Small business cloud accounting platform Xero has announced the imminent release of an open banking API.
The full featured API – Xero’s first – will allow banks, fintechs, and financial institutions to integrate with the platform “with minimal development” the company said.
“As a result, data can be imported via direct bank feeds, allowing for near real-time reconciliation in Xero,” it added.
Xero has already worked with more than 180 financial institutions globally on banking data integrations, including NAB, Wells Fargo in the US, and Barclays in the UK. However, these direct integrations have “required specialised development and customisation” from both parties.
“With the Xero bank feeds API, we’re now making bank transaction feeds and daily reconciliation available for all Xero-certified financial institutions and fintechs, while enabling our existing partners to also innovate faster on the Xero platform,” said Ben Styles, Xero general manager of financial services products.
The announcement – made today at Xero’s Xerocon conference in Brisbane – is being pitched squarely at financial firms. Xero noted the benefits they’ll get from using the API, including the ability to “provide new experiences beyond just transactions, to lending, payments, and foreign exchange”.
The company gave the examples of invoice financing lenders collecting funds on behalf of customers now being able to offer business customers the opportunity “to keep track of their loan by syncing repayments and reconciling them in Xero”; and foreign exchange providers syncing transactions and balances from accounts into Xero.
“This is an evolutionary leap in how banks, payment providers, and lenders can interact with their small business customers through Xero,” Styles added.
Xero currently has 1.4 million subscribers and an ecosystem which allows platform users to integrate with more than 700 apps.
The API will be available soon, Xero said.