Root is a new, programmable credit card for South Africa

Standard Bank and OfferZen have come together to create Root; a programmable credit card and bank account system aimed at fintech innovators.

Here’s some positive financial news, South Africa: OfferZen, in partnership with Standard Bank, have introduced a new programmable bank account and credit card aimed at promoting innovation in the financial sector.
A common problem facing fintech developers and innovators is the difficulty of interfacing with existing banks and financial platforms. Root is a system which enables developers to access a lightweight bank account with code, and eliminates the need for special access to the banking world.
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Effectively, where a developer might have to work through a bank to create special features or develop their own product, Root enables developers to build functionality on top of a bank through a lightweight platform which securely stores information in the cloud.
For example, a Root account could enable a developer to build a functional fintech product that can interact with a credit card, online bank account, mobile app, and other APIs. Such products could include – at their most elementary form, for example – the ability to send transaction data to a personal spreadsheet in Google Sheets.
Root is headed up by Louw Hopley, and is partnered with Standard Bank, where the latter provides the underlying banking services and regulatory framework that powers the platform.
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Root is slated to launch ‘before the end of June 2017’, and developers will be able to share their projects with other developers on the platform. Standard Bank has confirmed that it will offer support to scale Root apps to broader markets.
See more from Root here.
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Follow Bryan Smith on Twitter: @bryansmithSA