Co-opConnect: Open APIs Set to Disrupt Businesses in Kenya

  • A man working using a laptop. Following the Covid-19 outbreak, working from home is the new normal
    A man working using a laptop. Following the Covid-19 outbreak, working from home is the new normal
  • The Co-operative Bank on Monday, July 13, announced the opening of its APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) in a bid to foster innovation and financial technology partnerships.

    By utilising the new Co-opConnect platform, developers will be able to seamlessly integrate and manage payments in their own web and mobile applications.

    Open APIs, also called Public APIs are made available to software developers and shared freely, allowing the owner of a network-universal service to give universal access to consumers.

    Developers can sign up on the Co-operative Bank Sandbox, an environment that simulates real-world systems enabling developers to create integrations and test them.

    File image of a man using a phone
    File image of a man using a phone

    "The Bank believes in co-creation and innovation that enables people, businesses and the society to grow. It believes that innovative products and services that benefit their customers and the public, in general, are key to success.

    "Before launching an innovation, Co-op Bank ensures that it weighs the business needs and the prevailing market situation versus the opportunity. This ensures that it meets the customer need and keeps up with the changing market trends," the bank noted in a statement.

    Dubbed Co-opConnect, the Public APIs are split into two categories; account information services APIs and transactional APIs.

    Both offer various functionalities and can be built upon and integrated by developers to improve customer experiences depending on the business.

    Transactional APIs offer functionalities including internal funds transfer which enables customers to transfer funds from a Co-op Bank account to another Co-op Bank account.

    It also enables customers to use Pesalink while sending money from a Co-op Bank account to another bank account from a different bank.

    Also offered in transactional APIs is the Instant Notification Service, which notifies customers in real-time of any activity on their accounts.

    Transactional APIs also incorporate functionality allowing users to send money from a Co-operative Bank wallet to an M-Pesa mobile money wallet.

    Account information services APIs, on the other hand, offer functionalities meant to enable customers to easily access information on their accounts.

    For instance, it shows the account balance at a given time; breaking down the Cleared Balance, Booked Balance, Blocked Balance, Available Balance, Arrears Amount, Uncleared Balance and Overdraft Limit.

    It also shows the status of particular transactions, for example confirming that a cash deposit was successful.

    Among other functionalities, it also provides a mini-statement with the last 10 transactions for a given account, exchange rate inquiry and status inquiry for specific transactions.

    Co-opConnect has earned plaudits for simplifying the integration process and offering a safe and secure mode of transaction, in addition to delivering a responsive, fulfilling customer experience.

    A file image of a woman using a phone.
    A file image of a lady using a phone
    Simon Kiragu