Key players discuss the future of Open Finance in Brazil during OBE Campfire

sittin people beside table inside room

London, 27 April 2022: Over the last year, Brazil has accelerated at an astonishing pace toward building a world-class Open Banking ecosystem. On top of introducing a new resolution that aims to officially launch an Open Finance project in the country, the wide Brazilian Fintech sector is working to follow the rules introduced around Payment Initiation.

Earlier this year, Mercado Pago became the first financial institution to offer Payment Initiation in the country and on the 26th of April Open Banking Excellence (OBE), the global centre of community and knowledge, driving change in Open Finance, will gather key players in the finance industry around a virtual Campfire to celebrate the milestone and discuss what’s ahead.

Covering the current status of implementation in Brazil with a specific view of the challenges and opportunities the Payment Initiation brings, this live session will be split into two panels. The first, in Portuguese, will discuss the adoption of Payments Initiation in Brazil. The second, in English, will focus on the lessons Brazil can learn from the UK.

The Campfire will kick off with a conversation with Thomas Camargo, Vice-President of Open Finance at Mastercard Brazil, about how the future of Open Finance is being shaped in Brazil.

“Brazil has come a long way since it started its journey in Open Banking. With the move now towards Open Finance, the country is set to become a world reference and everyone should be extremely proud of the progress secured so far,” said Helen Child, Founder of OBE.

Thomas Camargo, Vice-President of Open Finance at Mastercard Brazil, said: “The possibilities that Open Finance brings to the market are accompanied by several opportunities for institutions. Therefore, we have been working to be an important partner at this time, based on our experience in Europe, Asia and the United States.”

Ana Paula Nunes Cerchiari Almeida, Superintendent of Digital Cash Management & Open Banking at Itaú Unibanco, said: “Brazilian customers are looking for simplicity in their banking operations. We believe Payment Initiation is a new element in the process of improving people’s digital experience, and Itaú will be one of the first to offer new related solutions, ambitioning to have the best experience in the market.”

Leandro Pupe Nóbrega, Product Operations Leader at Belvo, said: “Open Finance in Brazil has increased a lot the number of institutions exposing APIs and also the number of requests to that, on the other hand, people still don’t see the impact of it because the companies are preparing themselves to transform all of this data into information and create the experiences expected by the population. In parallel, we have some other agendas taking place about Open Insurance, Open Investments and also about new features of PIX that will help to increase the value of the functionalities through Open Banking. As you can see, we still have a lot of work to do in 2022 but inside a market that has shown a great potential of engagement by the financial institutions, fintechs and the citizens.”

Janaina Attie, Analyst at Banco Central do Brasil’s (Central Bank of Brazil) Regulation Department, in charge of the payment initiation process in the Open Banking initiative, said: “The payment initiation in Open Finance further expands the opportunities created by Pix for retail, especially e-commerce, financial and payment institutions and, above all, for the customers of these institutions. The first steps were taken with the development of technical standards adopted throughout the market. Going forward, these standards will follow a process of continuous improvement, based on best practices and learning from the current implementation process. Relevant institutions have already completed their approval process and are in the testing phase to scale the payment solutions developed for their entire customer base. For the next few months, we expect these solutions to be launched and also for new initiators to enter the market, as several institutions are already finalizing their onboarding. For the near future, improvements are being planned to make the process of payment initiators onboarding more fluid, improving standardisation in order to make this process more ‘plug and play’. In addition, we are also studying some UX improvements to optimise and make the end-user journey even simpler.”

Huw Davies, Chief Commercial Officer at Ozone API, said: “It’s been really impressive to see the pace at which Open Finance is being delivered in Brazil. The conditions are being created to be the global benchmark. It has been really exciting to be part of the journey, helping banks to deliver Open Banking APIs and we look forward to doing the same for insurance companies as Open Insurance approaches.”

Ralph Bragg, Founder and CTO of Raidiam, said: “I would challenge any assumption that Brazil still has technical lessons to learn from the UK as they’ve learnt them already thanks to all the groundwork done. Raidiam has supported both initiatives and thanks to our involvement they are pushing the boundaries of what was achieved in the UK and doing it more quickly. As well as our technology, which has removed barriers for Fintechs, we drafted Brazil’s initial security and authorisation processes and standards. These Open Standards are key enablers towards Open Insurance, Open Health and beyond.”

Gavin Littlejohn, Executive Chairman at FDATA said: “As Executive Chairman of FDATA Global, I was fortunate to be involved from the very start of the Brazilian journey, having hosted the Banco Central Do Brasil during the initial investigation on opportunity and methodology in 2018. I am delighted to see the adherence to the technology standardisation process is paying dividends. Our Region Director for LATAM, Bruno Diniz, remains concerned about how interoperability will be achieved going forward, as Open Banking intersects with Open Insurance. We remain hopeful that the creation of a fully transparent and neutral performance dashboard will help the Banco Central Do Brasil, and the wider ecosystem, to better understand relative performance and adequacy, enabling intervention to drive improvement. On the plus side, we are happy that Open Finance in Brazil is accelerating fast with a broad scope and a good governance system, crucial aspects for a solid advance in this field. The strong demand for this new possibility within the Fintech ecosystem – and consequentially demand for innovative Fintech services built using Open Finance amongst the wider public – are providing early success signals to policymakers.”