By Genify on 15/04/2023, 16:09:37

Open Banking in the UAE: DAPI, Lean, SaltEdge

Open banking businesses offer customers services that traditional banks lack, ultimately benefiting customers, creating a highly competitive financial and banking landscape and encouraging innovation in the banking industry. 

Open banking in the UAE brings forth three main players, offering banking data aggregation services, also known as data access services. These players include DAPI, Lean Technologies, and SaltEdge. This article will compare these three players in certain aspects, including country coverage, supported banks, and other comparison dimensions. Continue reading to learn more. 

Open Banking: Brief Overview 

Open banking is a banking system that enables third parties to access customers’ financial information and banking data, allowing them to provide better-targeted financial products, services, and advice. That said, open banking data aggregation services refer to financial data collection and consolidation from various sources, including banks and financial institutions, into a single customer interface, through which customers can easily track their spending, monitor their accounts, and find personalized recommendations, making their banking experience more convenient and efficient. 

Key Open Banking Players in the UAE

Open banking in the UAE comprises three key players: DAPI, Lean Technologies, and SaltEdge. The below comparison will compare the mentioned businesses regarding country coverage, supported banks, duration of the user journey, the inclusion of banking data and SME banking data, and industry standards implementation.

Country Coverage

Country coverage in open banking businesses determines the breadth of the potential customer base and the variety of financial services that can be accessed through their open banking APIs. In other words, an open banking business with a broader country coverage can offer more comprehensive financial services and gain a more extensive customer base, resulting in higher revenue and greater market share.

All three players target the UAE market; however, SaltEdge also covers the markets in Bahrain and Qatar, while Lean Technologies covers that in the KSA. That said, the financial institutions each business has access to vary; for example, SaltEdge services access accounts from 5,000+ financial institutions in over 50 countries, making it an excellent choice for companies willing to expand. 

Banks Supported 

The number of banks an open banking business supports indicates and affects the reach and value of their open banking APIs. To put it differently, the more supported banks, the more comprehensive and valuable the open banking interface becomes. For third-party providers, a larger number of supported banks means they have access to more data and can offer more services to customers. As for customers, a larger number of supported banks enables them to choose from a wider range of services dedicated to finance management and banking. 

Accordingly, here are the supported banks of each open banking player in the UAE:

  • DAPI’s supported banks in the UAE include ADCB Bank, ADIB Bank, EIB Bank, ENBD Bank, HSBC Bank, Liv Bank, Standard Chartered Bank, RAK Bank, Mashreq Bank, Mashreq Business Bank, Commercial Bank of Dubai, Citibank, Dubai Islamic Bank, First Abu Dhabi Bank, Mashreq Neo Bank, and Sharjah Islamic Bank. 
  • On the other hand, Lean Technologies is regulated by the Saudi Central Bank and the Abu Dhabi Global Market, and its supported banks in the UAE include ADCB, the Dubai Islamic Bank, Emirates NBD Bank, and RAKBANK. 
  • Finally, SaltEdge’s UAE-supported banks include Emirates NBD, HSBC, Mashreq, and RAKBANK. The business also supports the Qatar Islamic Bank in Qatar and the National Bank of Kuwait in Bahrain. 

Duration of the User Journey

In the context of open banking, the user journey refers to the customer’s experience of using open banking APIs, and a quick and efficient user journey can help build better trust between customers and open banking businesses.

Additionally, a quick user journey makes the customer experience seamless, increasing customer satisfaction and engagement. Also, since open banking businesses are facing increasing competition from traditional banks and fintech startups, a quick and easy user journey gives an open banking business a competitive edge, attracting and retaining customers.

It is worth noting that DAPI, Lean Technologies, and SaltEdge’s user journeys are all a matter of seconds, making them the top three players in the field of open banking in the UAE.

Consumer Banking Data Vs. SME Banking Data

Some open banking businesses work with consumer or SME banking data, while others work with both. Consumer banking data refers to financial data related to individual consumers, including their personal accounts, transactions, and credit history. Open banking businesses utilize this data type to provide consumers with access to financial services and products. 

On the other hand, SME banking data refers to financial data related to small and medium-sized businesses, including their business accounts, transactions, and credit history, and it is used by open banking businesses to provide SMEs with access to financial services and products, such as accounting software, cash flow management tools, and invoice financing.

DAPI only works with consumer data, while Lean Technologies and SaltEdge work with consumer and SME banking data. 

Industry Standard Supported

An open banking business that is “industry standard supported” uses widely accepted technical standards and protocols for open banking APIs’ implementation. Industry bodies and organizations establish these standards and protocols, such as the Open Banking Implementation Entity (OBIE) in the UK or the Berlin Group in Europe. They are designed to ensure interoperability and consistency across different open banking platforms.

DAPI supports industry standards, and it uses specific protocols for open banking. DAPI is SOC2 certified, and it employs industry-leading security tools and practices to fulfill all enterprise needs. The SOC2 is a voluntary compliance standard for service organizations developed by the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA), which specifies how organizations should manage customer data.

Even though Lean Technologies does not explicitly adhere to specific open banking standards and protocols, it is regulated in the UAE by the ADGM Financial Services Regulatory Authority to provide Third Party Services under FSP no. 200033, and the Saudi Central Bank also regulates it to test its innovative services under the Regulatory Sandbox environment under license no. 1010622090.

SaltEdge uses several open banking industry standards and protocols for its services, as they are PSD2 compliant. Moreover, SaltEdge is ISO 27001 certified, and it adheres to the highest international privacy and security standards. It is also compliant with GDPR and country-specific regulations.

Open Banking for Data Access in the UAE and Genify

Even though the businesses mentioned above are key players in open banking in the UAE, and they advertise and actively offer transaction categorization and enrichment services, they are also proactively expanding their coverage areas and improving their APIs’ accuracy and granularity. However, Genify already provides highly advanced and granular APIs that can be used in combination with open banking. 

For instance, Genify’s transaction data categorization API is designed to categorize open banking data into consumption patterns and labels, allowing end users to have a clear and complete picture of their spending habits, as their transactions are classified and labeled under various categories, such as travel, shopping, bills, and more. 

It is worth mentioning that transaction data categorization is part of data enrichment, the latter referring to additions or alterations to transaction information, including merchants’ logos, merchants’ websites, and transaction carbon footprint. You can leverage these data enrichment fields with Genify’s APIs and utilize Genify’s globality today as it enriches transactions from almost all countries. Not only that, but Genify also allows you to test its transaction categorization API so you can experience its power first-hand – a feature only exclusively available from Genify. 

Give it a Try - It's Free

  • Explore sample enriched data & insights.
  • Query the API in a sandbox environment.
  • Explore the extended API documentation.
  • Test with up to 1000 transactions for free.
  • Access API keys.