Here we take a look at the success story of Memo Bank, the first independent bank to be created in France in the last fifty years, that has just completed a new fundraising round of €13 million. I will examine why and how they chose to build a fast, innovative, and secure banking system from scratch using Elixir as the programming language of choice.

‘The kind of bank we wanted simply didn’t exist; so, we decided to build it.’

This was the ambitious starting point for the genesis of Memo Bank. It was founded in 2017 and serves the European small and medium businesses (SMB) market, helping clients to manage cash flows and fund their growth. The French based bank provides all the services you’d expect from a business bank, from current accounts to credit lines.

As Memo Lead DeveloperJérémie Matinez explains in his post ‘Why Elixir? An alchemy between backend and banking’, the advantage of building from the ground up, was that they could incorporate the most efficient procedures and modern technologies into their systems from the very start. The guiding principle was that, when it comes to banking, data, its accuracy, accessibility and security, was of paramount importance. Also, to comply with financial services regulations and for customer trust, Memo needed to build a system that is always available anytime, from any device. Combined, these mission-critical requirements led to the decision to adopt Elixir for the core banking system and all of the other backend applications too.

Elixir is a programming language that can be adopted right throughout the tech stack. It is designed to combine Ruby’s familiar syntax with guaranteed performance, scalability, and resilience. Memo was particularly attracted to building in Elixir to leverage its ease of development and testability, necessary when needing 100% reliability for a FinTech system. Memo has found that Elixir offers them the perfect balance between performance and features to provide them with the reliable structure to facilitate their ambitions at scale and provide high availability for reliable real-time transactions. Also, the Elixir developer community is very friendly and welcoming and the ecosystem is growing all the time.

Overall the Memo Bank system uses modern tools and processes and is designed for speed. The transactional core is now fully powered by Elixir to deliver on its mission of maintaining customer account records with the highest possible availability and reliability, easily adaptable to new customer needs and produces accounting and regulatory reporting in real-time.

What this success story shows is that whether you need to start from scratch or you already have an infrastructure to integrate with, Elixir is a proven, sound technological choice to build software that will adapt to your business and stand the test of time and scale. The Erlang Solutions team has worked closely with the Elixir core team since its inception. Whether you’re new to Elixir, looking to grow your team, add new functionality or integrate with a new system, we’re here to help you make it happen.

This article is based on the blog post ‘Why Build A Bank In Elixir - Memo Bank’s Story’, you can read the full article here