do not think explicity... the services the FIs provide will be "hidden" or "underneath"  the value propositions the new TPPs bring to the table. I feel a follow-on blog coming... 

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job title Director, Product Management
location Waltham
member since 2017
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I work closely with financial institutions discussing, exploring, and examining market trends and key drivers in the evolving digital solutions space.

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