Platform Wars Begin

Becoming a platform is the new business battle cry.

Citi is the latest to join the fray. It announced the addition of three new API partners in its effort to becoming an Open API platform for its customers.

EGL Tours, Fortress and Watsons will join the Citi API Ecosystem, allowing Citi cardholders to use their points to pay for products and services using the Citi Pay with Points API.

The announcement follows a successful launch of Citi Pay with Points service on HKTVmall, a popular online shopping mall, in March 2018.

“In 2017, we became the first bank in Hong Kong to launch an open API platform to give developers and consumer brands direct access to our APIs for building innovative solutions that benefit customers…Through our ever growing list of API partners spanning different industries, we are moving closer to our ultimate goal of bringing banking services to where customers need them and when they need them,” Lum Choong Yu, Head of Cards and Unsecured Lending at Citibank Hong Kong, said.

Last week, Singapore Airlines launched KrisPay, a blockchain-based wallet that allows mileage customers to use their miles to pay fully or partially for products.

The technology was co-developed with KPMG Digital Village and Microsoft.

Eighteen merchants from various categories are now part of the program and it works based on a QR based system.

“By creating a miles-based digital wallet which integrates the use of miles into their daily lives, KrisFlyer members have yet another way to use miles instantly on everyday transactions,” Singapore Airlines CEO, Goh Choon Phong said.

The initiative is part of the carrier's efforts to become a digital airline and add more value to its loyalty program members.

“This groundbreaking development in which we will be using blockchain technology to ‘digitalise’ KrisFlyer miles is a demonstration of the investment we are making to significantly enhance the digital side of our business for the benefit of our customers. It is in line with our recently unveiled Digital Innovation Blueprint, under which we aim to be the world’s leading digital airline,” Goh added.