Open Banking Excellence: The World’s Premier Community of Open Banking Professionals
Open Banking Excellence (OBE) is a network of Open Banking and Open Finance pioneers, including fintech, banks, regulators, and big techs, who come together to learn, exchange experiences, ignite discussion, and, most importantly, collaborate. It aims to be the true voice of a worldwide movement of like-minded professionals who work together to give technological, regulatory, and legal insight into Open Banking and its broader implications for a dynamic and inventive financial industry. OBE is a community where the industry can share, learn, and create awareness about the benefits of making bank data available to third parties.
Enabling Independent Industry Discussion
OBE is a global knowledge center driving change in Open Finance backed with a growing community encompassing the whole Open Banking ecosystem. It creates exceptional content and provides elevated platforms to promote new thinking and partnerships within the industry – catalyzing the adoption of Open Finance and data for better financial inclusion worldwide.
Acting as a conduit for independent industry discussion, OBE leads the conversation at campfires which provide a warm and authentic place for the community to learn from like-minded peers, share common challenges, collaborate and drive change within their businesses.
The OBE community is time-crunched. So, the company focuses on cutting through the noise and the swathes of content out there to deliver resources that are purposeful, clear, concise, and relevant.
Maximizing Impact and Growth in the Sector
OBE’s mission is to enable the Open Banking community to connect, collaborate and innovate, maximizing its impact and growth in its sector.
Amit Mallick, Managing Director, Global Open Banking and APIs Lead of Accenture says “New analysis from Accenture, built on data sets covering 20 of the largest economies responsible for over 75% of global GDP worldwide suggests that as much as $416 billion in revenue will be at stake as the open data wave arrives.
It started with 38 Open Banking pioneers being served warm wine by men in kilts at an after-work networking session. There was an energy and excitement in the room, a sense that fintech was setting out on a journey driven by a passionate desire to improve financial services for the customer. OBE agreed to meet again, before outgrowing the company’s next home, and the next, and then the next. (This is called a first-class problem the company is told!). It was phenomenal organic growth. Lockdown came and OBE flipped to digital, choosing to partner with a team that could handle scale and creates a platform that allowed it to stand out from the crowd. Retrospectively, this was one of the best moves the company made, allowing it to focus on supporting its community, knowing that a world-class production team was working with it.
OBE is still a rapidly growing global community of Open Banking pioneers including fintech, big techs, banks, regulators, policymakers, and services providers, who are all like-minded people that want to learn, share their stories, collaborate, and spark debate.
However, OBE is much more than a community. After working with the media to educate journalists on Open Banking and the wealth of opportunities it presents for fintech, OBE developed a PR team. The company is now behind many of the industry stories people read in the national and fintech press.
Collaborative Teamwork Wins
Helen Child, Founder of OBE, was recently voted one of the most influential women in fintech by Innovate Finance and has delivered pioneering industry firsts within her field. Helen was the founder and former CEO of a card issuing company that was the first to be awarded licenses by both Mastercard and Visa. It was the fifth in the UK to be awarded an FCA E-Money License – Google was the sixth.
The OBE “Appathon 2.0” is sponsored by Mastercard & AWS and is the industry’s annual competition to inspire innovation among fintech start-ups/scaleups and call on them to build innovative open finance solutions.
The company has seen some exceptional award-winning products created at the company’s OBE Appathon and some valuable commercial relationships formed.
One of the projects OBE is most proud of is a collaboration with Streeva and Moneyhub that demonstrated the power of Open Banking payments by allowing charitable donations to be made in seconds using a QR code – enjoy watching our conversation with one of our chosen charities SSAFA. The company believes in karma – and this is a beautiful way of promoting its sector and encouraging the company’s global family to give back to those who are less fortunate.
An Exceptionally Talented Leader
A keen cyclist, Helen loves nothing more than to start each morning with a ride along the beautiful Morecambe Bay beach where she lives. Helen is an accomplished fintech entrepreneur, with a background in payments who believes that open banking payments should be ubiquitous.
By constantly taking the pulse and listening to the feedback from the company’s community, she has developed the company’s services in response to its needs. This is why OBE has launched its first Campfire in Brazil on 1st September 2021 with Mastercard, Accenture, the DIT, Central Bank of Brazil, to name but a few attendees of the new Famíla.
Collaboration has always been fundamentally important to Helen. When on the Counsel of Lancaster University, she was the Founder of Infolab, the meeting place for blue-chip companies and fintech.
A mentor to fintech at Plug and Play, Helen says that it’s always a privilege to share your knowledge and get to meet more fascinating businesses along the way too.
Pioneering a Perfect Work-Life Balance
OBE’s universal challenge is shared by all: working remotely through the lockdown. The company is now all the more aware of mental health and well-being. At OBE, it has ‘Zoom Call Free Fridays’ which is proving to be a great balance to the end of a busy week. The company’s team will continue to work remotely, so they need to consciously make the effort to have monthly team days together. Once travel restrictions allow, the company is going to visit Giovanni, OBE Head of Research and Blogs who is based in Lake Como!
The company is about to launch a coaching service with its community. Anyone who loves sport knows the power of coaching, which helps get the best results from people. Given what the company has all been through, now is a good time to take some time to reflect on what makes an optimum performance and invest in its teams.
“It’s truly never been more exciting to be a part of this industry. With Visa and Mastercard both acquisitive, the landscape is changing. Open Banking Excellence would like to share three recent capital raises from its community that should inspire everyone.” says Helen. “Nigel Verdon, Co-Founder & CEO of Railsbank, and his team recently raised $70m to continue their global expansion. Nigel is also the Founder of Currencycloud, which was acquired by Visa for $1 billion.
“Sam Seaton, CEO at Moneyhub, has just completed an $18m raise — one of the largest female-led rounds in European Fintech thus far. And finally, Salesforce and its acquisition of Slack. We think this power duo will be at the forefront of the changing face of work.”Throughout the pandemic, Open Banking Excellence (OBE) found its place in the ecosystem as the global center of community and knowledge driving change in Open Finance.”