Finovate Alumni News

On Finovate.com

  • Top Trends in Wealth Tech: From API-ization to Virtual Engagement

Around the web

  • Full Profile’s AgriDigital successfully executes its first settlement of an agricultural commodity on a blockchain, enabling real-time payment on title transfer for Aussie grain growers.
  • Strands to power PFM for Davivienda, a major Colombian bank.
  • OnDeck announces new $200 million revolving credit facility with Credit Suisse.
  • Georgia Heritage FCU and Wepawaug-Flagg FCU select Bankjoy to power their digital banking platforms.

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

Fintech Trending: Australia and the Road to Fintech in Asia

australia_newzealand_flagsFinovateAsia 2016 is right around the corner. Be sure to visit our registration page and pick up your tickets today. We look forward to seeing you next week, 8 November, as Finovate returns to Asia.

When we talk about financial technology in Asia, we typically turn to places like Singapore, widely regarded to be the fintech “hub” of the region, or to Japan, with its advanced consumer economy (and increased participation in fintech events in the West, like Finovate and FinDEVr, or to China which was recognized by H2 Ventures and KPMG in their 2016 Fintech 100 report as follows:

China now tops the global ranks—swithin three years, China’s fintech ventures have gone from only one company included in the top Established 50 rankings in 2014, to this year China featuring four of the top five companies and eight of the top 50.

This includes Ant Financial, formerly known as Alipay, which as the world’s largest third-party payment platform, is the #1 company in the report, as well as Qudian, a Beijing-based student micro lender, ranked #2.

But there’s a reason why analysts refer to the area as the Asia-Pacific region, and part of that reason is the presence of countries like Australia and New Zealand which, while very much a part of the Asian financial ecosystem, are often overlooked in discussions about the growth of fintech in the area.

Turning back to the H2 Ventures/KPMG report, we see that of the top 100 companies highlighted, while 14 are from Asia, 1o are from Australia and New Zealand. This compares well with the U.K., a long-standing global fintech center, that landed 12 companies in the top 100. These companies include:

  • #14 Xero (F11; FD14) – New Zealand
  • #31 Prospa – Australia
  • #43 Tyro – Australia
  • #50 SocietyOne (F12) – Australia

As well as emerging stars:

  • AfterPay – Australia
  • Bright – Australia
  • Data Republic – Australia
  • HashChing – Australia
  • Identitii (F16) – Australia
  • springy – Australia

Australian and New Zealand fintech companies are clearly punching above their weight. As one illustration noted by Let’s Talk Payments, in December 2015, 5% of Australian fintech startups raised capital. Yet that 5% represented 14% of all capital raised by fintechs in December. Compare this to the United Kingdom where 15% of fintechs received investment dollars in December 2015, yet the amount raised was 11% of the total for that month. It is no surprise that China stands out as the true overachiever, with only 2% of Chinese companies raising capital in last December, but those companies represented 17% of all financing raised.

The takeaway here is more than a call for FinovateDownUnder—although that’s an intriguing idea. It suggests that more attention paid to Australia—as both a developing fintech nation in its own right, as well as a way for Western companies, technical talent, and capital to begin making its way eastward—could be well-rewarded.

See also:

  • 9 Australian companies have made it to the latest global Fintech 100 – Business Insider Australia
  • Australian FinTech Firms Recognized as World Leaders in FinTech – Cryptocoins News
  • Australian fintech founders recognized as world leaders next to tech giants Stripe, Xero and Square – Startup Smart
  • CBA takes pop-up innovation lab on a tour of Australia – Finextra

Our friends from Down Under

This discussion of Australia and New Zealand merits a reminder of how many innovators from Down Under are alums of our Finovate and FinDEVr conferences. In addition to those mentioned above, here’s a quick look at some of our more recent Australian and New Zealander alums:

Fintech Trending: Bots Break Out, AI Gets Personal, and Blockchain Buys the Farm

finovatefall2016_stage_crowdshot

Is it fair to judge a fintech conference based on the way it reflects, anticipates, and even uncovers what’s most important in the field? We think so, and were once again impressed by the way FinovateFall this month helped spread the story of fintech in the second half of 2016.

After all, we read about new technologies every day. But once the wow factor subsides, the question remains: Does it really work? Is anybody, any bank, any business in the real world actually putting this great looking, great sounding technology—these bots, this blockchain—to the test?

The good news is that the good news is true: new technologies like chatbots not only work, but were demonstrated live on stage by companies like Personetics (F16); Fiserv (F16); Kore (F16); and FinovateFall 2o16 Best of Show winner, Backbase (F16). We can even include companies like Clinc (F16) in this category of innovations that make it easier for people to communicate with technology. Clinc, which also won Best of Show honors at FinovateFall, developed and demonstrated an artificial intelligence-based natural language, using an intelligent assistant that earned rave reviews from both attendees and the media.

  • “Backbase promises 60-second customer on-boarding with new solution”—Banking Technology
  • “Bots Are Everywhere, But Are They Ready for Banking?”—Bank Innovation

What about the blockchain, you ask? Earlier this year at FinovateSpring, our attendees awarded a Best of Show trophy to BanQu (F16), a company that uses blockchain technology to help refugee and displaced persons re-establish community ties through identification and financial inclusion. This month at FinovateFall, we met Full Profile (F16), an Australian company leveraging the blockchain to support real-time settlement, financing, and provenance-tracking of agricultural commodities.

  • “Blockchain technology extends to agricultural contracts”—The Australian

But FinovateFall was about more than the most headline-grabbing technologies. As our Best of Show voting revealed, the appeal of technology to solve more everyday problems—be it buying a car or a gift card—remains strong as well.

“You’ve Got A Car!” and a Digital Revolution in Regifting

This certainly seems to be what Finovate attendees had in mind when it came to Finovate newcomer and Best of Show winner AutoGravity (F16). Founded last fall, the Irvine, California-based startup leverages the smartphone to make every aspect of the car-buying experience easier, from initial selection of a vehicle all the way through the financing process. As with a growing number of fintech solutions, AutoGravity combines several innovations we’ve seen individually in fintech demonstrations over the years—document scanning; the integration of social media with credit application; geolocation—to produce a solution that seeks to disrupt traditional auto financing as we know it.

Swych (F16), the mobile gifting platform that also won Best of Show, is another example of technology making magic out of the otherwise mundane. The company facilitates the purchase, sending, redemption, and exchange of gift cards using digital technology that puts the smartphone at the center of the process. Based out of Plano, Texas, Swych’s technology brings the gift card industry into the 21st century, potentially helping breathe new life into what is typically thought of as the “gift of last resort.”

  • “Mobile tech for automobile lending, gift card redeeming snag top prize at Finovate”—Bizjournals
  • Brief: FinovateFall 2016 Best of Show—CrowdfundInsider

Security: short and sweet

It is no exaggeration to say that Trusona (F16), a two-year-old security specialist out of Scottsdale, Arizona, provided one of the most well-received demos of the year. And a large part of what made it so successful (and such a must-watch) was the way the demo itself embodied the dream of a simple security solution that works the same way every single time.

By quickly and effortlessly authenticating and logging in repeatedly in the course of six minutes, Trusona CEO and founder Ori Eisen did what every person who has ever wracked their brain for their most recent password, or struggled to enter a captcha code on a mobile phone, wants out of a security solution: Make it fast, make it easy, make it work the same way every single time. With plenty of competition in the security space from innovators on stage and off, it is no surprise that Trusona, with its #nopassword campaign and did-I-mention-it’s-free offering, stood out from the pack.

  • “Trusona Wins ‘Best of Show’ at FinovateFall 2016—MarketWired

Everybody loves a (six-time) winner

No discussion of FinovateFall would be complete without a tip o’ the hat to MX (F16). The company took home its sixth Best of Show trophy, impressing audiences with its PowerSwitch technology that allows an FI to quickly establish a new card of reference for consumers across a variety of platforms such as Netflix, Uber, Hulu, and Amazon.com. This gives financial institutions a powerful tool in attracting new customers and in providing new options to existing customers. It also gives FIs potential access to what MX CEO Ryan Caldwell called “a mountain of interchange”—more than $200 billion in 2015 according to MX—that banks and credit unions can’t afford to miss.

  • “MX Achieves Innovation Milestone, Becomes First Company to Win Finovate Best of Show Six Times”—MX Blog

For more coverage on FinovateFall, check out our press roundup and our FinovateFall on Twitter post.

In other news

A hybrid debit/credit card

San Francisco-based startup Zero raised $2.5 million this week. While the investment sum is not particularly notable, what the company is doing certainly is.

Zero offers a Visa credit card that works in conjunction with a mobile app, but it’s not just another alt/neo/challenger bank. The differentiating factor is that Zero deducts money from the user’s account in real time just like a debit card, so there is no monthly bill. Unlike a debit card, however, transactions process on credit card rails so cardholders receive from 1% to 3% cash-back on purchases. It also touts no fees and pays higher interest on deposits (though they don’t yet specify how much) than traditional savings accounts.

The credit card is made out of solid metal and the app offers great looking PFM tools that forecast users’ balances into the future. Clearly, the startup has millennial users in its sights and claims to have the potential to increase a credit score, since there’s no way to default on payments.

The company makes money on merchant processing instead of charging fees to users. It also saves money on advertising by using a pyramid-scheme referral approach (which worked on me as I shamelessly promoted them on Facebook yesterday).

With recent talk of credit cards falling out of favor with millennials because of their hesitancy toward debt, Zero offers an option that provides the best of both worlds—the cash-back and credit-building opportunities that come with credit cards, and the real-time transactional capability of debit cards.

Another just-launched startup doing something similar is New York-based Debitize. However, Debitize does not issue a new credit card but instead aggregates customers’ existing credit-card transactions and initiates a real-time transfer from their checking account to cover the charges. Keep an eye on this space; we think we’ll see FIs picking up on this idea in the next couple of years (presuming regulators allow the practice).

New ACH regulation

The first phase of same-day ACH-transfer regulation lands today. And while the final phase will not hit until March 2018, all bank and credit union accounts must now accept same-day transfers.

To help banks move forward with the new rule, Dwolla (F11) launched a white-label API for same-day ACH. The API, which is in a pilot program, currently supports credits only. Dwolla will roll it out with more partners in Q4 of this year.

The Clearing House, the organization behind the ACH modernization, has partnered with IBM’s (F16) Power8 to serve as the hosting program for same-day ACH. U.K.-based Vocalink (purchased by Mastercard in July 2016) is set to deliver the platform, which will roll out to banks in the U.S. within the next year.

FinovateFall Sneak Peek: Full Profile

Screen Shot 2016-08-08 at 1.05.06 PM

FF2016-Logo-wdate-largeA look at the companies demoing live to 1,500+ fintech professionals on 8/9 September 2016. Register today.

Full Profile brings transparency, efficiency, and trust to farmers and the post-farmgate ecosystem through our AgriDigital agri-blockchains and commodity-management software.

Features:

  • Help growers get paid immediately and save buyers and brokers time and money
  • De-risk financing for banks
  • Enable paddock-to-plate transparency for consumers

Why it’s great
This harvest, we are launching the first ever global pilot application of blockchain in physical agri-commodities.

Screen Shot 2016-08-08 at 1.07.11 PMPresenter

Emma Weston, Founder
Weston has extensive career experience as a lawyer, agribusiness executive, start-up mentor, and executive coach. She brings a wealth of strategic and operational expertise to the team at Full Profile.
LinkedIn

Finovate Alumni News

On Finovate.com

  • Holvi and SumUp Join Forces to Serve SMEs and the Self-Employed
  • CUneXus Closes $5 million Series A

Around the web

  • Cybersecurity innovator DefenseStorm adds Libertyville Savings Bank and PrimeRevenue as clients.
  • Prasac, the largest microfinance institution in Cambodia, launches mobile banking services courtesy of TranzWare from Compass Plus.
  • Cachet Financial Services partners with the Central Bank of Kansas City to roll out a reloadable prepaid card program.
  • OutsideIQ Brings Due Diligence Platform DDIQ to New International Markets
  • TSYS EVP and CIO Patricia Watson writes about the importance of strong enterprise architecture in fintech for CIO Review.

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.

Ready for a Sneak Peek? How to Best Prepare for FinovateFall

StageIMG

To give you a sense of the many new ideas at the upcoming FinovateFall conference in New York, we’ve launched our Sneak Peek series. Eight companies are featured each week leading up to the 8/9 September event (tickets now available).

In the meantime, here is a quick summary of the 66 announced companies (six more are in stealth mode). It’s a lot to take in; pace yourself!

  • Agreement Express offers an an end-to-end platform that helps traditional financial institutions automate labor-intensive parts of the customer onboarding process to remain compliant while quickly opening customer accounts.
  • Aleo’s marketplace uses e-procurement, e-commerce and supplier financing bundled in a single open platform to offer small and medium enterprises an online procure-to-pay solution.
  • AutoGravity’s mobile-first digital marketplace helps digitally minded customers, looking to buy and finance a vehicle, circumvent the inefficiencies of the auto-financing process by leveraging the full potential of their smartphone.
  • Avoka’s customer-acquisition platform integrates multiple fintech services to help banks, wealth managers and insurers use mobile and digital channels to onboard customers.
  • Backbase offers 60-second onboarding for financial services companies to accelerate customer acquisition with a simple, fast, and seamless omnichannel onboarding journey.
  • Bankjoy offers developers a banking API for a modern, real-time, holistic interface for credit unions and community banks.
  • Bitbond’s automated, international credit-scoring mechanism compares small business-loan applicants from different countries by using machine learning and data from the applicant’s business accounts.
  • Bluescape offers large financial services companies a highly interactive, visually collaborative platform that uses real-time, cloud-based architecture that’s ultra-scalable, all-capturing, and accessible anytime from any device.
  • BondIT offers financial advisers and portfolio managers a data-driven solution that uses machine learning advanced algorithms to manage fixed-income portfolios and solve optimization challenges.
  • brandCrowder has developed an alternative investment platform focusing on branded franchises. It leverages 45+ years of franchise-operations experience to help retail investors finance franchises, helping to bring them to market quicker.
  • Clinc’s mobile, voice-activated personal financial adviser uses artificial intelligence to help consumers get answers to financial questions and tasks.
  • Consdata offers banks and financial institutions a comprehensive platform for e-form management and customer-communication complexities.
  • Currencycloud’s dedicated API services use intelligent APIs to help businesses with the cost, limitations, and boundaries of existing payment infrastructure.
  • Daon bridges convenience and security by offering financial services companies a mobile biometric authentication platform that turns a smartphone into a mobile capture device.
  • Divy’s app and social investing community uses an approachable interface and engaging content to help first-time and emerging investors access direct marketing and financial literacy material.
  • Dynamics offers issuers and their cardholders interactive payment cards and an authorization-based, real-time loyalty processing system.
  • ebankIT’s platform offers financial institution clients an omnichannel experience.
  • Econiq’s Conversation Hub uses color-coded conversations to help bank and insurer frontline staff, and operational management and executives avoid disconnected customer conversations in branches and contact centers.
  • Envestnet | Yodlee offers millennials a solution for measuring financial health and promoting a healthy financial lifestyle.
  • Experian CrossCore is a single platform that helps manage customer identities, fraud-prevention tools, workflows and decision strategies in an easy-to-use and scalable format.
  • EyeVerify’s Eyeprint ID offers banks and other financial services companies eye biometrics via smartphone cameras for convenient, secure and private authentication.
  • Featurespace’s ARIC Engine helps financial services clients spot and prevent fraud attacks in real time using adaptive behavioral analytics.
  • Finicity offers an API for companies to build financial apps.
  • Fiserv helps financial institutions enable social finance by providing customers access to a safe, collaborative bank-secured social funding product.
  • Full Profile uses the blockchain and smart contracts for real-time settlement and reporting of physical agri-commodities to help farmers, buyers, banks and government counter party and credit-risk exposures.
  • FutureVault’s cloud-based filing cabinet helps financial service providers and their clients organize asset documents and accounts using a secure, structured and collaborative B2B2C cloud environment.
  • GainX’s SaaS platform uses decades of market research and leading-edge technology to help large financial institutions overcome innovation and adaption failures.
  • GoodData helps large banks, credit-card processing and insurance companies commercialize and monetize their data using a scalable, manageable and secure platform that is exclusively designed for data products and embedded analytics.
  • iBank Marketing offers millennials a multifunction digital wallet to help them achieve personal goals around life events by using its local eco-system that bridges consumers and small- to medium-sized enterprises.
  • identitii uses tokens and blockchain to help financial institutions with KYC, CTF and AML compliance using an information layer over legacy systems.
  • InSpirAVE’s social e-commerce platform curates advice and financial support from the user’s friends and family, financial institutions, and merchants. It helps multiply savings, for big-ticket purchases for customers who otherwise may not be able to afford them, by placing important goals for life’s special moments within reach, without the crushing burden of debt.
  • KORE’s platform transforms enterprise applications, online banking and mobile apps into personalized, conversational engagements to help financial institutions meet customer-experience expectations using the power of bots and simplicity of messaging.
  • LendingFront’s lending platform leverages a cloud-based system that furnishes small businesses with capital using their cashflow data.
  • Lidya offers African small- to medium-sized enterprises access to finance using online receivables-based lending and proprietary credit scoring.
  • Liferay’s Digital Experience offers banks a richer understanding of customers by orchestrating personalized customer experiences.
  • M1 Finance places assets held in low-yielding cash accounts into an asset-linked bank account and intuitive investment platform.
  • MapD’s Immerse helps quantitative hedge fund and asset managers query datasets with billions of rows in real-time by applying the parallel processing power of GPUs to the challenges of databases, visualization and analytics.
  • MarketX’s cross-border investment platform helps international investors with the lack of liquidity for U.S. startup shares and limited access to U.S. pre-IPO investment opportunities.
  • ModoPayments offers financial companies a digital payments hub to connect disparate sources of value to diverse destinations using Modo’s COIN technology.
  • Moonraft Innovation Labs helps banks innovate and evolve by rapidly adapting to changing market needs using Catamera, its unique customer experience delivery framework.
  • Moven’s growing platform reaches the millennial, mobile first, digital native audience by bringing banking (specifically savings) into the moment.
  • MX helps financial institutions become true advocates for their account holders by using analytics to power a revolutionary category of data-driven money management.
  • nanoPay offers a payments and loyalty solution for merchants.
  • Overbond’s digital platform offers transparency, efficiency, and liquidity in the fixed income market for corporate issuers, investors, and dealers.
  • Personetics offers financial services providers a digital personalization platform that uses real-time, ultra-scalable predictive analytics to keep customers engaged in the digital age.
  • ProActive FinTech uses a phone app and debit card featuring unlimited mini bank accounts and pre-purchase categorization to help millennial moms with cash-flow management.
  • QE Data offers commercial banking systems a real-time predictive model for net cash-flows that uses machine learning, rich visualization, speedy deployment and real-world banking experience.
  • Qumram uses 100% real-time, video-like recording of every mouse movement, keystroke and button click to help financial services organizations with compliance and transparency issues relating to digital business.
  • RightCapital’s financial and tax-planning platform helps advisers deliver unbundled, quality financial planning and tax-planning services. It works to efficiently and digitally help consumers with the lack of viable business and technology solutions.
  • SaleMove offers financial institutions a live engagement platform to help sell and service complex financial services products online. The platform uses instant video chat and guided browsing with no downloads or installations.
  • Sindeo’s self-directed consumer rate quote and prequalification tool simplifies home financing and refinancing using an integrated platform that offers consumer, real estate partner, and adviser tools that conform to CFPB regulation and ensure a simple and easy consumer experience.
  • SpeechPro’s customer onboarding solution offers multichannel access to help CTOs, developers and other technologists focus on KYC, identity and verification.
  • Swych’s mobile gifting platform offers gift-card recipients a better way to buy, gift, and manage gift cards.
  • Tango Card’s RaaS API 2.0 uses simple-yet-complete delivery technology and domain expertise to help enterprises deliver incentives efficiently and effectively.
  • TokBox’s Financial Services Accelerator Pack offers banks and financial organizations secure and easy-to-embed, real-time communications technology.
  • TransUnion’s interactive data-visualization solution uses big data and analytics to connect and interpret consumer financial data for lenders.
  • Trulioo’s GlobalGateway uses traditional and cyber ID data sources to offer banks, financial services providers, and online marketplaces secure access to reliable, global data sources for instant ID-verification.
  • Trusona’s anti-replay and TruToken technology offers an insured identity platform for sensitive assets.
  • Unbill’s API enables companies to offer bill pay in their app or technology platform without complicated integration or high costs.
  • Uniken’s REL-ID, a card-not-present approval solution, uses mobile API tool kits and DMZ software appliances to help enterprises secure mobile communications.
  • Urban FT’s enhanced, white-label digital banking platform gives financial services organizations, wireless carriers, and other consumer-facing organizations a long-term, competitive advantage that makes their brand integral to customers’ daily financial and online social activities, financial tools, and social features.
  • Xentral Station’s supply-chain funding app helps vendors of all sizes receive cash for trade financing within 24 hours.
  • Zenmonics uses a single, common platform to help banks and their customers minimize friction in customer engagement with channelUNITED.
  • Zooz offers an agnostic, cross-border payments platform to help merchants act on payment processes and save money to maintain their client base.

Stay tuned on the blog for more detailed descriptions. And don’t forget to register now to reserve your spot.