CFIT outlines second phase of Open Finance Coalition

Ellie Duncan
18 Apr 2024

The Centre for Finance, Innovation and Technology (CFIT) has revealed that the second phase of its Open Finance Coalition involves scaling the ‘proofs of concept’ published in its Blueprint report, into working prototypes.

The second phase will address what UK-based CFIT has identified is a £22 billion funding gap, by focusing on enhancing financial access for vulnerable consumers and SMEs.

CFIT’s industry-wide Open Finance Coalition published its Blueprint report in February this year, which set out a number of recommendations, as well as two ‘proofs of concept’.

One of these – a dashboard produced with Citizens Advice – showed how enhanced data sharing could provide tailored financial advice to 40% more consumers facing financial difficulties and distress, thereby supporting an additional 150,000 people annually.

As part of the second phase, CFIT announced the expansion of the initial industry-driven pilot projects with Citizens Advice and Experian to new locations, including North Tyneside and Stoke.

The second proof of concept published in the Blueprint earlier this year is a pilot analysis with HSBC UK, which demonstrated how accessing new datasets and auto-populating business loan applications can lead to a “significant boost” in lending decisions.

Yesterday (17 April), CFIT revealed that together with SME lenders, including Barclays, it will build on this pilot analysis with HSBC and other partners CRIF and IBM, to develop Open Finance solutions to “fast-track” SME credit assessments and lending decisions.

CFIT stated: “These extensions of our ‘proofs of concept’ from coalition one are not just about innovation, but about real-world impact, setting the stage for broad adoption of Open Finance across the UK.”

Earlier this week, the Economic Secretary to the Treasury Bim Afolami MP, announced that CFIT has been appointed to chair a new industry-led Open Finance Taskforce of financial institutions and tech companies.