Money20/20's annual Europe event kicked off with a stream updating the industry on the progress of open banking.
The first of these sessions, ‘From Concept To Reality: Five Years Of Open Banking’, was moderated by Helen Child, founder and CEO, Open Banking Excellence (OBE), who was joined by Nick Corrigan, European president, Global Payments; Tom Pope, SVP payments and platforms, Tink; and Jim Wadsworth, EVP, strategic market development, Konsentus.
Regarding where the industry is at this point, Corrigan argued that there is a need to “zoom out” from the current situation and look at what the first principles of open banking are, which he state dare: “financial inclusion and financial well being and the advent of technology inside the financial services business.”
With this in mind, he said, “it's still early days. You’ve got to remember that we're five years in. Two of those years were interrupted by a pandemic. And I think we've got the building blocks in place.”
Corrigan added that those building blocks are the account side and the payments side. Pope joined the conversation: "I hate the term open banking. I get kind of frustrated when people talk about Tink as an open banking company because I don't think that means anything. I want to be a payments company, a databased payments company.”
He continued: “it's kind of meaningless to talk about selling open banking. All you need to think about is what are the problems in those individual markets, that open banking can solve. Sometimes it’s a data related problem. Sometimes that's a payments related problem. Sometimes you can bring the data and the payment together to solve a problem in a new way.”
Regarding where we are in Europe, Wadsworth mentioned: "it’s a good start but it’s just that.” He continued that “PSD2 was a good start but there’s so much more to be done.”
The panelists agreed that the UK’s open banking initiatives is one of the benchmarks globally, although all argued that there are other countries doing good things. Wadsworth explained that Poland’s system is “a superb example of how an existing infrastructure how to account payments works, and they moved on they got point of sale, they've got QR codes. They're managing to break through to the ecommerce side.”
Corrigan followed by saying that, “in some respects, certainly from a regulatory perspective, the UK and Europe have been overtaken, at least in terms of the ambition, by other parts of the world.”
In concluding Corrigan said: “No one really knows what the end game is. We’re right at the start.”