FINOS In The News: Open Source and FinTech: Q&A with FINOS’ Gabriele Columbro

December 10, 2020

In a recent Mojaloop Foundation community meeting, Executive Director Paula Hunter interviewed FINOS Executive Director Gabriele Columbro. Here is an excerpt from that interview between Paula Hunter (PH) and Gabriele Columbro (GC):



PH: What are some of the challenges large organizations face regarding OSS?

GC: It starts by understanding the players in this ecosystem. Three or four years ago, banks told me, “No, we do not use open source.” And so, what we focused on with banks was turning this consumption into contribution and making the case that upstream contribution is the one that ultimately delivers the ROI of open source. If you need to maintain your own copy of a piece of software that exists out there, it might as well go proprietary, which — again, from a corporate standpoint — will cost you more than just buying a piece of software. We’ve focused on why banks, at the executive level, should be considering open source as a pillar of their technology strategy. And then we focused on making sure that we removed friction.

From a legal standpoint, there are still many myths to debunk in some compliance organizations about open source as a technology toolchain, Some organizations don’t have a way to approve contributors. And, when you’re talking about corporate participation in an open source project, of course, you need to make sure that corporate legal agreements (CLAs) are in place and all the legal framework is there. So, there’s been a lot of enabling through getting the executives on board first, and then removing friction.

Then, on the flip side, fintech vendors are our next big challenge. We’re getting more and more engagement from vendors, and I think there are many potential inroads and commercial opportunities there. It’s easier now to get executives and developers on board with the idea of contributing to open source.” 

The full article can be found here