UK innovation agency Nesta has launched a £5 million prize fund to inspire the creation of new products and services using Open Banking APIs.
Nesta's Open UP Challenge is looking for 20 winning entries that will use the APIs - newly available from early 2018 - to transform the way small businesses discover, access and use core financial products.
Winners will receive a £50k grant up-front and a share of a further £3.5 million for ongoing development of successful products.
Participants will be able to access an Open Up Data Sandbox containing millions of anonymised transaction data sets, backed up by fully-funded technical and business support from experts in user experience design, legal and regulatory fields.
Nesta is looking for tools that could help small business better compare loan products, predict and manage cashflow, make more informed budgeting decisions and automatically transfer liquid funds to appropriate savings accounts.
Chris Gorst, Open Up Challenge Prize Lead at Nesta, comments: “Open Banking has the potential to transform small business banking, leading to a step change in innovation and offering busy customers unprecedented transparency, convenience and control. The Open Up Challenge aims to make this a reality, by supporting innovators building next generation services centred around small businesses’ needs."
The Challenge is open to developer teams, start-ups, or established companies from anywhere in the world whose concept may be at idea stage or could be more advanced. Applications will be open between 23 March and 31 May 2017.