The difficulty of establishing aggregation services in a given country is roughly proportional to the number of banks serving its residents. That's the dynamic making it possible for companies with experience in the wide-open U.S. aggregation market to find success in other markets.
Most countries don't have banks from sea to shining sea. "There are countries with 10-12 banks," said Rodney Robinson, general manager of Teknowledge, Palo Alto, Calif. "If you sell to one of those banks in the country, then the other banks will probably adopt it very quickly to not be caught without an aggregation service."
However, in the U.S., it makes better sense to partner with the software companies holding relationships with a good chunk of that 12,000-bank audience. Taking that route, Teknowledge's Tekportal aggregation service will form the core of Fiserv's Account Exchange Network. Banks using any of Fiserv's family of account processing solutions will be able to join the Account Exchange Network, which will enable shared data feeds between Fiserv-powered banks.
Fiserv will also use account aggregation technology to provide a single view of a customer's banking, brokerage and insurance relationships within the financial institution. "That's one of their main plans," said Robinson. "They have so many different services that they offer these banks, and they're going to use Tekportal to aggregate all of that affinity data."
But in the end, the data from other financial institutions will provide the winning edge. "Anyone that wants to do CRM will be required to have aggregated data," said Robinson. "If you really want to know your customer, you have to know everything about your customer - not just what they have invested in your bank."