Malauzai Software and Payveris are partnering to bring next-day, person-to-person (P2P) payments to customers of First United Bank in Texas.
Kevin Carson, Chief Technology Officer for the bank said that the partnership will help his bank deal with the threat of alternative payment providers "cutting the bank out of the transaction." "By working with Malauzai and Payveris," Carson said, "our bank will be the trusted destination for customers seeking quick P2P payments."
The partnership will integrate SmartApps from Malauzai and the billpay, account-to-account transfer and P2P payments functionality of Payveris' PayItNow network. The resulting technology will bring P2P functionality to SmartApps, enabling secure P2P payments using email or text message.
Added Carson, "our local market is home to several colleges and universities and it's very important for us to serve the needs of the millennial demographic. To remain competitive, we must offer digital services that are fast, convenient and easy to use."
Payveris president Jeff Weikert said the partnership was an opportunity to offer an "integrated, seamless banking and payment solution" that provides banks and FIs with a competitive advantage while providing a superior experience for the customer "whether it's paying a bill, transferring money between financial accounts, or paying a friend."
Above: Rob Gaynor, Chief Product Officer, Malauzai Software, presenting at FinovateFall 2014 in New York.
The partnership between Malauzai and Payveris, according to both parties, will help the industry overcome major pain points that are block the way to wider adoption of person-to-person payments. Malauzai chief product officer Robb Gaynor said, " the reason P2P solutions have not taken off in a bigger way is because the current model is slow and inconvenient." Gaynor pointed to Payveris' "highly secure, digital payments platform" as key to accelerating the process as well as "keeping banks and credit unions at the center of the transactions."
Founded in 2009 and headquartered in Austin, Texas, Malauzai Software specializes in mobile and online apps for small-to-medium sized banks and credit unions. Malauzai provided the technology behind BankMobile's "millennially-focused" banking app launched in January, and unveiled its own SmartMarketing program to help promote mobile banking in December. Malauzai Software most recent deployment was its PicturePay technology taken up by Southern Bank back in October. Tom Shen is CEO and co-founder.
Eleven companies raised $232 million this week, with the all but one (disclosed) round coming in at $2 million or more. Finovate alums accounted for more than half the total with Xero taking in $111 million and SecureKey $29 million.
SecureKey also announced the appointment of Didier Serra to Executive Vice President. Serra will lead the company's consolidated sales and marketing team.
Charles Walton, SecureKey CEO said that the funding will play a key role in helping the company grow "as people, governments, and organizations worldwide embrace a future that removes the burden of passwords" while preserving both convenience and choice for consumers.
Blue Sky Capital's Greg Wolfond echoed the importance of balance between convenience and privacy. Wolfond suggested that the path to new data-enabling and critical online services is paved with the ability of companies like SecureKey to provide secure authentication.
"Today's consumers need and expect convenient access to the online services they use most, without sacrificing the critical security of their personal information," Wolfond said.
Above: SecureKey Vice President for Partner Engagement Chris Gardner demoing at FinovateFall 2010 in New York
SecureKey's primary product line includes briidge.net Exchange and briidge.net Connect. The Exchange can be used to establish "identity ecosystems" that make online enrollment easier without compromising user privacy. Account opening, age verification, and health information exchange are a few of the ways the exchange serves its users. With Connect, SecureKey provides cloud-based, multi-factor authentication protection using device-based digital IDs.
Founded in 2008, SecureKey is headquartered in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, and has offices in Boston, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C. The company recently made headlines by earning a spot in KPMG's "50 Best Fintech Innovators Report" and announcing a partnership with Oberhur Technologies to provide security for a wide range of cloud-based transactions including online banking, online payments, and eCommerce.
SecureKey demoed its technology at FinovateFall 2010 in New York, winning Best of Show honors.
Is it a contradiction that technology can make it easier for bank relationship managers and other financial professionals to do a better job of providing more "human" engagement?
That's the goal of Novabase, a new Finovate alum based in Portugal that is leveraging the cognitive computing of Watson to give financial professionals sophisticated resources to better serve their clients and customers.
You may remember Watson as the supercomputer that surprised viewers of the game show Jeopardy! with its ability to outwit its human opponents. Now that same technology that was used to answer questions ranging from cable TV personalities to New Testament geography is being used in industries ranging from transportation and telecommunications to energy and financial services.
"Our vision is to make life simpler and happier for people and businesses, through technology," the company said in response to questions about its experience at FinovateEurope 2015 in London. "Wizzio is a Novabase solution for a next generation sales tool for bank relationship managers and financial advisors that provides a unique approach to sales and engagement."
Founded in 1989
Headquartered in Lisbon, Portugal, with offices in Angola, UAE, Spain, Mozambique, and the United Kingdom
Has more than 2,000 employees
Invested more than €22 million in research and development for specialized products over the past three years
Novabase believe that the greater connectivity and greater independence ushered in by the mobile world has made a major impact on consumers' attitudes. Consumers now expect the institutions they rely on to be both more responsive and better able to meet us on our own, increasingly on-the-go terms.
Consumers also increasingly expect personalization and customized service. Not only do consumers and clients expect you to be where they are. They also expect you to know, understand, and treat them as unique individuals, with unique, specific challenges.
Technology like Novabase's Wizzio Powered by Watson can help banks and other financial institutions respond to these demands with a proactive, multichannel approach. To the extent that getting to know customers is essentially data work, technology like Wizzio handles the heavy lifting, giving the sales professional the time and energy to focus on the "personal touch".
Wizzio powered by Watson can be thought of as an "intelligent ecosystem of apps and widgets" designed to help financial professionals keep track of everything they need to do their jobs more efficiently. Information on client accounts, finances, and investments are as readily available as agenda, email, and real-time stock market information.
With Watson, the Wizzio is capable of responding to questions in natural language, and combines predictive analysis and cognitive computing to put critical and insightful information into the hands of financial professionals sooner. These time-savings equate into both more personal one-on-one time with customers as well as greater opportunity to add new clients.
Platform features include the ability to interrupt processes and return to them later without losing place, and a "meeting mode" that allows professionals to share their device with clients and keep sensitive information hidden. Wizzio powered by Watson integrates with banks' existing systems, and can be added to by third party and in-house development teams.
Novabase comes away from its first Finovate with high marks, calling the live demo format and networking environment, "refreshing" and "intimate". Datamonitor Financial gave Novabase a "5/5" rating based on originality, potential to have a long-lasting effect, game-changer potential, novelty or newness to consumer, and ability to change the market. Wrote analyst Daoud Fakhri, "it's a perfect score for Novabase's multi-channel banking platform, Wizzio."
The company sees its growth very much tied to the spread and proliferation of smart machines - from phones, to tablets, to wearables and beyond. And as computers and artificial intelligence change our ability to process and integrate data, we should anticipate more ways tools like cognitive computing can and will be applied to our daily lives.
"Wizzio will extend the degree that cognitive computing reshapes the way we work," Novabase said in a statement after the conference. "With more connected devices in the world, the role of smart machines will set a new standard for collaboration."
InvestUp (known simply as Up) launched at FinovateEurope earlier this month. The UK-based startup offers investors a single place to search for, invest in, and track multiple investments across numerous crowdfunding sites.
Up's clean user interface offers many benefits to investors:
1) Provides a single place to access crowdfunding deals hosted on multiple sites
2) Saves time by minimizing paperwork. Investors have just one account and a single portfolio that aggregates all crowdfunding investments
3) Completely free
The screenshot below shows how the filtering capability (located at top) narrows results of available campaigns that fit the user's specifications:
When the user selects a campaign they're interested in, they see more details, and can add it to their Wishlist. To invest, they select Get Access:
The 13 crowdfunding sites aggregated on the Up platform benefit by free access to more investors. The startup generates revenue from financial services advertising.
Up currently offers business loans and will soon launch equity and personal lending options. Eventually, it plans to build an auto-invest feature, offering a "set it and forget it" approach that automatically invests users' cash, according to their preferences.
There are special requirements banks must abide by when handling customers' personal identifiable information (PII) data. Trunomi helps banks safely use PII so that they can tailor services to customers and provide a better overall experience.
$2 million in funding
Started earning revenue in 2014
Founded in 2013
Headquartered in Bermuda, Dublin & Silicon Valley
Trunomi's TruLink serves as the background architecture that powers TruMobile, a system that verifies the customer's identity on their mobile device and enables them to share PII securely.
When a bank wants to use customer PII, regulations specify that customer consent:
Occurs prior to sharing
Is able to be audited
Has context for each individual experience
TruLink generates certifications that prove all of the above. Additionally, it authenticates user identity and validates questionable transactions.
Trunomi benefits both the financial institution and the end customer:
Eliminates the cost of call centers
Accesses customer PII
Offers audit-level certification of customer consent
Creates new revenue centers by expanding customer data
Offers a configurable app that's tailored to bank preferences
Ability to trade PII while maintaining privacy
Access to a clean user interface
Can respond to bank requirements in a way they're comfortable with
Trunomi's live demo video from FinovateEurope 2015 will be available on the Finovate video archives page this week.
How many Xero's are there in $110 million dollars?
The cloud accounting specialist reported Tuesday that Accel Partners will invest NZ$132.9 million by way of a share purchase valued at NZ$20 per share. Along with Matrix Capital Management, which will invest NZ$14.3 million, the investment will bring Xero's total cash to NZ$285 million, or $213 million USD.
Xero CEO Rod Drury said that the investment was "a testament to our success and our potential to become the small business SaaS platform of choice for entrepreneurs around the globe."
Accel partner Andrew Braccia pointed to Xero's plans for expansion in the United States as one of the reasons his company was enthusiastic about Xero. "Accel always looks for enduring technologies with global reach and we see the need and opportunity for millions of small businesses to grow on Xero's platform."
The New Zealand-based company plans to use the funds to support growth in both the United States and the United Kingdom. Xero also announced a major personnel change on Tuesday, appointing Russell Fujioka to U.S. President.
Above: David Pollock, Head of U.S. Partnerships, presenting at FinDEVr San Francisco 2014
The investments for both Accel Partners and Matrix Capital are expected to close in mid-March. With its investment, Accel will join Matrix in being able to participate in future share placements.
For Lincoln Savings CEO Erik Skovgard, advanced technology, mobility, and affordability were among the main reasons why he sought a partnership with Social Money. "CorePro helps us provide a next generation web and mobile bank-in-a-box type of experience," he said. Skovgard hopes the platform will help his bank attract younger customers "at a price we can afford."
Social Money CEO Scott McCormack added, "We are making it possible for banks to compete again. It shouldn't cost so much for innovation, and it certainly shouldn't cost so much to offer basic services."
The cost-savings come from being able to run the platform on a stand-alone basis, without having to integrate with legacy systems to get started. CorePro can be used for saving, checking or certificate of deposit accounts, and provides real-time transfers with card platforms, including prepaid. Read more about CorePro here.
Above: Social Money CEO Scott McCormack presenting at FinovateSpring 2012.
Between the risk involved with lending and the number of resources needed, it can be costly for banks. Nostrum Groupis helping banks on both fronts with a set of tools that reduce friction in the lending process.
At FinovateEurope 2014, Nostrum Group showed off Virtual Collector, a system that automates loan delinquency management. This year it applied for FinovateEurope and was selected to debut a new iteration of its core system that aims to make lending cheaper, faster, and safer.
Richard Carter, CEO, has an extensive background in the credit and lending space. We interviewed him recently about Nostrum's loan platform:
Finovate: In addition to its Virtual Collector, Nostrum offers loan application technology. What role does big data have here? What role do you see big data taking on in the lending industry in the future?
Carter: That's right, in fact at FinovateEurope 2015 we launched our new Virtual Finance platform, which is our fully digital loan management platform. This platform enables lenders to completely automate the loan application and servicing process, including delinquency management, which is where Virtual Collector fits in.
The focus of our efforts when developing the Virtual Finance platform was on automating a truly personal and bespoke customer experience. Big data plays a vital role in the way lenders can optimize their lending decisions, as it offers such a rich source of insight to inform their scorecards.
The driver of all of this of course is that smartphone adoption is nearing saturation. A person's Facebook activity can probably tell you much more about their loan affordability than bank statements from six months ago for example and therefore lenders can expect to make better lending decisions and improve the performance of their loan book.
On a more simplistic level, the interaction of the applicant with the site can be used to supplement the lending decision. If a customer applies for the largest loan amount available with the shortest term in milliseconds and skims through the T&C's are they entering into a loan agreement with strong intent to pay?
Finovate: What can you tell us in the way of metrics?
Perhaps the most telling metric is the fact that Nostrum's lending platform processes a loan application every 10 seconds on behalf of our clients. When you consider that we only employ around 80 staff, the efficiencies of automation are clear.
Historically (and even now), some paper based lenders would take several weeks to confirm their decision on a loan application. Using our systems this can be done within seconds, but not only that, we can have the funds in the applicant's bank account within minutes. We've not quantified the financial or operational benefits to lenders because, quite frankly, the case in favour of automation is an overwhelmingly compelling one. However, you'd call out the ability to process applications and service queries without the requirement for agents as a major overhead reduction. The flip side is that we know customers want to engage in this manner, so that will drive acquisition.
The strong demand for our product shows how the lending industry is transforming. Over the last two financial years our turnover has increased by 137% and based on our current line of sight of our order book, this digital trend is set to continue for some time to come. You only have to see how many banks have created senior digital leaders to understand that this isn't a short-term play.
Finovate: Do you view alternative lending sites, such as Lending Club, as competition or complementary to traditional bank lending?
We see alternative lenders as complimentary because in most instances they are fulfilling demand for loans in areas of the market where banks don't want to lend. The alternative lending sector has grown quickly though and combines the latest technology with highly efficient operating models, so the threat to the banks is an increasingly real one. On a slightly controversial note, we would highlight payday lenders as having driven technology adoption. They pushed high levels of automation through their lending operations - they had limited appetite to staff up contact centers, so the whole application process was automated including electronic signatures on agreements and immediate disbursements. That legacy is now continuing through mainstream lending as customers demand immediacy of service with mainstream banks and other product providers.
The challenge the alternative lenders face is whether they can scale up their operations to compete not just on rate, but in terms of the volumes of business they can write. The question that needs to be asked is whether these alternative lenders are trying to supply a product that customers want, or do they just represent a great idea looking for a home? Looking back at previous examples, prepaid cards were in a similar stage of maturity, and a great product, but lack of demand stifled growth.
Digital banks now face a similar journey, and our view is that the most successful alternative lenders and digital banks will find themselves being acquired by the major banks, who will inevitably retain the vast majority of the customers. At the end of the day, the banks or lenders who have the customers are the ones who will be the winners. That's generally the case in most industries.
In the UK, for example, we are already seeing collaboration between major banks and peer-to-peer lenders, to pool resources and drive progress to critical mass.
Finovate: Tell us an original fact about Nostrum Group that you've never before shared.
The fact I would really like to tell you is the list of high street retailers and well-known global consumer brands who use our systems to provide finance facilities to their customers. We've never shared this before because we're not allowed to name most of our clients.
So, although I'd like to tell you, I'm not allowed! However, what I can say is that if you search for a list of the top 20 UK retail brands you'll find at least six of our current clients, and nearly the same number again who we are actively in talks with.
Finovate: As CEO, what past experiences do you have that help you provide lenders with a better way to serve borrowers?
My entire career has been spent working in technology in financial services, specifically in the lending industry. So I'm a subject matter expert and I've got experience and relationships that span three decades. I've been at the heart of the industry through boom and bust periods, and some of the most pivotal innovations the market has experienced including telephone banking, internet banking, and most recently the dawn of the cloud, social media, smartphones and tablets.
I think what really helps me to add value to our clients though is the simple fact that I'm a consumer myself, and one who is fascinated by technology and gadgets, and obsessive about customer service. I follow innovations and success stories across consumer industries with great interest and these have been the source of many sparks of inspiration for our own technology.
I can sit down with our clients and talk to them from combined perspectives of a technology provider, a lending industry expert, and an active and passionate consumer. I think it's a combination they value.
After previewing the news weeks ago, Nutmeg is making good on its plan to provide a personal pension service for investors in the U.K.
"We have listened to our customers and delivered what they truly want," Nutmeg CEO Nick Hungerford said. "In an industry embroiled in hidden charges, fees and complexity, our transparency promise will be a welcome reassurance to customers."
The service is a partnership between Nutmeg, which will invest and manage the pensions, and Hornbuckle Mitchell, which will provide technology to serve and administer the pensions.
Nutmeg is an "online discretionary investment manager" in the words of CEO Hungerford. The technology leverages investors' unique attitudes toward money to help align their goals, investment risk tolerance for the specific goal, and ability to save for that goal into personalized portfolios. Nutmeg actively manages the portfolios, including regular rebalancing, and provides a rewards program that can help lower fees further.
Nutmeg's personal pension plans will be tailored to the needs of individual investors, as well, and will also use exchange-traded funds (ETFs) to ensure low-costs and broad diversification. The minimum investment is £5,000. There is an annual management fee between 0.3% and 1% depending on assets under management. The fee includes the VAT.
Above: left to right: Jono Hey, Head of User Experience, and Nick Hungerford, CEO, at FinovateEurope 2012
"The notion of receiving bi-annual pension statements in the post is incredibly archaic," said Hungerford in Money Marketing's coverage of the news. "You should be able to see where your pension pot is invested and how it's performing whenever you want."
In what amounts to almost double its previous funding round, Betterment has pulled in $60 million in VC investment. The series D round was led by Francisco Partners, a technology-focused private equity firm. Existing investors Bessemer Venture Partners, Menlo Ventures and Northwestern Mutual also contributed.
The new installment boosts Betterment's total funds to $105 million and will be used to speed transactions and rollovers for its 65,000 customers, as well as enhance branding for advisor apps and services.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Betterment is now valued at $400 to $500 million. In comparison, competitors Personal Capital and Wealthfront are valued at $250 million and $700 million, respectively.
In a conversation with Investment News, Betterment CEO, Jon Stein, stated, "We didn't need to raise the money today," He says it still has $20 million in the bank from its last funding round. However, he goes on, "We're getting a lot of interest from investors."
Betterment, which manages about $1.4 billion in assets, fits in the "robo-advisor" category; it seeks to disrupt the wealth management space with specialized algorithms and tools that use automation to lower the cost of a personal advisor service. CB Insights reports that robo-advisors raised a cumulative $290 million in funding last year, double the amount raised in 2013.
The number of deals this week (12) didn't set any records. But there were some doozies including three greater than $30 million, two of which are Finovate alums: Betterment ($60 mil) and Pindrop Security ($35 mil).
The total amount raised was $236 million.
There was one major exit this week: Finovate alum LoopPay was purchased by Samsung, presumably to beef up its handset in competition with Apple Pay.
Following are deals by size announced between Feb 14 thru 20:
Finsphere, a company that uses mobile phone location data to authenticate a consumer's identity, announced $1.8 million in new funding last week. The new round is internal, with an additional contribution from an unnamed investor. Its funding now totals $33 million.
More notably, the Bellevue-based company partnered with Visa to offer what the credit card company is calling Mobile Location Confirmation. Visa will use Finsphere to ensure the GPS location of the customer's smartphone matches the location their credit card is swiped. This helps eliminate unnecessary purchase declines, while ensuring the purchase isn't fraudulent.
In a dovetail announcement this week, Finsphere also reported that it will bring retail banking executive Deanna Oppenheimer on board as a strategic advisor.
Forgive me for being a Finovate fanboy. But when Apple unveiled its Apple Pay technology last fall, one of my first thoughts was about Finovate alum and digital mobile wallet innovator, LoopPay.
Apparently, Samsung was thinking the same thing.
Arguably the biggest mobile payments news since the Apple Pay announcement, Samsung has purchased LoopPay, for an undisclosed amount. LoopPay, which took home Best of Show honors in its debut demonstration at FinovateSpring 2014, has leveraged its expertise in magnetic stripe technology (MST) to produce a secure, non-NFC-based, mobile payment solution. With Samsung's acquisition, the technology will likely become one of the major competitors to Apple Pay.
Writing at the LoopPay blog, said the company would become a "wholly owned subsidiary of Samsung Electronics America" and will continue to "innovate and operate" out of its Boston, Massachusetts headquarters.
For its part, Samsung talked about LoopPay as helping Apple's biggest hardware rival build "the smartest, most secure, user-friendly mobile wallet experience." An alliance between Samsung and LoopPay had been rumored since December, according to this reporting from Gigaom. And a major investment last summer also helped raise LoopPay's profile - and hint at the technology's potential for wider acceptance.
Above: Loop CEO Will Graylin at FinovateSpring 2014
Margaret Keane, President and CEO of Synchrony Financial, whose firm participated in last year's funding, added: "This is great news for our customers who can access their cards and make payments using LoopPay's contactless MST technology."
"We look forward to working with LoopPay and others to deliver secure mobile payment solutions for all our 60 million active accounts."
Alkami Technology develops online banking solutions for companies and institutions in the financial services industry. The company's Online Relationship Builder will provide what Patelco CU president and CEO Erin Mendez called "a modern, sophisticated digital banking platform to achieve a unified banking experience." The credit union will also be upgrading its mobile app and working to encourage its processors to support Apple Pay as part of the overall enhancement to its digital banking options.
Headquartered in Plano, Texas, Alkami Technology has raised more than $50 million, with its most recent fundraising bringing in more than $23 million of that amount in December. The company is an alum of Finovate Startup 2009, where Alkami Technology demoed as "iThryv."
A major infusion of capital has put the total funding for Pindrop Security at more than $42 million.
The leader of the $35 million Series B round was described in the Atlanta Business Chronicle as a "new West Coast investor." The Chronicle adds that the new investor has valued Pindrop at more than $200 million.
The new capital will help Pindrop expand its operations. The Atlanta-based company says it will add 100 jobs in engineering, software development, and sales and marketing - as well as look for a new, larger workspace.
Pindrop Security specializes in combating phone fraud for enterprise call centers. Using acoustic fingerprinting, Pindrop's technology able to tell the difference between fraudulent and authentic callers. The company's services include a database more than 300,000 phone numbers associated with 40,000 phone fraud "fingerprints", a fraud detection system to prevent call spoofing, and real-time call forwarding protection.
And because of the growing use of phones as part of a multi-factor authentication process that requires an out-of-band component, Pindrop also sees its technology as a way to make sure that the phone is the strongest link.
Above: Pindrop Security CEO Vijay Balasubramaniyan at FinovateFall 2012
Pindrop Security partnered in AGNOTiO in May to help call centers adapt to safety concerns from mobile customers. And in December, the company teamed up with Contact Solutions and IDology to develop technology to defend against IVR (interactive voice response) fraud. Pindrop Security launched its combined voice biometric/phoneprinting fraud detection system last year, as well as its NCE mobile NFC payments solution.
Headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia and founded in 2011, Pindrop Security demoed at FinovateFall 2012 in New York. Vijay Balasubramaniyan is CEO.
The investment takes the company's total funding to more than $120 million.
Because most businesses still rely on manual processes for accounts payable and accounts receivable, Bill.com CEO and founder René Lacerte believes there is a "significant market opportunity" for Bill.com and its banking partners. Senior market manager for Silicon Valley Bank, Jacob Moseley praised Bill.com's growth and put the company "at the center of the digital payments space."
"Bill.com tackles a problem that plagues small business," Moseley said, "and distills it down to a simple solution for paying bills and getting paid."
Existing investors also participating in the round were:
American Express Ventures
Napier Park Global Capital
Scale Venture Partners
Lacerte said the funding will help the company grow its core technology and offer its services across the U.S.
Above: Bill.com CEO and founder, René Lacerte at FinovateSpring 2012
Forbes.com contributor, Ben Kepes writes "that's a lot of cash for something as unsexy as Bills." But the investment strongly suggests that sexy is as sexy does. According to the company, Bill.com is used by three of the top 10 banks in the U.S. and 35 of the top 100 accounting firms, and is seated "at the intersection point between banks, the accounting software providers, and businesses." More than 600,000 network members use the technology to process more than $19 billion in payments a year.
CNBC's coverage of the funding includes a breakdown of Bill.com's previous funding rounds, as well as a peek into the company's growth plans (190 employees by the end of 2015, up from the current 140), and potential IPO ("still two to three years" away). The CNBC column quotes Mozilla CFO Jim Cook, whose company spends "thousands of dollars a month" on the technology, citing both cost-savings and a superior audit trail as reasons why he finds the technology "easier and more robust."
Founded in 2006 and headquartered in Palo Alto, California, Bill.com demoed its technology as part of FinovateSpring 2012.
A special thanks to our scribes in social media. Our Twitter feed (#Finovate) continues to be a great way to hear and be heard - from the first demo on Tuesday through the naming of the Best of Show winners Wednesday afternoon.
With that in mind, here's a sampler of some of the more colorful commentary and insightful observations from FinovateEurope 2015.
Thanks to everyone who participated and we'll see you in San Jose for FinovateSpring 2015 in San Jose!
It was another blockbuster week with 13 companies raising a total of $695 million. However, $500 million of that was not a pure fintech play, as China's Ant Financial (which runs Alipay) took at 25% stake in Indian mobile payments & ecommerce hub, One97 which runs Paytm. Even without that gargantuan deal, there was still $200 million invested into the sector, with $125 million of that (63%) put into the lending sector and $61million (31%) earmarked for billing & payments.
The total included one Finovate alum, AdviceGames ($570,000), which demoed at last week's FinovateEurope (demo videos will be available at Finovate.com by the end of the month).
Here are deals by size announced between 7 Feb and 13 Feb 2015 (in order of magnitude):
If there is anything more exciting than the first Finovate conference of the year, it's seeing who will be the year's first Best of Show award winning companies.
After two days of fintech presentations and demonstrations, our audience of more than 1,100 has shared its opinion on which technologies at FinovateEurope 2015 stood out from the rest of a truly impressive pack.
Here are this year's winners, in alphabetical order:
Avoka for its three-minute loan application that promises to deliver the fastest onboarding experience in the world.
CoinJar for its technology that enables consumers to buy, sell, and use digital and traditional forms of currency any way they choose - from dollars to bitcoins.
ebankIT for its omnichannel and social banking solution that maximizes interaction between FIs and their clients.
eToro for its innovations in social trading and investing for Generation Y.
Jumio for its credentials-management technology, Netverify, that turns mobile devices into ID document-scanning terminals.
mBank & i3D for their interactive, digital retail-branch concept.
Meniga for Market Match, its transaction-data analytics and enrichment engine.
As always, thanks to everyone who attended and participated in FinovateEurope 2015. We'll see you next year!
Notes on methodology:
1. Only audience members NOT associated with demoing companies were eligible to vote. Finovate employees did not vote.
2. Attendees were encouraged to note their favorites during each day. At the end of the last demo, they chose their three favorites.
3. The exact written instructions given to attendees: "Please rate (the companies) on the basis of demo quality and potential impact of the innovation demoed."
4. The seven companiesappearing on the highest percentage of submitted ballots were named Best of Show.
5. Go here for a list of previous Best of Show winners.