The Scottish bid for the development the Global Open Finance Centre of Excellence is progressing to the second stage, said UK Research and Innovation.

Last October, a Scottish consortium comprising Edinburgh University, FinTech Scotland, Scottish Enterprise, and the Financial Data And Technology Association, was formed to launch the centre and apply for funding from the Strength in Places fund.

The centre would be a “world first, providing leadership, coordination, research and capability” to support the advent of open banking.

It is one of twenty-four projects, from pharmaceuticals to aerospace, and from transport to the creative economy, that have received early-stage funding to develop full-stage bids that could lead to significant economic growth.

Professor Sir Mark Walport, chief Executive of UK Research and Innovation, said: “Our clear vision is to ensure we benefit everyone through knowledge, talent and ideas. Significant support through the Strength in Places Fund will further catalyse economic potential across the country by bringing researchers, industry and regional leadership together to drive sustained growth through world-class research and innovation.”

Stephen Ingledew, chief executive of FinTech Scotland, commented: “The Global Open Finance Centre of Excellence builds on Scotland’s heritage of financial services and enviable entrepreneurial track record combined with an enlightened and progressive culture which aligns the social and economic benefits of innovation.

“Going forward the Centre of Excellence focused on data driven innovation will support the inclusive growth objectives of Scotland, leveraging the ongoing role of international collaboration across Europe and globally with the private sector, consumer groups, academia, regulators, governments”

Jarmo Eskelinen, director of the Data-Driven Innovation initiative at Edinburgh University, added: “As a partner in the Edinburgh and South East Scotland City Region Deal, this project exemplifies all we are aiming to achieve through our Data-Driven Innovation initiative; attracting talent and investment to the region; linking world-class researchers and data analytics expertise with industry and innovating to drive new products and services.”

Danny Cusick, of Scottish Enterprise, said: “This project has the potential to bring substantial economic benefits through increased innovation and inclusive growth to firmly establish Scotland’s reputation as a world leader in Open Finance. Scotland already has exceptional capabilities in fintech and data and the Centre of Excellence demonstrates what we can achieve through collaboration to create competitive advantage for Scotland.”