Open Banking Europe and Open Banking Exchange Merge to Create ‘One Global OBE’

Open Banking Europe, OBE, Open Banking Exchange, merger

Open Banking Europe announced Monday (Sept. 5) that it has merged with its international division, Open Banking Exchange, to form a single global organization called OBE.

Open Banking Europe is a multiparty group that works with regulatory authorities, banks, third-party payment service providers and other ecosystem stakeholders to foster innovation, competition, efficiency and security around online payments in the European Union, per a company release.

John Broxis, managing director of Open Banking Europe, will lead Open Banking Exchange globally, supported by regional directors in Europe, Latin America, the Middle East and Asia.

Commenting on the restructuring, Broxis said: “Having one global OBE puts us in an unrivaled position to be able to take best practices and learnings from different jurisdictions and apply them to similar ecosystems to help guide and shape the development of open banking and open finance communities around the world.”

The move is significant, as although open banking has grown by leaps and bounds in recent years, progress has been highly regionalized. In the EU, the development of open banking is associated with the Second Payment Services Directive (PSD2), a landmark piece of legislation that mandated banks to open up account data to regulated third parties.

European open banking’s grounding in PSD2 is part of the reason why even non-EU countries like the U.K. tend to align on the key tenets of the directive, with banks and FinTechs that operate across borders prioritizing pan-European interoperability.

For example, the repeat payments specialist Slimpay recently announced that it will mobilize Tink’s open banking platform to help streamline payments across multiple European markets, both inside and outside of the EU.

See also: Open Banking Powers European Merchants With SlimPay, Tink Partnership 

Yet when it comes to connecting the dots between different systems, Europe’s application programming interface (API)-based approach to open banking doesn’t always mesh with the American model, which is built on users sharing their bank login details with open banking providers.

To complicate matters further, in other parts of the world, a hybrid approach has been pursued whereby a combination of bank APIs and scraping is used to access account data.

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