Africa Technology

API economy

From systems to business services

Applications and their underlying data are long-established cornerstones of many organisations. All too often, however, they have been the territory of internal R&D and IT departments. From the earliest days of computing, systems have had to talk to each other in order to share information across physical and logical boundaries and solve for the inter dependencies inherent in many business scenarios. The trend toward integration has been steadily accelerating over the years. It is driven by increasingly sophisticated ecosystems and business processes that are supported by complex interactions across multiple endpoints in custom software, in-house packaged applications, and third-party services (cloud or otherwise). The growth of APIs stems from an elementary need: a better way to encapsulate and share information and enable transaction processing between elements in the solution stack. Unfortunately, APIs have often been treated as tactical assets until relatively recently. APIs, their offspring of EDI and fuel the new API economy.

The API economy provides organisations with agility around their software integration needs and can extend the lifespan of their legacy applications. Despite its potential, this trend is still only being adopted in pockets given the traditional way many companies still manage their application and integration stacks. Business-to-consumer organisations will start to become hard-pressed to adopt this sooner rather than later, due to the increased need for systems of engagement to be transformed.

The question is: Is your organisation ready to compete in this open, vibrant, and Darwinian free market?

Authors:
George Collins, Principal, Deloitte Consulting LLP
David Sisk, Director, Deloitte Consulting LLP

To learn more about the API economy, click here or contact Kamal Ramsingh, the Africa Technology Leader.

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