Dr. Cyrosch Kalateh has spent the last decade consulting on banking and digitalisation across the DACH region (which stands for Germany, Austria and Switzerland), in senior positions with fintech auxmoney and consultancy firm Bain and Company. And he’s pretty excited about where he finds himself and the market today.
Poised to leap head first into its open banking journey, both financial institutions and their customers have come a long way from the traditional values, and collective concerns about data usage, that saw the countries take a more cautious approach to innovating their banking sectors.
When you look at open banking journeys across Europe, the DACH region is probably where Sweden or the UK was a couple of years ago. The big perception in this region, that a person has one bank for life, has morphed. Banks’ value propositions will steadily change, as they develop from the sole holder of all data and customer relations, into providers of great customer experiences, data science and financial solutions.
Sales structures are shifting from branch to digital, and neo banks are growing in popularity, as an alternative to rising account charges at traditional banks - helping to push a more tech savvy approach to banking.
Once it becomes more proven that customers want change, then banks must put customer experience at the heart of their service - and open banking is the tool to make it happen.
‘The feeling is that it’s no longer about sitting on customer data, but delivering a better customer experience and leveraging customer relationships,’ explains Cyrosch. ‘By using the data people have in their bank accounts, the right service can be offered to them at the right moment in time, which is incredibly powerful.’
‘Tink is in a unique position because of its market-leading pan-European offering, with a strong platform and customer interface to deliver the tech and the tools to make data-driven services a reality – both for established institutions and new kids on the block,’ he adds.
Dr. Cyrosch Kalateh, Tink's Regional Director DACH
What’s the big vision?
Cyrosch's plans point firmly to seeking out partnerships with great banks, fintechs, payment and loyalty scheme providers to develop the next stage of the customer experience.
This way, businesses can better understand their customers and in turn, revolutionise their user experience - using financial management tools to personalise the journey and add real value to people’s lives. He adds: ‘Combined with our capability of supporting large European players such as BNP Paribas Fortis, PayPal and Klarna, we are excited to become a trusted partner for large, growing banks and fintechs in the DACH region.’
Cyrosch also firmly believes that account access and payment solutions, as well as personalised offers and finance management, will increasingly come from more non-traditional players, such as retailers, large telcos and utility companies.
‘We have a great chance to propel not only financial services but those in related industries, to a new level of customer understanding and service,’ says Cyrosch. ‘What really intrigued me when Tink approached me was the opportunity to do this through a powerful and versatile platform. One that lets us offer the best in data handling and transparency services to help businesses build game-changing solutions and experiences. We’re providing the tools for success, to make them the stars of open banking.’
Why Tink, why now?
In Cyrosch’s time as a consultant, he’s seen tech start-ups with great potential struggle because they didn’t have the right culture or ‘vibe’ to attract talent in the numbers it takes to become a market leader, or having the technology and the user interface to truly set them apart.
‘When you see a company like Tink you want to be a part of it,’ says Cyrosch. ‘I love nothing more than to be riding Tink’s incredible success story, and to be writing it in the DACH region. Chances like this don’t come along very often in life - when they do, you grab them.’