Welcome to Day One of FinovateAsia!

FinovateAsia is back in Hong Kong for two days of live demonstrations and deep-dive keynotes and panel discussions on the themes that are driving innovation in fintech today. Whether you are interested in mobile banking or P2P lending, wealth management or banking for the unbanked, artificial intelligence or the blockchain, FinovateAsia is a great opportunity to see how the region’s most innovative and insightful companies are leveraging technology to help businesses and consumers better manage their financial lives.

With 17 demos, four panel discussions, a pair of keynote addresses, and a 90-minute end-of-day networking session, our schedule for Day One of FinovateAsia promises to be a great start to our annual, late autumn event. Whether you are here with us in person in Hong Kong, or catching up with all the action via Twitter @Finovate, we think you’re going to like what you see and here from our FinovateAsia 2017 innovators.

Here is the agenda for today.

Registration begins at 08:00

08:00 – 09:00: Registration & Breakfast

09:00 – 09:20: Welcome Remarks

09:20 – 09:50: Keynote: P2P Lending in China

09:50 – 10:10: Panel Discussion: The Future of Peer Lending

10:10 – 10:40: Networking Break with Refreshments

10:40 – 12:00 Demo Session #1

12:00 – 13:00: Lunch and Networking

13:00 – 13:20: Keynote: A Glimpse into Hong Kong’s Fintech Scene

13:30 – 14:50: Demo Session #2

14:50 – 15:20: Networking with Refreshments

15:20 – 15:50: Panel Discussion: Mobile Banking is Booming

15:50 – 16:10: Panel Discussion: Revolutionizing the Insurance Industry

16:10 – 16:30: Panel Discussion: Transforming Investment and Wealth Management

16:30 – 18:00: Reception and Networking
Best of Show winners will be announced tomorrow

All demo videos will be available for free in a few weeks in our video archives.

Finovate Alumni News

Around the web

  • Leondrino Exchange launches its own digital currency, XLEO.
  • BBVA forges global strategic agreement with Telefónica.
  • Revolut announces plans to build its own in-house processor.
  • Cybersecurity specialist DefenseStorm hires Terrie O’Hanlon as Chief Marketing Officer.
  • Expensify and Wells Fargo ink data exchange agreement.

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.

See Tomorrow’s Fintech Today at FinovateAsia 2017

FinovateAsia 2017 is almost here! And we can’t wait to show you the new features we’ve added to this year’s event.

In addition to our signature, 7-minute live technology demonstrations on Tuesday and Wednesday, FinovateAsia will also include keynote addresses and panel discussions. Topics covered range broadly from P2P lending and payments, mobile banking, wealth management, and the rise of artificial intelligence. We will also take a look at some of the leading fintech accelerators and incubators in Asia in a special showcase on Wednesday.

So if that sounds like a great opportunity to learn more about fintech in the Far East, here are a few last minute details to ensure you are able to make the most of your time at FinovateAsia this year.

First, know that FinovateAsia 2017 is a two-day fintech conference featuring some of the most innovative companies and technologies developing and marketing solutions for the Asia-Pacific market. With more than 450 attendees and more than 30 presenting companies, each day will feature a combination of both live fintech demonstrations as well as keynotes and panel discussions. Our single track format means you will be able to see every minute of every presentation. Check out our agenda for more information on what’s coming.

Second, this year FinovateAsia will be held at the JW Marriott, Pacific Place, 88 Queensway, Hong Kong. Easily accessible via public transportation, including rail, the JW Marriott is a world-class venue located in the heart of Hong Kong.

The conference takes place on Tuesday, November 7 and continues through Wednesday, November 8. Registration begins at 8:00 on Tuesday, and the program begins at 9:00 with Welcome Remarks. There are two live demo sessions on Day One – the first beginning at 10:40 and the second at 13:30 – two keynote addresses and four panel discussions.

On Wednesday, Day Two, registration begins at 8:00, with Welcome Remarks at 8:45. The accelerator showcase starts the program at 9:10, followed by our first keynote of the day. The first live demo session on Wednesday begins at 11:10 and the second at 13:30. Day Two will feature a total of three panel discussions. See our agenda for more details.

Last but not least, be sure to join our FinovateAsia community on our event app. Search for “Finovate” at your preferred app store, download the app, and use the same email address you used to register for the conference to login. The FinovateAsia app provides access to the agenda, more information about our demoing companies, as well as our speakers, sponsors, and partners. You can also use the app to reach out to your fellow attendees, make connections, and schedule meetings. If you have any trouble with the app, please email us at asia@finovate.com or ask one of our Finovate staffers at the registration desk at the venue.

Remember FinovateAsia tickets are still available. If you’re interested in learning how innovative fintech companies are leveraging exciting technologies like artificial intelligence, the blockchain, machine learning and more, then FinovateAsia is the place to be this week. So be sure to pick up your ticket and save your spot. We’re looking forward to seeing you here in Hong Kong!


FinovateAsia 2017 is sponsored by: Invest Hong KongCeleritiFintechLleida.net, and Barlings Capital.

FinovateAsia 2017 is partners with: 500 StartupsAgorizeAite GroupAsia Cloud Computing AssociationBankersHubBayPayBanking TechnologyBeFast.TVBigData-MadeSimple.comBlockExplorerBreaking BanksByte AcademyCB InsightsCelentConventus LawEbankingNewsFemTechFinancial ITFINOLABFintech Association of Hong KongFintech FinanceFintech News Hong KongFinTechTimeForresterHeadcountHolland FintechHong Kong Economic TimesThe Hong Kong Foreign Financial Institutions AssociationIBS IntelligenceInnovate FinanceInsight AlphaLexisNexis Risk SolutionsMercator Advisory GroupNexChangeThe Nilson ReportOvumThe PaypersPlug and PlayPR NewswireRegulation AsiaRFi GroupSingapore FinTech AssociationSME Finance ForumSwiss Finance + Technology AssociationWHub, and World Fintech Association.

Symbiont Wins Distributed Ledger Technology Award for Second Year in a Row

When it comes to award-winning, buy-side, distributed ledger technologies, the smart contract solutions from Symbiont are apparently pretty hard to beat.

For the second consecutive year, the New York-based company has won the Buy-Side Technology Award for Best Distributed Ledger Technology Project by Waters Technology. In accepting the award, Symbiont CEO and co-founder Mark Smith emphasized the technology’s applicability to the buy-side, calling it a “founding principle” to help “upgrade settlement processes in capital markets via blockchain and smart contracts.” Smith highlighted the decentralized nature of Symbiont’s platform, with each network node being equal, as another advantage. “Because there are no gatekeepers in Symbiont networks,” Smith said, “the balance of power is fair to everyone and we appreciate the buy-side recognizing the value of this.”

Adam Krellenstein, Symbiont CTO and co-founder, during his presentation, “Distributed Ledgers and Smart Contracts” at FinDEVr New York 2016.

Symbiont Chairman and President Caitlin Long was even more specific, adding that the “long-only buy-side” is likely to be the biggest beneficiary of blockchain technology. This is because many of the costs increasingly borne by the buy-side – latency, capital requirements, counterparty risk – can be reduced with blockchain-based solutions, Long explained.

Founded in 2015, Symbiont has supported a number of major blockchain projects including its joint venture with Ipreo – a 19-party pilot for syndicated loans – and its work with the Delaware Blockchain Initiative. Last month, the company joined the Wall Street Blockchain Alliance as a corporate member, and this summer, Symbiont announced a strategic investment from Medici Ventures. A partnership with Privatemarket.io to build an alternative investment marketplace for closed-end funds announced in June and an investment from China’s Hundsun Technologies in May further characterize a busy year for Symbiont.

Company CTO and co-founder Adam Krellenstein presented “Distributed Ledgers and Smart Contracts” at FinDEVr New York 2016 where he explained the differences between Symbiont’s Smart Securities system and traditional distributed databases.

Finovate Alumni News

On Finovate.com

  • Symbiont Wins Distributed Ledger Technology Award for a Second Year in a Row.

Around the web

  • FinTech Insider News interviews Revolut founder and CEO Nikolay Storonsky.
  • Diebold Nixdorf SVP of Software Alan Kerr talks omnichannel ecommerce with PYMNTS.com.
  • Betterment’s Nick Holeman discusses spotting bull markets on CNBC.
  • CardFlight to power mobile POS offering from Beyond.
  • Quotatis Pro highlights Xero in its list of top apps to help you run your business.
  • Neustar joins Visa ID Intelligence as a digital identity partner.
  • PayNearMe teams up with New York City Department of Finance to enable parking ticket fines at more than 100 area 7-Elevens.

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.

TransferWise Raises $280 Million in Series E

In a round led by Old Mutual Global Investors and venture capital firm IVP, TransferWise has raised $280 million in new funding. The new capital, which takes the London-based fintech’s total financing to more than $396 million, will be used to help the money transfer innovator grow its services and expand its global presence – particularly in Asia. The Series D also will enable TransferWise to build on its newly-launched service that helps SMEs reduce or even avoid conversion fees by letting them hold money in different currencies.

Also participating in the round were new investors Sapphire Ventures and World Innovation Lab, as well as existing investors Andreessen Horowitz, Ballie Gifford, and Richard Branson. TransferWise now has an estimated valuation of $1.6 billion.

Quoted in Reuters, TransferWise finance director Matthew Briers noted that the company was “moving significant amounts of money on a monthly basis,” but there is still room for growth. “There are still many trillions of dollars that are moving cross-border,” he said. In addition to plans to expand into the Asia-Pacific region, TransferWise added that it will launch in India “within the next year.” An API that will enable financial institutions to readily access Transferwise’s platform is also in the cards, the company said. Bloomberg’s coverage of the news also featured company chairman and former CEO Taavet Hinrikus hinting at the “very high likelihood” of TransferWise becoming a public company, though Hinrikus added it was “still quite a number of years away.”

TransferWise demonstrated its platform at FinovateEurope 2013. Founded in 2010, the company has more than two million customers and more than 750 currency routes. Last month, TransferWise unveiled new fees for GBP transfers, a month after the company was named to the European Fintech Awards & Conference’s European Fintech 100. Bringing its Borderless Accounts solution to Canada in August, TransferWise announced in July that its customers could use ApplePay to send money globally via its platform – the same month co-founder Kristo Käärmann took over as CEO of the company. With more than $1 billion in transferred funds each month, TransferWise reached profitability in May of this year.

Clinc Goes Global With Deployments in Six Countries, Signs Deal with Turkey’s Biggest Private Bank

Conversational AI innovator Clinc has partnered with Işbank, the largest private bank in Turkey, which will deploy the Finovate Best of Show winner’s technology within its two mobile banking apps. The bank’s mobile banking app will provide users with a voice-activated intelligent personal assistant, while the bank’s mobile wallet payments app will feature Clinc’s AI brain and enable in-store payments and money transfers.

The announcement makes Işbank the first global FI to offer conversational AI with multi-language support. It also means that Clinc’s natural language platform, Finie, is now deployed in six countries and in 80 different languages. The partnership with Isbank alone will put Clinc’s technology in the hands of more than 4.5 million app users.

Clinc CEO and co-founder Dr. Jason Mars demonstrating Finie, a conversational AI platform, at FinovateSpring 2016.

“In contrast to the rule-based, bot-approach taken by all other vendors in the market, the fundamentals of our deep neural-network architecture enable us to break down the barriers to global adoption of conversational A.I.,” Clinc CEO Dr. Jason Mars said. “We can deploy to a bank in Istanbul or Singapore just as quickly and easily as we can deploy to a bank in Chicago or New York.”

Leveraging advanced natural language processing, machine learning, and deep neural networks, Clinc’s conversational AI platform is able to comprehend, recall, and respond to unstructured, everyday human speech. The technology understands speech patterns, word and sentence structure, and sentiment, surpassing other solutions that merely convert speech to text and rely on a set of pre-coded responses. This is also key to the multi-language capabilities of Clinc’s technology. “We’re miles ahead because the only other way to do multi-language is to start from scratch, and to code new rules and new grammar for every new language,” Mars explained.

Clinc demonstrated its Finie conversational AI technology at FinovateFall 2016, winning Best of Show. Last month, the company announced a partnership with Tulsa, Oklahoma-based Enacomm that will make it easier for smaller banks and credit unions to adopt AI chatbot technology. In August, Clinc integrated its technology with the Alexa skill for members of USAA.

Founded in 2015 and based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Clinc has raised $7.75 million in funding and includes Drive Capital, Cahoots Holdings, Hyde Park Venture Partners, and individual investor Stuart Porter among its investors. Company co-founder and CEO Mars was named one of the Top 10 Most Innovative CEOs in Banking 2017 by Bank Innovation. Check out his thoughts on what it takes to become a successful fintech start-up in our roundtable conversation from earlier this year.

Vera for Mail Delivers Enterprise-Grade Encryption for Email

Security specialist Vera unveiled its latest solution for sharing and securing enterprise data today: Vera for Mail. Now generally available, the new technology protects confidential correspondence, classifies messages, and dynamically changes access rights in real-time. Vera for Mail enables automatic encryption of email messages and attachments, providing better control over sensitive information.

“The significant rise in data breaches from compromised email is changing how companies think about protecting their critical communications,” Vera CTO and co-founder Prakash Linga said in a statement. Warning that a lack of control over sensitive correspondence means “losing the battle” against cybercrime, Linga added “by leveraging the same encryption, classification, rights management, and tracking that powers our file security products, we can achieve what other solutions can’t: simple, data-centric security for email that just works.”

Vera CEO and co-founder Ajay Arora demonstrating the company’s data protection technology at FinovateSpring 2016.

Launched as a private beta this spring, Vera for Mail gives workers, contractors, partners, and third parties the ability to control sensitive information after it leaves the organization. The technology provides complete visibility into all email access attempts and enables the user to manage and track access and sharing. Additionally, the solution allows users to dynamically watermark emails, restrict ability to take screenshots, and limit or prevent email forwarding. Vera for Mail can also be automated to provide security, manage access, and track sharing for both internal and external email correspondence in complex enterprises.

Announcing the general availability of the technology at the Vera blog, VP of Marketing Grant Shirk underscored the importance of a security solution that does not compromise the user experience – “Truly, this is where prior attempts at making email security work in the enterprise have failed,” he noted. Instead, Vera for Mail enables “securing an email … as easy as pressing send” through a combination of dynamic data protection and “an experience purpose-built for collaboration,” Shirk wrote. Vera for Mail works with popular email clients such as Outlook and Apple Mail, and can also be deployed with browser-based email clients like Gmail.

Vera made its Finovate debut last year, demonstrating its security platform at FinovateSpring 2016. Last month, the company announced that it would provide data security services for General Electric. In May, Vera reported that it would provide support for multi-factor authentication solutions from a trio of companies including fellow Finovate alum, Twilio. Founded in 2014 and headquartered in Palo Alto, California, Vera has raised $50 million in funding, including a $15 million strategic investment earlier this year. Hasso Plattner Ventures, Sutter Hill Ventures, and Battery Ventures are among the company’s investors.

Iberiabank to Deploy Bank Operating System from nCino

nCino’s Bank Operating System just gained another partner, reports Calum Parry of Banking Technology (Finovate’s sister publication).

Iberiabank has selected nCino’s cloud-based Bank Operating System to process services across several lines of business, including commercial and SME lending and treasury management.

After an evaluation of its current technologies, the bank identified the need for a partner that would help optimize its processes to enable “efficient and profitable growth”, explained Iberiabank.

According to nCino, its Bank Operating System allows for a single, secure cloud-based platform, built on Salesforce, that combines customer relationship management (CRM), loan origination, deposit account opening, workflow, enterprise content management, business process management, digital engagement and instant reporting.

Mike Boyd, Director of Strategic Risk Initiatives at Iberiabank, said “nCino will deliver a holistic view of our client relationships from the convenience of one platform, allowing us to present more timely, personalized offerings and better meet clients’ financial needs”.

Headquartered in Lafayette, Louisiana, Iberiabank has a branch network of 228 locations in ten southeastern states of the US.

Other recent deals for nCino include ConnectOne in New Jersey, Gulf Coast Bank & Trust in Louisiana, Pacific Western Bank in California (the 100th implementation of Bank Operating System), Great Southern Bank in Missouri, Valley National Bank in New Jersey, North State Bank in North Carolina and CrossFirst Bank in Kansas. Previously, nCino gained its first client outside the U.S, U.K.-based OakNorth Bank.

nCino demonstrated its Bank Operating System at FinovateEurope 2017 in February. Founded in 2012 and headquartered in Wilmington, North Carolina, nCino has raised more than $81 million in funding. The company’s investors include Insight Venture Partners, Salesforce Ventures, and Wellington Management.

IBM Security Introduces New Solution to Help Banks Spot Fraudulent Accounts

A new feature from IBM Security will help banks spot fraudulent accounts before they are opened. The New Account Fraud Detection solution combines machine learning and analytics with device and network information gained during the new account opening process to identify fraud. Information such as IP address, geolocation and time zone, and health of the device are some of the data points that the technology can leverage to determine if there is fraudulent activity taking place.

Discussing the new offering at the Security Intelligence blog, IBM Security Director of Offering Management Jason Keenaghan noted, “You don’t even need to be a customer of the bank where a fraudulent account request occurs!” He added, “Wherever IBM Trusteer New Account Fraud is running, analysis will be performed to help banks separate the fraudulent users from the legitimate ones by looking at the positive information they provide and comparing that with the negative indicators surrounding the transaction.”

The new capability will be available as an add-on to IBM Security Trusteer Pinpoint Direct. Pinpoint Direct is used by hundreds of financial institutions and banks around the world to protect their websites against account takeover, fraudulent transactions, as well as detect the presence of high risk malware on end users’ devices.

IBM Security demonstrated its cognitive approach to fraud detection and protection, IBM Trusteer Rapport, at FinovateSpring 2017. IBM acquired Trusteer in 2013 and has since leveraged the purchase to offer a range of cognitive and cloud-based cybersecurity solutions. In July of this year, IBM Security announced it was launching testing services for the internet of things (IoT). The previous month, the company partnered with Cisco to allow security teams from both companies to exchange threat intelligence when investigating major cyber incidents. IBM Security’s VP of Threat Intelligence Caleb Barlow addressed the Wired Security 2017 conference in London last month, warning that companies remain “unprepared” for the damage a successful cyberattack can do to their businesses “causing more damage, financially and otherwise, than the breach itself.”

Categories: IBM