Prismea Works with Ippon Technologies to Securely Launch Online Bank in Nine Months

Ippon is an AWS Advanced Consulting Partner

Executive Summary

Ippon Technologies helps Prismea use Amazon Web Services (AWS) to launch an online bank in nine months, delivering innovative services, enhancing security, and optimizing costs. Prismea — a banking startup based in France — worked with Ippon Technologies to develop new end-user features using services including Amazon Aurora, AWS Lambda, and Amazon Cognito to support core banking solution Treezor.

Banking Startup Looks to the Cloud

When France-based financial services firm Crédit du Nord wanted to launch Prismea, an online banking startup, it faced a challenge: how to quickly build and scale the bank with major financial and IT resource constraints. “Our core business is about delivering innovative banking services, not managing IT infrastructure,” says Stéphanie Biron, cofounder of Prismea.

The bank, which targets small and medium-sized businesses across France, sought to provide a mobile app and 10-minute onboarding process for customers opening bank accounts. Prismea planned to offer an extensive array of services including payments, transfers, and credit card transactions. It also had to have robust security. “Security is the foundation of any banking business,” Mrs. Biron says. “We needed a technology partner to help build and deploy a cloud-based solution that also offered strong security to meet financial services industry requirements.”

Working with Ippon Technologies to Create Customer Value for a Core Banking Solution

Initially, Prismea worked with an IT partner that recommended AWS and deployed an API layer using the core banking solution. “AWS had a breadth of managed services and security features, but the partner didn’t offer the automation we were looking for,” says Mrs. Biron.

Prismea then engaged Ippon Technologies, a Lyon-based AWS Advanced Consulting Partner. “Ippon Technologies was recommended for its strong DevOps culture and methodology that’s suited to the cloud,” says Mrs. Biron. Ippon Technologies audited Prismea’s existing IT infrastructure and suggested a complete redesign to increase security, scalability, and automation. Using the new AWS environment, Ippon Technologies designed and implemented a businessoriented backend on Treezor, the Prismea core banking solution.

Treezor relies on Amazon Aurora as its database and AWS Fargate to manage containerized applications. The solution also uses AWS Lambda for serverless compute, and Amazon Cognito to control user authentication and access for mobile apps. The solution further enhances security through Amazon GuardDuty, AWS Shield, and AWS Web Application Firewall (AWS WAF) for protection against distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks.

In addition to the production environment, Ippon Technologies created an AWS Dev/Test environment. Samuel Bally, senior cloud architect at Ippon Technologies, says, “We developed Prismea’s core banking infrastructure to provide agility and ease deployment. Everything is coded and automated to enable this.” Ippon Technologies is working to process client and banking data to deliver credit approval in one click. Data will be processed using AWS machine learning (ML) and artificial intelligence (AI) services, including Amazon SageMaker for personalizing algorithms. Prismea will also use AWS Glue to aggregate data, Amazon Athena for data visualization, and Amazon QuickSight for graphical reporting.

Launching Online Bank Two Months Faster Than Expected

Thanks to Ippon Technologies, Prismea developed the AWS infrastructure two months faster than it would have taken in an on-premises environment. Prismea launched the banking application in France in just nine months. “Working with Ippon Technologies, we tackled one of our key challenges—building and delivering our core banking system quickly, without compromising on regulatory and security requirements,” says Mrs. Biron.

A Focus on Innovation

By running on AWS, Prismea frees its operational team from infrastructure management so it can focus on developing new services. “By launching its core banking system quickly, Prismea could immediately start developing cutting-edge banking features,” says Mr. Bally.

Prismea is using a continuous integration delivery model because of the automation of AWS. The company is currently delivering 300 production runs a week with no service disruption. Additionally, because of its cloud-based innovation strategy and focus on DevOps and SecOps, Prismea can more easily attract senior IT talent.

Compliance and Data Protection

Relying on the built-in security of AWS, Prismea can meet all banking and regulatory requirements and standards, including standards for data protection and online transactions. “Without our clients’ trust, we wouldn’t have a business,” says Mrs. Biron. “Using AWS, we can provide secure data storage and strong data protection—and we can also anticipate and address any security risks.”

Optimizing Costs

Using AWS, Prismea can control its costs by adjusting usage to the day or hour. “Prismea pays only for what it uses because of the on-demand model of AWS,” says Mr. Bally. After starting its business with low monthly fees, Prismea has further reduced costs. “A traditional environment would be too expensive for a startup. Prismea’s costs are now centered on developing features, not running infrastructure,” Mr. Bally says.

Enabling International Expansion

Prismea can quickly scale its application environment as new customers are onboarded. The company is also confident that it can support growth. “We aim to expand internationally,” says Mrs. Biron. “By running on AWS, we avoided rushing application development and not planning for the future. We know we have a reliable, scalable, and cloud-native environment to drive business growth and support next-generation technologies. This gives us peace of mind.”

Prismea

About Prismea

Prismea is an online bank created by Crédit du Nord, a French financial services company. It offers online and mobile banking services to customers across France.

About Ippon Technologies

Ippon Technologies, based in France, the US, Australia, and Russia, provides consulting and software design services to global enterprises and startups. An AWS Advanced Consulting Partner, Ippon Technologies offers project development, database management, systems architecture, and cloud services.

Published November 2020