B2B Payments

Xero Braces For Bank Integrations With New API

Small business accounting software provider Xero is bracing for a slew of bank and FinTech integrations with the launch of its Open Banking API, according to reports in The Australian Financial Review on Thursday (Sept. 6). At its annual Xerocon event held this week, Xero announced the launch of the API, aimed at streamlining integrations with banks. The technology can accelerate integration times from as long as 12 weeks to as short as two days.

“This is a platform play and it’s about scalability,” said Xero’s Financial Services Product General Manager Ben Styles. “We will no longer be constrained by how fast we can build a bank feed.”

He added that the API takes “the shackles off our banking partners” and promotes bank innovation.

“They can not only connect our API to invoice solutions or pay bills, they can create new feeds required around bank accounts, and it lets the banks work to provide what their customers are asking for,” continued Styles.

Reports said Xero already has 180 partnerships in place with financial institutions (FIs) across the globe, including Wells Fargo and Barclays. Earlier this year, National Australia Bank (NAB) announced an expansion of its existing integration with Xero that allows businesses to make payments from within the Xero app, rather than having to toggle between Xero and the NAB online banking platform or app.

More recently, in July, Xero announced an API-powered integration into BBVA Compass accounts. Xero expects the API to usher in as many as 40 additional partners with second- and third-tier banks. Partners that wish to use the API for integration must pass security standards to become “Xero-certified,” reports noted.

The API was one of several new products announced by the cloud accounting company, reports said. The products include a feature for accountants to more easily collect and consolidate documents, as well as enhancements to Xero’s emails-to-bills capabilities and a Xero marketplace app for users to access apps that they can recommend to their small business clients.



The pressure on banks to modernize their payments capabilities to support initiatives such as ISO 20022 and instant/real time payments has been exacerbated by the emergence of COVID-19 and the compelling need to quickly scale operations due to the rapid growth of contactless payments, and subsequent increase in digitization. Given this new normal, the need for agility and optimization across the payments processing value chain is imperative.