In a banking world opening itself to new players, from the advent of FinTech to the creation of marketplaces, LUXHUB has emerged in Luxembourg. Created by 4 major banks, the startup aims at providing an innovative answer to the upcoming PSD2 European Directive and therefore at offering new solutions and services to the many actors of the financial sector. We met with its CEO, Jacques Pütz, but also with Yves Reding, CEO of EBRC, to discuss the future of open-banking in Europe.
Founded earlier this year, LUXHUB has already convinced 16 European banks, located in 4 different countries, with its open-banking solution. "We aim at helping banks of all sizes to become digital and comply with the PSD2 European Directive which requires banks to open up their accounts for Third Party Providers", explains Jacques Pütz. Security being one of the major issues when setting up a digital business, the startup chose to partner with digital trust expert EBRC, in order to operate and secure its data and infrastructures. According to Yves Reding, "nowadays, trust is the key element when it comes to building and growing a digital business. All companies need to protect their assets, which in today's digital environment are composed almost exclusively of data". EBRC, with its Tier IV certified Data Centres and its ISO 27001, ISO 22301 and PCI DSS certifications, ensures the availability and security of IT operations and data, allowed the creation of the LUXHUB platform. The startup, based in Luxembourg and surrounded by a vibrant FinTech community thanks notably to the dynamism of the Luxembourg House of Financial Technology (LHoFT), follows several other international standards such as Berlin Group and STET. Moreover, the services provided by LUXHUB have been presented to the EBA (European Banking Authority) and EBF (European Banking Federation).
Accelerating the process of innovation
The marketplace designed by LUXHUB advocates innovation and collaboration between traditional banking players and FinTech startups, all participating together in the new "API economy". If such an economy is only sustainable through exchange and collaboration, it is seen a true-game changer in the banking industry, redistributing the roles and actually forcing traditional actors to get rid of silos. According to the CEO of LUXHUB, "banks now have to redefine their approaches and strategies as we can provide them with expert technical solutions. These new mutualized services are benefiting all the banks and can be seen as an accelerator: it increases the speed of innovation".
LUXHUB's motto, "We connect you", also materializes itself through the organization of events gathering bankers and FinTech entrepreneurs to further discuss their potential collaborations and share their (common) vision of the future of banking, acting as a "think tank". "The goal is to find solutions together, so that banks can go to the marketplace and pick the services they need, allowing them to move faster. These solutions, available to all the players within the ecosystem, do not confer a specific competitive advantage but rather help them in the creation of new offers", highlighted Jacques Pütz, who recently took the stage at the Gartner Symposium in Barcelona. In this respect, LUXHUB will open its marketplace to European Financial Technology startups in the upcoming months to further develop trust and interaction between the different players of the dynamic and vibrant ecosystem. "For instance, banks and startups, when connected, could be able to rapidly develop PoCs (Proof of Concept), test and implement new and innovate services or products. In this respect LUXHUB acts as the accelerator of accelerators," adds the open-banking expert.
Together, both companies are promoting open-banking and are clearly moving towards the establishment of a European digital ecosystem, advocating the sharing of best practices but mostly co-creation and collaboration. Located in Luxembourg, LUXHUB and EBRC are also putting the country on the FinTech map, acting as a pioneers in the changing world of finance. With the PSD2 Directive to be implemented all over Europe next June, time is ticking for banks who need to seize the many opportunities offered by the world of open-banking.
Interview by Alexandre Keilmann
Publié le 03 décembre 2018