Finovate Alumni News


  • TransferWise to Power Payroll for Crowdfunding Platform Seedrs.
  • Behalf Lands Equity Funding and Secures $150 Million in Debt Financing.
  • Blockchain Appoints New President and Chief Legal Officer.

Around the web

  • Challenger bank Tandem to leverage Personetics Cognitive Banking Brain to provide personalized financial guidance for customers.
  • Equifax introduces commercial credit data sharing solution for SME lenders.
  • Bluefin Payment Systems partners with EDC Corporation to improve security for credit card transactions.

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.

Finovate Alumni News


  • Building A Better Onboarding Experience: Avoka Introduces CX Design for Banking.
  • IBM to Build Blockchain-Based Trade Finance Solution for Seven European Banks.

Around the web

  • CaxtonFX introduces multi-currency account for SMEs.
  • ACI Worldwide teams up with regional payment service provider Peach Payments to launch Alipay in South Africa.
  • TransferTo partners with MallforAfrica to provide African shoppers with access to retailers in Europe and the U.S.
  • Let’s Talk Payments interviews FixNix founder and CEO Shanmugavel Sankaran.
  • Equifax and OpenGI combine forces to bring better fraud prevention technology to brokers.

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.

FinDEVr APIntelligence

FDLD17_EventLogoV1_wdate(large) (1)We saw some great stuff at FinDEVr New York earlier this year. If you missed out, check out FinDEVr London on June 12 & 13 during London Tech Week. Register today and save big time.


  • FinDEVr Veteran OutsideIQ Acquired by Exiger

Alumni updates

  • Plaid and Dwolla partner to provide fully-tokenized ACH payment integration.
  • Xero features its partnership with Equifax.
  • London Metal Exchange locates LMEselect Platform at Interxion’s Data Center
  • Envestnet unveils expanded data analytics portfolio for wealth management.
  • FinDEVr Alum Quovo Raises $10 Million
  • Prival Bank of Panama to deploy Temenos’ core banking solution, T24.
  • Trulioo adds new Canadian data sources to its GlobalGateway verification technology.
  • Jay Shah promoted to CEO of Personal Capital
  • Xero awarded the Best Overall Fintech Platform by the Fintech Breakthrough Awards.

Stay current on daily news from the fintech developer community! Follow FinDEVr on Twitter.

Finovate Alumni News


  • OutsideIQ Acquired by Global Compliance Specialist, Exiger.

Around the web

  • Jack Henry & Associates named a Best Place to Work in Kentucky.
  • Xero features its partnership with Equifax.
  • London Metal Exchange locates LMEselect Platform at Interxion’s Data Center
  • Envestnet unveils expanded data analytics portfolio for wealth management.
  • Leondrino Exchange announces the first two branded currencies for startups.

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.

Why PropTech and MortgageTech Are the Future of Fintech

If this is the first time you’ve heard the term proptech, it won’t be the last. Proptech (also known as real estate tech or REtech) and its subset mortgagetech have been around since 2014. Here’s why 2017 is poised to place proptech among the ranks of wealthtech, insurtech, regtech.

This year has already been favorable to mortgagetech and proptech companies. SoFi, for example, is about to close a massive, $500 million round, its competitor LendingHome topped $1 billion in mortgage loan originations last year, and RealtyShares has seen over $300 million raised on its platform. According to CB Insights, since 2012 the real estate technology sector has closed 817 deals worth $6.4 billion. Of that amount, $2.6 billion closed in 2016 alone, which represents a 40% increase from that sector’s funding in 2015.

In the U.S., there are a handful of reasons 2017 will be favorable to real estate. Interest rates are projected to rise for the second time, millennials are starting to buy their first homes, and investors are looking to diversify out of the volatile stock market. On top of all of this, regulations are slated to loosen under the Trump administration, and changing in regulation brings opportunities for innovation.


The broader category of proptech can be broken down into four basic segments.

1- Mortgagetech
These are mostly B2B companies specifically focused on facilitating part of all of the mortgage application process. They do not lend or service the loan.

2- Digital mortgage lending companies
These online lenders facilitate the mortgage application process and service the loan.

3- Real estate investment tech
Companies in this category are focused on the investment aspect of commercial and residential real estate.

4- Pure property plays
These don’t have a fintech angle but play a role in the broader proptech industry. Since this category is out of scope for this blog, this list only encompasses a fraction of companies in this category. Check out CB Insights’ coverage of commercial real estate technology for more.

What’s ahead in 2017

  • Expect to see more mortgagetech-bank partnerships along the lines of Roostify’s recent deal with JP Morgan Chase. As banks try to gain a competitive edge for market share, more established banks will need to leverage mortgagetech offerings.
  • We’ll see more niche alt-lending solutions such as SoFi that facilitate the application process and save borrowers on closing costs.
  • Expect to see more players offering real estate investment technology, coupled with some consolidation in real estate crowdfunding companies.
  • Outside of fintech, we’ll see more platforms aimed at cutting out the middle person, the realtor; and more business models such as Knock and GoldenKey that make the selling process easier.

You don’t have to take my word for it

We posed the question, How do you see proptech/ mortgagetech growing in 2017? to these Finovate alums working in the space. Here’s how they responded:

BhatRajesh Bhat, CEO and cofounder of Roostify:

“We expect to see further widescale adoption of digital mortgage solutions – to the point where one should expect it to be table stakes in 2018. We should also expect to see more players emerge in the space as investors see larger market adoption and validation.”


Screen Shot 2017-02-23 at 9.52.53 AMLinda Schicktanz, Chief Advisor of CK Mack*:

“If there is one area ripe for fintech innovation, it’s real estate investing. Why put 30% down just to gain massive management headaches when you can now invest in rental cashflow online with very similar returns? Fintech and Real Estate are like peanut butter and jelly, they just go together!”

Screen Shot 2017-02-23 at 8.30.31 AMNima Ghamsari, cofounder and CEO at Blend:

“There is going to be an explosion in the use of data driving the mortgage process in 2017. Both Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae have announced their data initiatives toward the end of 2016, and lenders are starting to push consumer financial data aggregation into the core components of their customer experiences. This ties in nicely to the industry-wide push forward to a more digital, end-to-end process that started in 2016.”

Screen Shot 2017-02-24 at 4.07.54 PMJilliene Helman, CEO at RealtyMogul

“The impact of digital technology on the real estate industry and mortgage technology is still in its infancy, but I see both less experienced and more sophisticated investors, alike, moving toward a process that takes place entirely online. With over $250 million of capital invested and 100,000 registered investors on the platform, is a testament to this change. The more that technology can offer real estate borrowers and lenders transparency, as well as the efficiency of process and convenience, the faster both sides will adapt.”

*Full disclosure: I’m related to Linda Schicktanz. Yup– she’s my mom.

Finovate Alumni News


Around the web

  • Crealogix selects Philippe Wirth as new CFO starting in May.
  • QIIB to deploy Sharia-compliant, core banking technology from Misys.
  • Wipro announces new partnership in and investment with Tradeshift.
  • Skipton International to upgrade its legacy platform with core banking technology from Temenos.
  • Avoka names former KPMG executive Matt Lewis as new CFO. Join Avoka in London for FinovateEurope in February.
  • Vantiv partners with CardFlight to Offer EMV Mobile POS Solution.
  • Equifax and Fiserv join forces to provide income and employment verification services to auto lenders.
  • Forbes features GainX founder Angelique Mohring. Come see GainX’s demo live at FinovateEurope next week.

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.

Equifax Shakes Up Mortgage Tech with Castlight Partnership


Consumer insights and credit scoring company Equifax has partnered with Castlight this week to launch a mortgage affordability platform. The new system aims to help brokers reduce the mortgage application process to 10 minutes.

The platform helps mortgage brokers underwrite loans more efficiently by enabling applicants to grant the lender an Affordability Passport that allows them to view the applicant’s credit score and spending history. The passport gives brokers access to the client’s real-time financial data, which offers a granular view into how the potential borrower manages credit and shows their overall financial standing. Birmingham, U.K.-based Paradigm Mortgage Services will be one of the first distributors of the new platform.

Jake Ranson, Banking & Financial Institutions Director at Equifax U.K., described the new offering as “something unique to the market” and said it will “help customers have more control over their data and… make it easier for the financial services industry to make use of data.”

This is just one example of a larger trend we’ve seen in the burgeoning real estate or mortgage tech sector of the fintech industry. Other innovators in this space include Sindeo (FF16, FDSV16), Envestnet|Yodlee (FF16), Roostify (FS16), Kofax (FS16), Hip Pocket (FS15), Tactile Finance (FS14), Mortgage Harmony (FF12), Mortgagebot (FF10), eyeOpen (FEU13), and Blend (FS16, FDSV 16).

Headquartered in Atlanta, Equifax was recently listed on Forbes’ list of 100 Most Innovative Public Companies. The company is also one of 49 public fintech companies listed on the KBW Nasdaq Financial Technology Index. Equifax debuted new features for its mobile app at FinovateFall 2011 in New York.

Finovate Alumni News


  • AnchorID Adds Apple, SolarCity Vet Mark Roe to Board of Directors.
  • Equifax Shakes Up Mortgage Tech with Castlight Partnership
  • Payfone Lands $23.5 Million in Funding

Around the web

  • Pakistan’s Samba Bank to deploy new core banking technology from Temenos.
  • Infosys’s core banking software Finacle goes live at Nepal’s Sunrise Bank.
  • ACI Worldwide to provide fraud protection for Kuwait’s Shared Electronic Banking Services Company (KNET).
  • Mitek partners with the American Cancer Society, supporting mobile fundraising with its mobile deposit and MiSnap technology.
  • Check Point Software partners with Attivo Networks to improve fraud detection.
  • DAVO Technologies has just been approved as a Certified Electronic Return Originator (ERO) with the California State Board of Equalization.

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.


Four Fintech Companies in Forbes 100 Most Innovative Public Companies

forbes innovators list

We love seeing alums called out in the numerous “most innovative” articles. Usually, those skew to young private startups. But the recent Forbes list of innovators, limited to large public companies (minimum market cap = $10 billion, with 7 years of public ownership), didn’t disappoint. Four financial technology companies made the top-100 list, and all four have appeared on the Finovate stage. Interestingly, financial services firms are excluded by Forbes on the grounds that they “have no measurable investment in R&D.” (I am sure many readers would argue that point).

Here are the financial fab-four in order of their finish (the innovation premium is the extra value investors place on their growth vs. their enterprise value, methodology):

Note: Experian will be showing its latest tech at Finovate this week as well (sneak peek)

A Look at the First Week of Nasdaq’s Fintech Index

While many of you were busy catching Pikachu last week, you may have missed that Nasdaq, in collaboration with KBW, launched an index to track financial technology. Officially named KBW Nasdaq Financial Technology Index (KFTX), the fund tracks 49 fintech companies, including 17 Finovate and FinDEVr alums.

On Monday, 18 July, the index opened at 1,000 points and closed at almost 1,014 points on Friday, 22 July.

Screen Shot 2016-07-25 at 2.52.11 PM

Finovate and FinDEVr alums listed in the index include:

According to Nasdaq’s press release, the companies in the index “represent roughly one-fifth (18%) of the investable domestic financial universe and nearly 4% of the investable domestic equity universe to account for approximately $785 billion in total market cap.”

It’s worth noting that the index, which will be rebalanced quarterly, does not consider activity from private companies, startups, or banks. Large, public companies may not be as sprightly as two guys in a garage, but they create their fair share of cutting-edge products and services. When creating the index, KBW and Nasdaq adhered to three guidelines:

  1. The companies mainly sell financial services
  2. Not primarily brick-and-mortar operated
  3. Income is generated from fees, rather than interest

Other companies in the index include (each company in the index is weighted equally):

Alliance Data Systems Corp. (ADS); Bankrate Inc. (RATE); Black Knight Financial Services Inc. (BKFS); BofI Holding Inc. (BOFI); Broadridge Financial Solutions Inc. (BR); Cardtronics Inc. (CATM); CBOE Holdings Inc. (CBOE); CME Group Inc. (CME); CoreLogic Inc. (CLGX); Dun & Bradstreet Corp. (DNB); Euronet Worldwide Inc. (EEFT); EverBank Financial Corp. (EVER); EVERTEC Inc. (EVTC); FactSet Research Systems Inc. (FDS); First Data Corp. (FDC); FleetCor Technologies Inc. (FLT); Global Payments Inc. (GPN); Intercontinental Exchange Inc. (ICE); MarketAxess Holdings Inc. (MKTX); Moody’s Corp. (MCO); MSCI Inc. (MSCI); Nasdaq Inc. (NDAQ); S&P Global Inc. (SPGI); SEI Investments Co. (SEIC); Square Inc. (SQ); SS&C Technologies Holdings Inc. (SSNC); Total System Services (TSS); The Western Union Co. (WU); VeriFone Systems Inc. (PAY); Verisk Analytics Inc. (VRSK); Virtu Financial Inc. (VIRT); and WEX Inc. (WEX).

Zopa Partners with Equifax, Boosting its Risk-profiling Capabilities


Zopa teamed up with credit reporting agency and fellow Finovate alum Equifax to improve the way Zopa determines the creditworthiness of potential borrowers. According to Zopa CEO Jaidev Janardana:

Equifax has extensive experience of the P2P sector. Its in-depth understanding of our business needs, coupled with the strength of its data, plays a vital role in ensuring we offer the best customer experience possible.

Of all the innovative methods for risk profiling—from big data to social media—the information available from credit reference agencies like Equifax remains as critical for online lenders as it is for offline lenders. And while Zopa and Equifax have been working together since 2005, Janardana says that the new agreement gives Zopa “deeper insights into customer behavior” and should result in a better-performing loan portfolio for Zopa, along with better rates for many customers.


Craig Tebbutt, head of alternative lending at Equifax, praised Zopa’s role in helping drive P2P lending in the United Kingdom. Tebbutt suggested that 2016 would be a “key year” for Zopa, pointing to the rise in institutional funding and the arrival of the Innovative Finance Individual Savings Accounts (IFISA) in early April. Investors will be able to set up IFISA accounts through P2P lenders like Zopa and earn tax-free interest from lending portions of their savings to SMEs on the platform.

Facts and stats from Zopa:

  • Over £1 billion lent to U.K. customers
  • More than 50,000 active lenders
  • More than 150,000 borrowers
  • Most loans exceed £7,000
  • Staff of 150

Founded in 2007 and headquartered in San Francisco, Zopa demonstrated its technology at FinovateSpring 2008. Making its Finovate debut at FinovateFall 2011 in New York, Equifax demonstrated Equifax Complete, its interactive score-estimator and score-monitoring solution.

Join hundreds of fintech fans in London in February for FinovateEurope 2016. Our two-day conference returns to Old Billingsgate Market Hall on February 9 & 10. Visit our registration page today and save your spot.

Finovate Alumni News


  • “Prosper’s BillGuard Unlocks Premium Features for All Users.
  • “Zopa Partners with Equifax, Boosting its Risk-profiling Capabilities”

Around the web

  • Ledger launches developer edition of hardware wallet.
  • Jack Henry’s ProfitStars now has 20+ institutions that have implemented Gladiator Hosted Network Solutions.
  • RTN FCU to power its insurance agency with Insuritas.
  • InComm plans Atlanta expansion, will add 200 employees.
  • TransferTo joins with Continental Money to bring remittance services to Kenya.
  • Bankless Times features Bento for Business and its solution for helping small businesses control employee spending.
  • Marx Noctor of Arxan explains the importance of protecting apps “down to the source code” in CBR Online.
  • Business2Community features Expensify and DocuSign in its list of nine apps to help you run your business on the go. See DocuSign at FinovateEurope 2016 in London.
  • Adelaide Now profiles small-business lender Spotcap. Join Spotcap in London for FinovateEurope 2016.
  • Mobile ID World looks at the reception to EyeVerify’s mobile app.
  • Tradier reaches milestone: 100 financial services firms are now directly integrated with Tradier’s brokerage platform.

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.