BBVA is the first bank in Spain to hold an international developer competition, known as ‘datathon’, inviting developers to build new services, applications and contents based on its card transaction data. Innova Challenge provides third parties with data from cards and BBVA point-of-sale terminals in Madrid and Barcelona, in an anonymous way and in compliance with privacy regulations. This initiative is a first step to open the BBVA platform in order to promote innovation inside and outside the bank.
“BBVA wants to promote an open and collaborative culture between the bank and the community of developers to enable them to participate in our creative and innovation process”, said Marco Bressan, Open Platform manager at BBVA, who pointed out the importance of creating new services based on data “given its huge potential and relevance”, he added. The data source opened by BBVA is a set of aggregate transactional information owned by the bank which includes the purchases made from November 2012 to April 2013 in Madrid and Barcelona.
This data details the demographic origin of the buyers, as well as their gender and age, and their changes over 6 months. The data will be displayed in aggregate form by weeks and months, organized in spending categories: travel, food, hotels, real estate, bars, restaurants, fashion, etc. However, there is no differentiation between people or specific stores.
How to participate in Innova Challenge
The competition starts on September 24, when all those interested in taking part can register through the BBVA Innovation Center website. The BBVA data source will be available on October 1 through the BBVA Developers Portal. The projects can be submitted until December 3 and will be organized into three categories: applications for citizens, applications for businesses or the public sector and, lastly, displays.
Each of these categories has been allocated three prizes amounting to 15,000, 10,000 and 5,000 euros, respectively. This means that BBVA will give out a total of 90,000 euros to the winners. The projects will be selected by a panel of experts from BBVA and other international organizations from the world of open platforms, Big Data and innovation. In order to promote participation and the creation of an ecosystem of developers, BBVA has organized a comprehensive training program with workshops to learn to work with APIs and open data. The first one will be given free of charge on October 8 at the BBVA Innovation Center by Esteban Moro Egido, tenured professor at the Carlos III University, and experts in Big Data from BBVA.
Building on the same philosophy, a workshop will be held at the Media Lab Prado in Madrid over the following weeks, as well as other workshops in Barcelona with ESADE. Meanwhile, partnerships are being sought with other prestigious educational institutions in Spain and in other countries, given the international nature of the competition.