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NEWS - 15. February 2018 17:00

The future banking hackathon organised by SEB and Garage48 will bring more than 100 participants to Tallinn

The Open Banking Hackathon, organised by SEB and Garage48, will bring together fintech companies and enthusiasts from Estonia, Latvia, USA, and the UK. 108 participants and 50 different companies have registered for the three-day programming marathon to test and develop the financial services of the next generation.

Parties registered for the hackathon included state institutions and universities as well as telecommunication, trade, construction, and real estate companies. Most participants are from the IT sector, the finance and banking sector, and the areas of accounting and fintech.

According to Ragnar Toomla, Head of Digital Strategy of the Baltic division of SEB, several participating companies already provide working services and during the hackathon, SEB can help them perfect and scale their service via the SEB platform. ‘Of course, we can thereby also offer future added value to the clients of SEB,’ Toomla added.

According to Allan Parik, Chairman of the Board of SEB, openness to changes and the wish to initiate change is the key to innovation culture. ‘This is a matter of the future of the banking sector as a whole as well as the effect of the concept of open banking on the future choices of consumers,’ Parik explained. ‘Clients expect simple and transparent financial solutions, speedy processes, and personalised offers. In the end, the question is whether clients are eager to cooperate with several providers or whether they will still prefer the bank as a central service provider in the future,’ Parik added.

According to Parik, new technologies and data processing competencies create more possibilities to communicate with clients, but when choosing financial partners, digital client experience is what matters. ‘This is why we have decided to open our platform to financial technology companies, develop the services of the future, and lead innovation in cooperation with them,’ Parik said.

One of the participants of the hackathon is Omniva, whose aim is to join open banking, e-invoicing, and other financial processes in a way that allows entrepreneurs to actually benefit from real-time management. ‘The idea for the project started from the Growth Programme of SEB, in which we participated a few months ago, and the hackathon taking place this weekend is a natural continuation to it,’ said Sander Aasna, head of the e-Invoicing Department of Omniva.

‘We at Omniva actively work on bringing the flexible way of thinking characteristic of start-ups into a working business model. The environment of the hackathon is perfect for improving and realising our ideas,’ Aasna added. Omniva’s long-term vision is to create artificial intelligence to help companies make quicker and better-informed business decisions, relying on real-time economic indicators.

The SEB Open Banking Hackathon is a cooperation with the team of Garage48 and will take place on 16–18 February at the SEB Innovation Centre.

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