The following interview is with George Anderson, CEO and founder of Ninth Wave, a Gold Sponsor of FinovateFall.
In the run-up to FinovateFall, we interviewed George Anderson, CEO and founder of Ninth Wave (formerly Enterprise Engineering) to get the scoop on how the company keeps up with ever-changing trends in fintech.
In addition to serving as an expert on information management and technology to solve business problems, Anderson has authored several books and articles on enterprise architecture, relational database design, internet development, and high performance computing. He has 25 years of experience working with leading banks and technology companies in the development of emerging information systems.
Finovate: You founded Ninth Wave (originally Enterprise Engineering Inc.) in 1995. How has the company’s focus shifted to help financial institutions serve clients when customer expectations are changing faster than ever?
George Anderson: I spend a tremendous amount of time with Ninth Wave customers. It is critical to clearly understand the challenges they are facing in a constantly evolving market. This allows Ninth Wave to advance its platform, remain leading edge, and provide constant and ongoing value.
As a platform provider, Ninth Wave must maintain its deep business and technology expertise through continuous communication with our clients. Having founded and run a tech company for 23+ years, I know that contributing to the client’s bottom line is key to success across volatile financial cycles.
Our clients are premier, sophisticated Fortune 500 firms who are ahead of the curve – investing in top talent and the development / acquisition of innovative solutions. As a trusted partner, we have to ensure we are offering a platform that aligns with their requirements and capabilities.
Lastly, by spending so much time with customers, you can anticipate trends and meet customer expectations much faster than they could reasonably expect you to. We are focused on exceeding our clients’ expectations every day.
Finovate: Ninth Wave’s corporate mantra is – “If you’re not moving ahead, you are falling behind!” Tell us about key processes you use to keep the company pushing forward in an industry moving faster than ever.
Anderson: Ninth Wave is a company that has a unique culture of passion about everything we do. This passion for excellent client service, continuous learning, deep expertise, employee engagement and being best-in-class has been the driver that has differentiated us and has us leading the competition.
We hire top talent who thrive in a fast-paced, complex and ever-changing environment. The mixture of collaboration, curiosity, client focus along with the desire to win have been the fuel that powers our creation of new products and make the Ninth Wave platform the preferred solution for our clients.
Our associates are immersed in the financial industry and emerging technologies through learning forums, advisory sessions, client interactions and brainstorming with both Ninth Wave and industry peers. The goal is to align the technology we deliver with the business strategy of our clients to be relevant today and in the future.
Finovate: Ninth Wave has multiple Fortune 500 clients. What is your strategy for capturing and keeping such high-profile clients?
Anderson: The Ninth Wave team has unparalleled experience with Fortune 500 clients. We understand their jobs from the inside, we understand their challenges and the pressure they are up against every day. Given this experience, there is no learning curve for us when we walk in the door. Odds are, we have fixed their problem or addressed their opportunity for one of their peers. We are often told that we cover in one meeting what takes others weeks to do.
We are also in a great position to tell our clients about how they stack up against their competition. What gaps do they have? What is their edge? Their differentiation? Perhaps even more importantly, what are their opportunities for time-to-market for competitive advantage? And what are others doing to leap frog them?
Finovate: Ninth Wave offers a range of products, from data aggregation tools to tax form data. What’s next on the horizon?
Anderson: We believe there is tremendous room for improvement in the financial data ecosystem. The world between banks and consumers is still filled with inefficiencies and cyber risks. Consumers are focused on data access and custom views and are often unaware of the dangers that currently exist.
Already at the next point on the horizon, Ninth Wave is now launching advanced solutions for fintech connectivity that deliver the control and security required by financial institutions and consumers while streamlining the integration of fintech applications.
After this? Ninth Wave is developing a unique and compelling new technology that truly offers business value and best-in-class services. These revolutionary innovations will simplify and provide full transparency to replace the opaque and often fragmented current environments.
Ninth Wave will continue to focus on providing unparalleled connectivity to unlock data for authorized and secure delivery for financial institutions. We will keep you posted as we finalize the reveal date.