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Bulder Bank: a purely digital challenger bank, from idea to the Norwegian market in 10 months

Cloud-based solutions and a DevOps approach enabled the agile and goal-driven development and launch of Norwegian digital challenger, Bulder Bank from Sparebanken Vest.

Hans Kristian Flaatten

Principal Architect Consultant

The challenge

Norwegian bank Sparebanken Vest wanted to strengthen its geographical reach and grow its business within their core banking services, especially in mortgage lending and daily banking. They also wanted to challenge the traditional banking market with purely digital banking solutions that support accelerated growth and a creative competitive edge, while offering the best customer experience possible.

The solution

Through extensive co-operation with Sparebanken Vest, Tietoevry designed and delivered a Google Cloud based banking app architecture with their DevOps platform and team. This enabled the development and launch of the purely digital Bulder Bank into the Norwegian market. The lean and agile DevOps-based co-operation model also helped the Bulder Bank development team to continuously bring out new features that combine Bulder Bank’s business objectives with customer benefits and experience.

Tietoevry's DevOps services Business and technology consulting

About the customer

Bulder Bank – part of Sparebanken Vest – is a purely digital Norwegian bank launched in May 2019. As a challenger to traditional banks, it has built a solid market position with over 10,000 customers by offering a superior digital customer experience for daily banking and loan services.

Bulder Bank Sparebanken Vest

Key benefits

Bulder Bank was developed from an idea into an operating bank within 10 months.

Fast time to market

Bulder Bank was developed from an idea into an operating bank within 10 months.

The DevOps platform and operational models facilitate business targets being achieved while also improving customer value.

An agile way to enable new business

The DevOps platform and operational models facilitate business targets being achieved while also improving customer value.

DevOps and cloud-powered tools enable fast testing and implementation of new services.

Boosting customer value

DevOps and cloud-powered tools enable fast testing and implementation of new services.

A new kind of purely digital banking solution

Sparebanken Vest – Norway’s third-largest savings bank and the country’s second-oldest bank – wanted to test a totally new way to expand its business geographically and in important customer segments. They wanted a solution that would support their aim to reach potential customers in all of Norway with their core products in daily banking and mortgage lending.

The idea for a new kind of banking solution was born – one that is distinct from current banking services as a purely digital service that pushes a superior customer experience to the forefront. The next step was to bring the new banking solution to the market within less than a year, a model that would create a competitive edge for Sparebanken Vest.

This has been by far the fastest successful digital banking development process I have seen.

Markus Nordstrønen

CTO, Bulder Bank

Ambitious goals require a break from the norm

Getting to the market in less than a year meant moving away from a traditional banking technology stack to a cloud-native technology stack. All cloud options were considered, with Google Cloud selected because it had all the tools required to accelerate development. 

Bulder Bank needed a partner with a rock-solid cloud and DevOps and Kubernetes experience as well as Google Cloud know-how. The ideal partner needed a development and design team able to act fast and reliably – in a way that would empower Bulder Bank’s developers to be as efficient as possible. Based on extensive previous co-operation, Bulder Bank knew Tietoevry had substantial experience in this field and thus involved them early in the design process. Tietoevry was given a dual role: to build needed technology platforms and then consult Bulder Bank in the cloud-native application development process.

Markus Nordstrønen

Tietoevry’s cloud engineering team provided consultation and designed and implemented the cloud infrastructure needed for Bulder Bank to realize its goals. This captured public cloud benefits with a fully cloud approach. TietoEVRY also delivered a digital app platform in Google Cloud, enabling Bulder Bank to continuously develop features and functionalities and empower the developers to be in total control of this development.

In addition to adapting new technology, Bulder Bank’s team was eager to test new development methods. This led to embracing DevOps: development was executed with compact teams and tight-knit organization. All elements of development – from product management and testing to customer relations – were done in small teams. This made development and implementing changes extremely fast. Tietoevry also helped to build world-class DevOps capabilities for Bulder Bank’s team by first delivering a DevOps platform, and then a DevOps advisory and platform team supported Bulder Bank in further development.

Customers love our service, and we are able to continuously bring out new features and improvements that help our customers get a clear financial overview.

Markus Nordstrønen

CTO, Bulder Bank

From idea to fully digital bank within 10 months

What was only an idea in Autumn of 2018 was launched to the Norwegian market in May 2019. The bank operates purely digitally, with a mobile app being the main customer interface. Everything is done with two development fundamentals in mind: (1) business goals and (2) solving customer problems even better. Lean operational models and a cloud-based approach enable Bulder Bank’s development team to improve its solution in a way that is agile, fast and incorporates testing. One example of customer experience and service development going hand in hand is Bulder Bank’s commitment to offering the fastest login among all banking services.

Within 10 months, Bulder Bank went from idea to challenging the Norwegian banking market. By the end of 2020, Bulder Bank had more than 10,000 customers and a mortgage base of roughly 700 million Euros. Fast market entry and agile development also give the company a competitive edge by facilitating continuous customer experience improvements and moving new products to market. Additionally, Sparebanken Vest, owner of Bulder Bank, can now conduct agile testing of new banking concepts at Bulder Bank and adopt the winning concepts at Sparebanken Vest as well.

We have successfully tested new services, which then have been adopted also at Sparebanken Vest.

Markus Nordstrønen

CTO, Bulder Bank

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