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QA Financial 2021 Vision Series Seminar 4: Accelerating API delivery, a focus on data management and the Cloud

Now that open banking is a reality, how can banks build an API platform that provides the best competitive edge? On January 27th 20201, QA Financial, together with sponsor partner Delphix, hosted an online seminar with three banks, to compare their strategies for API development and testing, with a particular focus on test data management. 

Along with Filipe Teixera, CIO of Italian challenger bank Illimity, our panellists were Nikhil Varghese, who heads the API platform at New York-based Sterling National Bank, Koen Adolfs, the lead product owner for open banking technology at ABN Amro, and Chay Thornhill, director of pre-sales engineering at Delphix, the data management specialist.

We started our conversation with Nikhil Varghese, who explained how better APIs are critical to Sterling’s “banking-a-service” model and its white-label wealth management offering, which it is distributing through a growing network of partner banks. Similarly, Filipe Teixeira described how Illimity, whose core customer market is SMEs, is expanding its network of alliance partners – which includes non-financial companies, such as energy providers – and how the critical process of merging data for testing and production is managed.

At ABN Amro, the challenges are more about scale. Koen Adolfs discussed the functionality the bank’s customers are looking for, and also how ABN Amro is managing the development of  internal APIs. In both cases, an objective is to increase the communication between development teams, and spread best practice across the bank, he said.

Delphix’s Chay Thornhill compared our panellists’ priorities to those of his clients, across financial services. He discussed the best routes to an “API-first” development platform in the cloud, with a special focus on regulatory and compliance requirements: securing data for API development (masking/synthesising data) and meeting privacy laws.

Nikhil Varghese, API Product Management – Sterling National Bank
Filipe Teixeira, CIO – Illimity Bank
Koen Adolfs, Lead Product Owner, API, Open Banking & Enterprise Integration Technology – ABN AMRO
Chay Thornhill, Director PreSales, EMEA – Delphix