New digital bank to launch in South Africa

Barko, a South African microfinance company, has partnered with Temenos to enter the retail banking market in the country, according to a statement from Temenos.

The microfinance organisation will use Temenos’ complete front-to-back services, allowing the bank to create banking products that it can configure and integrate with external applications.

Through its partnership with Temenos, Barko aims to bring more accessible and affordable banking to South Africans.

The investment in Temenos’ open banking platform means Barko can quickly and cost-effectively launch new banking products, from deposit and savings accounts to credit and loans.

“With Temenos modern cloud banking platform we can bring new products to market faster and at a significantly lower cost compared to banks on traditional core banking system,” Kobus de Wet, CEO at Barko, said.

“Ultimately, this means we can pass on savings with products and services that improve the financial lives of the people that bank with us.”

Barko has applied for a Mutual Banking License to operate as a full-service digital bank.

The South African microfinance firm already uses Temenos Infinity to deliver omnichannel lending with access to microfinance via a digital lending app and a network of branches.

Using open APIs, banks can also collaborate and extend banking services with other fintechs and developers.

“Barko’s entry into the South Africa retail banking market represents a significant moment for customers and the industry,” Jean-Paul Mergeai, President of International Sales at Temenos, said.

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New digital bank to launch in South Africa