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Another 27 Danish banks get access to open banking APIs

Nordic banks gain access to open banking capabilities from Nordic API Gateway, with an agreement through their shared IT service provider

More than two million people in Denmark will have access to open banking services after 27 of the country’s banks make an agreement with specialist supplier Nordic API Gateway through the IT supplier they collaboratively own, BEC. 

BEC has agreed to work with open banking platform provider Nordic API Gateway, which already has agreements with major banks in the Nordic region and beyond. 

IT service provider BEC was founded by Danish banks in 1964 to enable them to share IT capabilities. It is owned by several banks, including Spar Nord, Nykredit, Arbejdernes Landsbank and Handelsbanken. Around 30% of Danish consumers are customers of banks in the group. 

This follows a similar agreement in February which saw Bankdata, which is a supplier with nine bank owners, access open banking application programming interfaces (APIs) from Nordic API Gateway, opening the services up to around 1.7 million customers.

The open banking services make it possible for customers of banks that use BEC to see and pay with accounts from other banks and get full overview of their finances across several banks across 15 EU countries.

Open banking services such as these were made possible by the EU’s Payment Services Directive 2 regulation, which came into effect in 2018. PSD2 enables third parties to access the customer data held by banks via APIs, if customer consent is granted, and offer services using this information. For example, a company, with your consent, can take a payment directly from your account without you leaving its website.

BEC and Bankdata are organisations that work on IT development for their members, which cuts costs and increases focus.

Jesper Nielsen, CEO at BEC said: “We are working hard to open BEC’s banking platform and are well underway with new partnerships with globally leading technology partners in a number of areas. Through a strong partnership with Nordic API Gateway, we are now also able to develop innovative services that interact directly with accounts in other banks.”

Speaking in February after Bankdata’s agreement with Nordic API Gateway, Bankdata’s development director Claus Hjort Bjerre said: “We must be an active player in an open ecosystem if we want to be among the best to support our customers’ needs for IT development.

“With this specific collaboration, we’re able to keep delivering on our promise to create, implement and run high-quality IT solutions for our member banks and use the best technology in the field to increase competition and growth with the consumer in mind.”

All the open banking services from Nordic API Gateway will now be available to the 27 BEC banks.

Rune Mai, CEO at Nordic API Gateway, said the banks can chose any of the services they want now that the contract is agreed. He said banks typically start their open banking journeys by enabling account aggregation and then move into payments.

“We already had relationships with a couple of the banks in the BEC group, but now we can work with teams at all the banks. For us, it is a way to distribute our open banking infrastructure platform much faster,” said Mai.

Nordic API Gateway now has 42 Nordic banks as customers, including Danske Bank and OP Financial Group. The company is expanding across Europe including in the UK, Germany, the Baltics, Spain and Italy.

A survey carried out by Nordic API Gateway last June revealed that businesses operating in the region’s financial services sector were changing their services following the introduction of PSD2.

Read more about open banking in the Nordics

Read more on IT for financial services

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