Ondot Systems Unveils Card Control Integration Platform

Card control innovator Ondot Systems released its multi-interface card control integration platform today. The San Jose, California-based company, which won Best of Show at FinovateSpring 2014, has combined a server-side API, mobile apps, and an HTML5 framework to give FIs the ability to add card control technology to their mobile banking solutions. “Much as Facebook Messenger fits completely within Facebook, Ondot’s Mobile Card Services platform can sit perfectly within any financial institutions’ mobile banking app,” Ondot Systems Senior Director of Product and Professional Services, David Golden said. “(This) drives more mobile engagement as consumers establish their own card usage preferences.”

Golden credited mobile card control services for providing banks with average revenue gains of $30 per user per year, and emphasized the importance of a friction-free experience to ensure continued – to say nothing of increased – card usage. “When it comes to delivering a great customer experience, consumers demand seamless performance from all of their banks’ mobile services,” Golden said. And seamlessness, he added, was key to enabling FIs to “benefit from increased card use, reduced card fraud, and greater digital engagement.”

Pictured: Ondot Systems Executive Vice President Rachna Ahlawat demonstrating Ondot’s Mobile Card Services at FinovateAsia 2016.

Each component of Ondot’s Card Control platform is designed to make card control services an easy feature to be added by FIs and used by consumers. The server side API gives FIs the ability to establish the look and feel of the solution, while the HTML 5 framework means that going forward banks will be able to introduce new card control features faster. And by locating the card controls app inside the FI’s mobile banking app, the services are accessible via the same single sign-on process. This ensures that bank customers enjoy a consistent UI and UX across all mobile devices. Also available as a customizable, white-label, standalone card control app, Ondot’s mobile platform provides a range of card services including on/off switching, spending limits, fraud alerts, as well as geolocation-, transaction-, and merchant-specific controls.

Founded in 2011 and headquartered in San Jose, California, Ondot Systems demonstrated its Mobile Card Services at FinovateAsia 2016. In May, Ondot and fellow Finovate alums Malauzai Software and Vantiv teamed up to offer a youth spending solution, Family Manager: SmartKid Control. The company has raised $28 million in funding, including a $10 million venture round in 2016. Ondot shared its thoughts on the challenge of “friendly fraud” and the solution of mobile card controls in a guest post for Finovate earlier this month.

SuperMoney Launches Auto Loan Offer Engine

During the debut of their loan offer comparison tool at FinovateSpring 2017 in May, SuperMoney promised more to come. “Our goal is to extend the framework we developed into all lending-related verticals initially,” SuperMoney CEO Miron Lulic explained, “and then to other financial services where consumers can benefit from apples-to-apples comparisons and transparency.”

Last week SuperMoney embarked upon this expansion with the unveiling of its auto loan offer engine. With 20 participating auto lenders on board, SuperMoney is now able to offer comparisons between secured and unsecured loans, refinancing, and private-party auto loans all from the same platform. This means that potential auto loan borrowers can submit one online loan application and get multiple auto loan offers to choose from. Calling the traditional auto financing model “antiquated,” Lulic emphasized the ease of use of SuperMoney’s technology. “These days buying an airline ticket is fast and easy. We’ve brought that same great comparison shopping experience to the auto loan industry.”

Pictured (left to right): SuperMoney CEO Miron Lulic and Managing Partner Harry Langenberg demonstrating the SuperMoney loan offer engine at FinovateSpring 2017.

SuperMoney’s auto loan comparison engine adds a new element to the car buying experience, essentially giving car buyers the opportunity to “negotiate” over the price of financing instead of just being able to haggle over the price of the car itself. “Paying a high interest rate can cost you many times more than what you’re likely to shave off the purchase price of your vehicle, regardless of your negotiating skills,” Lulic added. He used the example of a 60-month loan with a 3% APR compared to the same loan with an APR that was twice as large. The difference over the life of the loan was more than 10% of the car price.

The problem, according to Lulic, is the lack of transparency combined with a misunderstanding of the how auto financing works. “Dealerships can hide interest hikes behind longer terms precisely because they know most borrowers focus on the monthly payment amount, not the overall cost,” Lulic noted. SuperMoney’s auto loan offer engine is free and uses a soft pull to avoid affecting the applicant’s credit. Borrowers can search and compare offers based on total cost and monthly payment, as well as get a breakdown on additional fees such as origination fees and any prepayment penalties. Among the platform’s lending partners are AutoPay, Springboard Auto, and USAA.

In a conversation with AutoFinanceNews, Lulic underscored the value of the solution to subprime consumers who have limited – and often expensive – options when it comes to financing a car. Between a lack of understanding about personal finance and their own income challenges, subprime auto buyers are those who have the most to gain from a solution that brings transparency to the financing experience. “We can bring these direct lenders to the table who give some more savings on these interest costs than if they just went to some used-car dealership and took whatever high interest-rate loan that was offered to them,” Lulic said.

Founded in 2013 and headquartered in Santa Ana, California, SuperMoney demonstrated its loan offer comparison tool at FinovateSpring 2017. Read our Finovate Debut post introduction to the company from earlier this year.

HotDocs Integrates with Data Management Solutions Provider, AdvoLogix

Document automation specialist HotDocs has announced a new integration. The company has partnered with cloud-based legal data management solutions provider, Advologix, to combine its interview, assembly, and template services with Advologix’s data, workflows, and “best of breed document automation.” The result, according to Advologix VP of Product Development Steve Stockstill, is an “end-to-end cloud-based document assembly experience.”

HotDocs COO Steve Spratt said the partnership would lead to “greater efficiency and accuracy to the law firms and legal teams using the combined solution.” He pointed to the ease of integration, courtesy of HotDocs’ APIs, which will enable legal professionals to build documents automatically as part of their business workflow.

Pictured: HotDocs Chief Technology Officer Mark Settle demonstrating new enhancements to the HotDocs platform at FinovateSpring 2017.

HotDocs’ technology enables the automatic generation of documents ranging from standard correspondence to complex contracts such as trusts and wills. Deployed in verticals ranging from banking and insurance to legal and the public sector, HotDocs’ software reduces costs, improves accuracy and efficiency, encourages standardization, and is available on site, on the desktop, or as a cloud-based service. The technology can be used as a standalone solution or integrated into a company’s workflow, document management or case management systems.

During HotDocs’ demo this spring, Mark Settle and Julie Rotz presented the example of a document processor at a large global bank who produces financial agreements for bank customers. On a good day, Settle said, this processor could generate three or four of such agreements. “These agreements require a long and tedious process that ends only when everyone agrees that most of the errors are probably gone,” Settle explained, “and that the risk of a customer receiving a document with errors in it is low.” In contrast, HotDocs enables document processors to select from a variety of document templates and then rely on a dynamic questionaire (“interview”) to add the necessary elements. Using the processor’s answers and the business rules embedded in the template, HotDocs is able to generate an accurate, perfectly-formatted, Microsoft Word document “in just a fraction of the time” it takes to complete similar documents manually. Templates can be modified by the document processor to add business rules and logic. Settle showed this by adding a conditional region to the template that will include certain language in the output document if the individual reading the document responds in a certain way. Completed templates can be shared with colleagues via the HotDocs Hub.

Founded in 1996 and headquartered in Edinburgh, U.K., HotDocs demonstrated its technology at FinovateSpring 2017. The company, which also maintains a U.S. office in Lindon, Utah, has more than a million end users across more than 11,000 client companies in more than 60 countries. In a very busy June, HotDocs teamed up with technology consulting and ECM solution provider, General Networks Corporation, enjoyed the “biggest and best global user conference” in its history, and appointed Mark Settle, who led the company’s FinovateSpring 2017 presentation earlier this year, to Chief Technology Officer. This spring, HotDocs was honored at the Digital Technology Awards, picking up Company of the Year and International Technology Star awards. Russell Shepherd is founder and CEO.

LendingRobot and NSR Invest to Form Biggest Robo Advisor in Marketplace Lending

P2P lending robo advisor LendingRobot will join NSR Invest, creating what the company called in a statement “the largest independent robo advisor in the alternative lending space.” LendingRobot explained in its blog that the “websites, operating, and trading systems” of each platform will continue to function as usual for the time being as the companies prepare to combine the two businesses. Formally, the acquisition involves Lend Core, the parent company of NSR Invest, acquiring Algorithmic Inc. and its assets, which include LendingRobot.

The new entity is expected to bring a variety of new innovations to the P2P alternative lending space, and LendingRobot pointed to its Lending Robot Series Fund, as an example of the types of products customers will see more of in the future. As reported in LendAcademy, the combined company will have more than 8,000 clients and $150 million in assets under management. NSR Invest co-founder and CEO Bo Brustkern will serve as CEO, with LendingRobot CEO and co-founder Emmanuel Marot remaining as a special advisor.

“We have long respected the work of the LendingRobot team and recognize that our companies are pursuing a common goal,” Brustkern explained. He added that the combination of the two companies will deliver “enhanced capabilities to our combined client bases today, and big plans for the future.” Marot highlighted the fact that the two companies had “taken different tracts to provide similar services” and that the time had come to marry “complimentary strengths.”

LendingRobot provides investors with the opportunity to invest in P2P loans as an asset class. The company’s platform uses machine learning and artificial intelligence to spot loans with risk and return profiles that suit individual investor preferences. LendingRobot automates loan selection to ensure that investor portfolios remain diversified and can be configured to continually-invest sidelined cash. Alternative lending platforms accessible through LendingRobot include fellow Finovate alums, Lending Club and Prosper.

Founded in 2012 and headquartered in Seattle, Washington, LendingRobot demonstrated its LendingRobot Dashboard at FinovateSpring 2016. Prior to its acquisition by NSR Invest, the company had raised $3 million in funding from investors including Runa Capital and Club Italia Investimenti.

Finovate Alumni News

On Finovate.com

  • 12 Alums Earn Their Place on Inc. 5000 List
  • LendingRobot and NSR Invest to Form Biggest Robo Advisor in Marketplace Lending

Around the web

  • Arxan Technologies takes home the bronze in 9th Annual 2017 Golden Bridge Awards for Innovation in Technology.
  • The American Genius profiles Checkbook.io.
  • TSYS enters agreement to become official payment processor of the National Golf Course Owners Association.
  • Tyfone joins JLR incubator to boost its involvement in the auto industry
  • Actiance announces general availability of Vantage 2017.

This post will be updated throughout the day as news and developments emerge. You can also follow all the alumni news headlines on the Finovate Twitter account.

KeyBank to Implement Jemstep Advisor Pro

When Jemstep was acquired by Invesco a year and a half ago, Invesco CEO Martin Flanagan highlighted the importance of combining technology and human insight to produce better investment outcomes for customers. Today’s news that Jemstep has partnered with KeyBank’s Key Investment Services (KIS), provides another opportunity for Invesco’s roboadvisor to prove Flanagan right.

Marc Vosen, Key Investment Services president, called Jemstep “a clear choice” for the firm, underscoring the company’s “proven, cost-effective platform” and integrations with a number of KeyBank partners. “And as a subsidiary of Invesco,” Vosen added, “I know they will be there tomorrow.” As part of the deal, Key Investment Services will deploy Jemstep Advisor Pro, a white-label, robo advisor that provides tiered investment services and advisor access levels to enable financial professionals to work with a variety of different customer segments. The platform guides investors toward appropriate investments by analyzing responses to a customizable risk tolerance survey, and provides both integrated trading and portfolio rebalancing.

Today’s partnership comes a month after Jemstep announced a deal with independent financial advisory firm network, Advisor Group. Phoenix, Arizona-based Advisor Group serves more than 5,000 advisors and oversees $160 billion in client assets. In February, Jemstep partnered with SSG in a deal that would give more than 1,500 RIA client firms access to its Advisor Pro platform. Founded in 2008 and headquartered in Los Altos, California, Jemstep demonstrated its Portfolio Manager at FinovateSpring 2013. The company had raised $15 million in funding previous to its acquisition in January 2016.

Finovate Alumni News

On Finovate.com

  • Urban FT Bids to Acquire Digiliti Money.

Around the web

  • First Tennessee Bank goes live with mobile banking app from D3 Banking.
  • Alpha Payments Cloud partners with Australia Post to launch Alpha Commerce Hub.
  • IBM Singapore inks memorandum of understanding with Pacific International Lines to trial blockchain-based, supply chain solutions for businesses.
  • Trulioo’s Global Gateway earns first place in the Verification/Identity Checks category of Market Fintech Limited’s 2017 RegTech Performance Report.
  • FICO Customer Communications Services helps China Guangfa Bank Credit Card Center lower collection costs.
  • Liferay launches initiative to provide new resources for its open source developer community.
  • Featurespace selected by IATA to provide leading fraud protection solution.
  • Bluefin Payment Systems and ACEware Systems Partner for PCI-Validated P2PE.

This post will be updated throughout the day as news and developments emerge. You can also follow all the alumni news headlines on the Finovate Twitter account.

Behalf Teams Up with FinWise Bank to Boost Small Business Lending Options

Utah-based FinWise Bank, a subsidiary of All West Bancorp, is partnering with alternative small business lender Behalf. Together the companies hope to provide a broader range of financing solutions to a greater number of SME clients. “We founded Behalf in advocacy of small businesses and solving their working capital needs with innovative technology solutions is our central focus,” company co-founder and CEO Benjy Feinberg said. “Partnering with FinWise allows us to expand our product offering and serve more customers with financial tools that help them grow,” he added.

Behalf enables its merchant partners to offer business clients instant credit and flexible payment terms at the point of sale.  In fact, term flexibility is the key area of focus for Behalf, especially because it is a key pain point for many small businesses. By paying vendors directly “on behalf” of small businesses – as well as managing repayment and collections – Behalf gives small businesses the ability to match financing terms with the needs and timetable of their business, not the other way around. “Now she has the time to grow her business, and the credit to grow her business because she now has the terms that she needs,” Feinberg said, explaining how the platform worked for small business owners during his company’s FinovateFall demo. At the same time, he added, vendors enjoy working with Behalf because they get paid on day one as opposed to day 29 or day 89.

Behalf produces credit decisions in real-time. Business clients provide personal and business addresses, as well as a social security number, and Behalf tells them what size credit line the business qualifies for. Businesses can use the line of credit for both online and offline purchases, and the size of the client’s available line of credit increases each time the client pays off Behalf. Rather than negotiating terms with multiple vendors, Behalf Director of Product Andrew Abshere explained, the Behalf client now has flexible terms with a single payee. “She can take these terms with her anywhere, to any vendor,” Abshere said. He then showed how clients set up vendor payments directly through the Behalf platform, adjust the length and frequency of repayment, and add bank details to enable automatic repayment. Once the bank information is authorized, Behalf contacts the client’s vendors by e-mail, notifying them that Behalf will be paying “on behalf” of the client. The process takes less than five minutes.

David Tillis, VP of Specialty Lending at FinWise Bank praised Behalf’s “talented people, technology, and acquisition channel” which he said would “change the landscape of business lending.” A self-described, “financial tech bank with a community heart,” FinWise Bank was founded in 2000 and is headquartered in Sandy, Utah. Also known as Utah Community Bank, FinWise Bank has teamed up with fintechs in the lending space before, most recently partnering with direct loan provider, LendingPoint, in March

Founded in 2011 and headquartered in New York City, Behalf demonstrated its vendor platform at FinovateFall 2014. A member of CB Insights’ Fintech 250, Behalf has raised $156 million in funding, including a $27 million Series C a year ago this month. MissionOG, Spark Capital, and Viola Growth are among the company’s investors.

ACH Alert’s Fraud Prevention HQ Empowers Account Holders to Stop Suspicious Transactions

ACH Alert provides enterprise-grade, SaaS-based advanced fraud prevention solutions to financial institutions and fintechs. At FinovateSpring earlier this year, ACH Alert President David Peace and CEO Deborah Peace demonstrated Fraud Prevention HQ, which turns the challenge of fraud prevention into a revenue-making opportunity. ACH Alert’s fraud monitoring platform provides real-time, actionable, out-of-band alerts based on voice biometrics, and the rule sets are fully-customizable. The platform gives users a dashboard to view transactions flagged by the system before the transactions take place. But what is particularly Fraud Prevention HQ, as CEO Peace explained, is the way it empowers customers and clients. “This is the only platform available in the market that allows account holders to interact to stop suspicious ACH, wires, and check activity in real-time without financial institution intervention,” she said.

This is why, when it comes to cost savings of fraud prevention, Peace gives the credit to the customer. “In 2016, our system monitored $80 billion worth of transactions for the 70 financial institutions that we work with today,” she said. “And the account holders, not the financial institutions, were able to return $625 million.”

Pictured (left to right): ACH Alert’s David Peace (President) and Deborah Peace (CEO) demonstrating Fraud Prevention HQ at FinovateSpring 2017.

For the company’s live demo, the Peaces walked the audience through log-in on the client portal, which is integrated into the financial institution’s system and can be accessed online or mobile. They showed the Fraud Prevention HQ’s dashboard where basic information on wires, check, and ACH transaction activity is located, before focusing on the latter to show, for example, how easily a customer can respond to an alert by managing an individual ACH transaction entry. The ability to do this quickly and accurately is important for corporate clients, the team emphasized, because – unlike consumers – companies only have one day to detect and return a suspicious transaction. “We had one customer of a financial institution that returned a single item for $77 million one day,” Peace said. “So that saved them a significant amount of money.”

Fraud Prevention HQ: Dashboard View.

Features of Fraud Prevention HQ include debit blocks and filters for retail customers as well as corporate clients, electronic dispute forms that can be digitally signed, and automated exception settlement handling. Importantly, Fraud Prevention HQ’s dispute resolution process sends alerts before money actually changes hands. This way, in the event of a return, the customer doesn’t have to wait several days for the funds to come back to the account. The goal, as she explained, was to take financial institutions out of the backroom fraud monitoring and instead put those responsibilities “in the hands of paying customers.”

Company facts

  • Founded in 2008
  • Headquartered in Ooltewah, Tennessee
  • Won Innovative Solutions Award for Authentication/Fraud/Cybersecurity from BankNews

We spoke with Debbie Peace during the networking session at FinovateSpring 2017 in San Jose, and followed up with a few questions by email. Below are her responses.

Finovate: What problem does your technology solve?

Debbie Peace: It prevents unauthorized checks, ACH, and wire transfers from withdrawing funds from an account holder’s account. It moves costly fraud monitoring out of the backroom of financial institutions and into the hands of paying customers. It completely automates the return and dispute resolution process for the account holder and financial institution.

Finovate: Who are your primary customers?

Peace: Banks and credit unions of all sizes across the U.S.

Fraud Prevention HQ’s Transaction History Current Status screen enables users to see and manage account activity.

Finovate: How does your solution solve the problem better?

Peace: It automates the verification process by alerting the account holder and giving them the ability to accept or reject suspect transactions.  Most financial institutions are monitoring for suspicious activity but when a suspect transaction is identified, they have to make a judgement call, process it or call the account holder. That slows down transaction processing time, it’s costly and it is not a good customer experience. Our solution allows a financial institution and account holder to agree upon customized rules related to their account, relevant, actionable alerts are sent to the account so fraud is stopped by the account holder, before funds are withdrawn from their account – without financial institution intervention.

Finovate: What in your background gave you the confidence to tackle this challenge?

Peace: My background consists of business management, credit underwriting and risk monitoring, software development for payment systems, and extensive sales and marketing experience.    

Adding companies to the Approved List from Fraud Prevention HQ’s Transaction History page.

Finovate: What are some upcoming initiatives from your company that we can look forward to over the next few months?

Peace: We will be rolling out a cross channel payment services application, underwriting and monitoring system called S.C.O.R.E.  

Finovate:  Where do you see your company a year or two from now?

Peace: I see our customer engagement, fraud prevention solutions being the standard for fraud prevention for financial institutions and their clients, widening our base of financial institution clients nationwide.

 ACH Alert’s Deborah Peace (CEO) and David Peace (President) demonstrating Fraud Prevention HQ at FinovateSpring 2017.

Finovate Alumni News

On Finovate.com

  • Behalf Teams Up with FinWise Bank to Boost Small Business Lending Options
  • Samsung to Power Biometric Authentication Pilot for Bank of America
  • ACH Alert’s Fraud Prevention HQ Empowers Account Holders to Stop Suspicious Transactions

Around the web

  • PayPal unveils two new innovation labs in India.
  • Albany, New York-based SEFCU chooses Fiserv as technology partner.
  • FICO selects Amazon Web Services as its cloud provider.
  • SF Chronicle profiles mortgagetech innovator, Unison, in feature on downpayment assistance for Bay Area homebuyers. Join them next month in New York for FinovateFall.
  • GoBankingRates highlights AutoGravity, M1 Finance, Venmo, Mint in list of best personal finance apps
  • ID.me hires Julie Filion as Chief Marketing Officer.
  • eMoney Advisor moving into Rhode Island offices, expects to hire 100 by 2020.
  • Flywire Offers Summertime Deal for International Tuition Payments with Mastercard.
  • StreetShares adds Heather Tuason as new Chief Product Officer.

This post will be updated throughout the day as news and developments emerge. You can also follow all the alumni news headlines on the Finovate Twitter account.