WealthSpark Replaces the Personal Capital 401(k)

Wealth tech company Personal Capital has launched a new 401(k) product through Alight Solutions, which will market the product to employers. WealthSpark, the new offering, is a joint effort between Personal Capital and AllianceBernstein (AB).

The new tool is a qualified default investment alternative (QDIA) in an employer-provided savings plan. A QDIA aims to encourage employees to invest assets in appropriate long-term savings vehicles.

To help users find those savings vehicles, WealthSpark leverages AB’s customized investment portfolios and combines it with Personal Capital’s digital wealth management planning tools, which curate 18 data points about a user’s financial situation and future plans. This information helps WealthSpark users understand their current finances as well as gain insight for decisions about their future, such as education, retirement, and buying a home.

Jennifer DeLong, head of defined contribution at AB, said, “The solution combines asset allocation with technology to deliver a more personal participant experience. By better understanding a participant’s individual circumstances, we can create a series of optimized glide paths to tailor outcomes to participants’ unique financial objectives.”

WealthSpark isn’t Personal Capital’s first foray into employer-sponsored plans. At FinovateFall 2012, the California-based company launched its own plan– the Personal Capital 401(k)— a professionally managed alternative to a traditional 401(k). “We scoured the landscape for better 401(k) plans,” said then-CEO Bill Harris in the demo. “Finally a light went on– let’s build a better 401(k) plan. So we did and I’m delighted to launch here at Finovate, America’s Best 401(k).”

The plan offered solo 401(k)s for sole proprietors, custom 401(k)s for large and complex businesses, 403(p) plans for non-profits, defined benefits plans for tax benefits, and cash balance plans. The plan boasted fees of one half of one percent and access to the Personal Capital dashboard.

WealthSpark, the new offering, will help Personal Capital focus on its core competencies– financial analysis and wealth management planning– by relying on partnerships. Alight Solutions will tap into its existing customer base of 1,400 business clients to market WealthSpark, and AB will use its pre-existing portfolios for the investment side.

Founded in 2009, Personal Capital most recently presented at FinovateSpring 2014 where it debuted One Click Investment Portfolios. Earlier this spring, the company began offering socially responsible tools that make it easy for investors to put money into causes that matter to them. Personal Capital has raised $240 million.

Roostify Partners with BOK Financial to Improve the Mortgage Lending Process

BOK Financial, a regional financial services company based out of Tulsa, Oklahoma, has teamed up with digital lending platform Roostify to improve the home buying process for customers and give lenders access to technology that will make it easier to process loans.

“The technology investment complements BOK Financial’s increase in purchase loan production across the company’s eight-state retail footprint as well as the consumer direct channel over the past year,” BOK Financial Mortgage President Glenn Brunker said. “The bank is leveraging Roostify’s dynamic technology to deliver a unique offering to both the employee and customer in the different markets and channels. This will affirm our commitment to the implementation of a streamlined digital experience for our customers.”

Crediting the mortgage lending industry for its willingness to “embrace new technology,” Roostify CEO and co-founder Rajesh Bhat said, “This gives BOK Financial’s loan officers the opportunity to better manage an already complicated task of juggling financial documents and progress notifications between multiple parties. Home buyers benefit from a better experience from application to closing.”

The new platform will enable customers to begin an application, add documentation, and follow their loan’s progress online. Loan applicants will be able to securely upload, send, and receive loan documents, as well as provide access to others involved in the transaction – such as their real estate agent. The solution will allow loan officers to spend less time processing paper documents and making repeated follow-ups with customers and instead give them more time “to get the loan into processing much faster and keep it moving forward more easily” in the words of  John Yancey, a loan officer familiar with Roostify’s technology who was quoted in the partnership announcement.

Headquartered in San Francisco, California and founded in 2014, Roostify demonstrated its platform at FinovateSpring 2016. The company’s digital home lending platform helps banks, independent brokerages, and lenders close loans faster, reduce paperwork, and provide a superior, friction-free mortgage experience. Last month Roostify was honored at the MBA Insights 2018 Tech All-Star Awards for its achievements in mortgagetech. In March, the company added Mark McLaughlin as Senior Vice President for Business Development and in February, the company picked up an investment of $25 million, taking its total capital to $33 million. Roostify began the year announcing an integration with online lending marketplace and fellow Finovate alum, LendingTree.

Finovate Alumni News

On Finovate.com

  • Roostify Partners with BOK Financial to Improve the Mortgage Lending Process.
  • WealthSpark Replaces the Personal Capital 401(k).

Around the web

  • NopSec named most innovative tech company of the year by 2018 American Business Awards.
  • Bill.com appoints Yael Zheng as Chief Marketing Officer.
  • Myawaddy Bank in Myanmar selects Infosys Finacle to power its digital transformation.

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.

Trusted Key Raises $3 Million for Passwordless Authentication

Blockchain-based identity solutions company Trusted Key pulled in $3 million this week. The seed funding was led by Founders Co-Op with participation from Pithia, the venture capital company of The RChain Cooperative. Combined with the company’s $1.1 million debt round last April, Trusted Key’s total funding stands at $4.1 million.

Trusted Key will use the investment to accelerate innovation and business expansion to meet demand from enterprise customers. “Highly regulated enterprises want to bring their customer experience online but have significant drop-off rates during enrollment due to the cumbersome identity validation, or proofing, process,” said Amit Jasuja, CEO of Trusted Key. “Trusted Key’s platform protects the privacy of consumer data, while allowing enterprises to easily verify that their customers are who they claim to be. We are rebuilding digital trust.”

Today’s funding comes as the company wraps up a successful pilot project with healthcare consortium NH-ISAC in which Trusted Key facilitates identity proofing during the onboarding process. The company provides NH-ISAC clients with a single, reusable identity they can use to access all of their healthcare services. “We have been very impressed working with Trusted Key on the power of their platform around identity proofing and the creation of a secure digital identity that can be re-used by all of our healthcare partners with validation on the blockchain,” said Kurt Lieber, Chairman of the NH-ISAC Identity and Authentication Working Group.

Trusted Key’s solution leverages the blockchain to create a digital identity to prevent identity fraud and improve security. In the end, consumers receive a password-less login and enterprise businesses receive streamlined customer acquisition with a customizable authentication experience.

Its use of the blockchain makes Trusted Key well-positioned to scale up. And there is plenty of room to grow in this market– a recent report from Allied Market Research states that the global consumer identity and access management market is estimated to reach nearly $24 billion by 2022.

Founded in 2016, Trusted Key most recently presented at FinovateFall 2017. In November of that year, the Seattle-based company launched Secure SSH Key Management as part of its Trusted Key Digital Identity Wallet.

Update: Student Loan Genius Raises New Funding in Round Led by Vestigo Ventures

Update: 5/17: Student Loan Genius announced today that it has raised $3.5 million in seed funding. The round was led by Vestigo Ventures and featured participation from CMFG Ventures, Prudential Financial, and Rubicon Venture Capital.

“This new funding validates Student Loan Genius’ mission and efforts to enable companies to retain their top talent in an increasingly competitive workforce through unique benefits, like student loan payments, that meet their employee’s needs,” Student Loan Genius CEO Matt Beecher said. The company plans to use the investment to support commercialization of their offering and add technology, sales, and marketing talent to their team.

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Xconomy is reporting that Austin, Texas-based Student Loan Genius has raised $4.7 million in funding. The news was seconded by Austin Business Journal, which added that 11 investors have participated in the round. Both reports – as well as a third from AmericanInno, are based at least in part on a SEC Form D filing, which suggests that the $4.7 million was part of a larger $5.8 million fundraising initiative. As reported, the new capital more than doubles Student Loan Genius’ total equity funding to more than $7 million.

Student Loan Genius helps young workers retire their student debts faster through a combination of education, debt, analysis, and the assistance of employers. The company helps students search for and identify student loan repayment programs that work best for them (i.e., programs that offer better terms based on higher credit scores, programs that offer discounts for military veterans). Student Loan Genius also enables student loan borrowers to see the difference among repayment options.

The company’s signature feature, demonstrated at FinovateSpring 2016, is Genius Save, which enables employers to attach a student loan benefit to their 401(k) contribution. The goal is to relieve the strain of student loan repayments on the budgets of young workers who are just beginning to save for retirement.

“Like the 401(k), a student loan benefit invests back into employees,” Student Loan Genius’ Content Manager Bobby Hilliard wrote on the company’s blog last month. “While benefits like pet insurance or chef-catered lunches are appealing, a student loan repayment benefit impacts lives immediately. Plus, it’s a great tool for retention.” Hilliard noted that employers offering a student loan contribution to their workers of “even $50 a month” can make a significant impact on their employees’ ability to retire their student debt quicker and begin saving for a home and investing for retirement that much sooner.

Founded in 2013, the company partnered with New York Life last fall, helping the firm launch its student loan repayment program. Last summer, Student Loan Genius joined the inaugural U.S. cohort of BBVA’s program for social entrepreneurs. Prudential Financial, John Hancock, Socratic Ventures, Village Capital, Kapor Capital, and Capital Factory are among the company’s investors.  Twenty-five year fintech and venture capital veteran Matt Beecher was appointed CEO of the company in August 2017.

Finovate Alumni News

On Finovate.com

  • Trusted Key Raises $3 Million for Passwordless Authentication.
  • Student Loan Genius Picks Up $4.7 Million in New Funding.

Around the web

  • Argentine prepaid services provider Nubi partners with Mambu.
  • Mitek to provide KYC for cryptocurrency broker BTCDirect.
  • Flywire and Billtrust collaborate to improve cross border accounts receivable for Billtrust customers.
  • BioCatch offers its behavioral biometrics solution as an integrated module to the ForgeRock platform.
  • Personal Capital partners with benefits firm Alight Solutions and asset manager AllianceBernstein.
  • OurCrowd is set to hit $1 billion in crowdfunded assets in 2018.

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.

BlueVine Receives $200 Million Line of Credit from Credit Suisse

Alternative lending platform BlueVine fortified its backing today with a $200 million line of credit from Credit Suisse. This boosts the company’s total combined debt and equity funding to $518 million.

Today’s round is an asset-backed revolving credit facility that will allow BlueVine to offer higher lines of credit to more small businesses at a larger scale. In fact, the California-based company has increased its business line of credit from $200,000 to $250,000. This comes after BlueVine doubled its invoice factoring credit limit to $5 million earlier this year.

BlueVine CFO Ana Sirbu said that this type of debt funding is critical for the company to increase its scale. “This financing will support our next phase of growth,” she said. “We continue to build a business for the long-term by offering the best working capital financing solutions to business owners.

Founded in 2013, BlueVine is best known for Invoice Factoring, in which it issues cash to small businesses who sell their unpaid invoices at a discount, then receive up to $5 million in working capital in a matter of days to help manage operations. The company expects its total funded volume to exceed $1 billion this year.

BlueVine demoed its small business working capital solution at FinovateFall 2014. Earlier this spring, the company partnered with cross-border payments company Veem to save businesses on international payments. BlueVine’s other investors include Lightspeed Venture Partners, 83NORTH, Correlation Ventures, Citi Ventures, Menlo Ventures, and Rakuten Fintech Fund. Eyal Lifshitz is CEO.

Getting a Visual of Trends at FinovateSpring Next Week

We’ll be mid-way through FinovateSpring in less than a week, and many of the trends predicted at the beginning of the year are out in force.

On May 8 and 9, dozens of companies will take the stage to demo their newest technologies. And on May 10 and 11, the conversation continues. We’ll host experts on stage as they decode and decipher tomorrow’s trends and help you not only figure out what they mean for your organization but also offer up implementation ideas. Register today to save your seat!

So what’s at the top of the trends list for this year’s event?

APIs

Europe isn’t the only country with its eye on open banking. Because of the efficiencies they stand to gain, banks across the globe are considering how they can get ahead by creating a more open ecosystem. Additionally, many banks are finding value in buying and integrating white-label technology over building new technology in-house, which is creating a larger market for open APIs and SDKs across fintech.

AI and machine learning

While they’re not the same, these two enabling technologies go hand-in-hand. And it’s no wonder they came out on the top of the trends list at FinovateSpring– AI and machine learning have empowered banks to create technologies that help with everything from automating investing, enhancing marketing efforts, and improving customer service.

Lending

This is always a space worth paying attention to, because there is a lot of money to be made for both banks and fintechs if they do it right, and there’s a lot of money to be lost if they do it wrong. Additionally, with the increasing prevalence of enabling technologies such as the blockchain, AI, and cognitive computing, lenders are discovering improved underwriting, loan issuance, and debt recovery options.


What are you hoping to discover at FinovateSpring next week? Check out our agenda to learn more of what’s in store. Have questions? Visit our contact page to get in touch and we’ll help you out.

New Investment Helps Power Canadian Expansion for Financial Data Platform Quovo

Quovo will enter the Canadian market thanks in part to an investment from Portag3 Ventures. The new investment takes the data platform provider’s total funding to $20 million.

Quovo CEO and co-founder Lowell Putnam said Canada was a source of “immense growth potential” for the company given the country’s “thriving fintech ecosystem and financial institutions hungry to adopt innovative technologies.” Putnam also highlighted a strategic element in Quovo’s relationship with Portag3 Ventures. “The decision to raise funding from Portag3 was about much more than capital,” he said. “Portag3 is well connected in the Canadian financial services industry and is helping us to hit the ground running as we work to establish ourselves in the market.”

Portag3 Ventures is a Canadian-based venture capital firm sponsored by Power Financial Corporation, IGM Financial Inc., and Great West-Lifeco Inc.

As part of the expansion, Quovo announced plans to partner with Canadian fintechs and incumbent financial services companies. The company’s Director of Quovo in Canada, Brad Joudrie, pointed out that the company had already added to its Canadian institutional coverage, and included Canadian financial account types into its data model. “We’re fully committed to building a sustainable business to support the country’s growing financial services sector,” Joudrie said. “The investment from Portag3 will enable us to build out a regional team, deliver on Canadian consumer requirements, and fuel innovation in Canadian financial services.”

The investment and expansion news comes on the heels of Quovo’s launch of two new data solutions to streamline ACH transactions and payment management. ACH Verification uses instant account verification or Quovo’s Autoverified Microdeposits to authenticate key account and account owner details and ensure frictionless ACH transactions. Payment Management enables monitoring of customer accounts to accurately determine the best time to debit accounts for steady payment flow and lower NSF fees.

“Our movement into payments demonstrates the utility of Quovo’s technology across a breadth of industries, and we’re excited to deliver solutions to some of the major obstacles faced by payment originators,” Putnam said. Both solutions were developed using Quovo’s Income + Expense and Balance Estimator products, introduced last month.

Quovo’s technology offers companies connectivity and insights for millions of consumer financial accounts across more than 14,000 different institutions. Founded in 2010 and headquartered in New York City, Quovo partnered with SoFi to present How Quovo & SoFi Perfected Bank Authentication at our developers conference, FinDEVr New York 2017. The previous year, the company teamed up with Betterment at FinDEVr New York 2016 to demonstrate the integration of Quovo’s account aggregation services with Betterment’s investment platform.

Last month, Quovo introduced a pair of solutions geared to enhancing critical processes in the lending value chain for loan originators and servicers. Back in December, the company launched Quovo PFM, a suite of embeddable personal finance management modules for FIs that complements the fintech’s account aggregation offering.

Finovate Alumni News

On Finovate.com

  • New Investment Helps Power Canadian Expansion for Financial Data Platform Quovo.

Around the web

  • HTC Global Services joins Quadient Partner Advantage Program.
  • Token Granted FCA Authorisation For Open Banking Payment & Information Services.
  • Erste Bank Hungary Readies for Immediate Payments and Open Banking Era with ACI Worldwide.
  • NICE’s Cognitive Robotic Automation Platform allows Amazon Lex’s conversational chatbot to fulfill more customer requests in real-time.
  • Salt Edge supports Account Information Services flows authorized under PSD2 Third Party Providers.
  • Sensibill powers receipt management for Quontic Bank.
  • Digital Onboarding to enhance Belmont Savings Bank’s customer engagement by increasing new checking account activation rates.

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.