Jessica Ellerm is a thought leader specializing in Small Business and the Gig Economy and is the CEO and Co-Founder of Zuper, a neowealth disruptor in Australia.
In July of this year Australia’s first Open Banking APIs went live, under the umbrella of the government’s broader Consumer Data Right (CDR) legislation. The first APIs to be released publicly by the major 4 banks are Product APIs, that conform to the API standards built by Data61. They include public information such as product rates, fees and Terms and Conditions across a bank’s consumer and business banking deposits, transaction and credit card products.
It’s TBC when individual customers will be able to share data via API, however some are pegging this to be as early as February 2020.
Product APIs are a step forward for the technology community down under, but it’s clear the real rubber will hit the road once rich personal data is made available at the consumer level. Once this happens, it’s easy to see 4 APIs ballooning to 40, which gives rise to some interesting business opportunities for those with an eye for API streamlining, and time poor developers.
This week, Adatree, a new Australian technology company specialising in CDR compliance released their first product to market – a simple API that aggregates the first Product APIs available from the major banks.
Consumers of these APIs could be comparison sites or Big 4 competitors, although the possibilities are endless. There is no doubt though that anyone looking to access real-time insights on the pricing of Australia’s banking gorillas will be hungry for this data. As Jill Berry, founder and CEO of Adatree pointed out to me, this data could allow a product provider to build financial products that could always price adjust in real time, virtually guaranteeing to their customers that they would always be 10% lower than the largest 4 banks, no matter what pricing moves take place.
This is powerful stuff, and changes the dynamic around how consumers choose a financial provider. If you could set-and-forget with one provider, knowing they would always be better than the bank/FI you could switch to, the definition of customer stickiness reaches far headier heights than anything we can really envisage today.
CDR is the burning platform that has real potential to completely transform the fintech space in Australia. The question now will be whether local businesses are ready to take advantage of this opportunity, or the scene is perfectly set for offshore smarts to finally make their move. Companies like Adatree, will no doubt be happy either way.