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Tracking fintech, banking & financial services innovations since 1994
Canada Day is this week, July 1st. The holiday – colloquially considered by some to be Canada’s “birthday” – celebrates the decision of three provinces in 1867 – modern-day Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Ontario, and Quebec – to unify and form the country we now know and love as Canada.
Last year, we launched our inaugural recognition of fintech companies – Finovate alums all – who were founded in or operate out of Canada. From Calgary, Edmonton, and Montreal to Ottawa, Toronto, and Vancouver, Canadian fintechs have gained a reputation for cutting-edge innovation in everything from helping small businesses secure critical financing during the COVID pandemic to advancing new use cases for the latest cryptocraze: non-fungible tokens (NFTs).
Today, we honor Canada Day with a salute to those Canadian fintechs that have joined the Finovate family since our last reporting from the Great White North.
Boss Insights (Toronto, Ontario) – demo – Business-data-as-a-service innovator bridging the data gap between banks and their business customers.
Coconut Software (Saskatoon, Saskatchewan) – demo – Customer engagement platform for financial institutions to enhance the digital and physical engagement of both staff and customers.
Dbilia (Vancouver, British Colombia) – demo – A digital memorabilia marketplace that leverages Blockchain technology and NFTs to empower creatives and enable fans to purchase their work. Best of Show winner.
FormHero (Toronto, Ontario) – demo – A low-code SaaS platform that helps enterprises build intuitive, digital front-end experiences to help them manage and orchestrate complex data collection.
JUDI.ai (Vancouver, British Colombia) – demo – An AI-driven analytics platform to enhance small business lenders’ loan origination processes with instant cash flow analysis, automated underwriting, as well as continuous monthly monitoring and real-time reporting.
We also saw the return of Flybitsthis spring. The Toronto-based company demonstrated its MyCard solution that consolidates all of a bank’s products and services on the bank’s existing mobile app and provides dynamic recommendations tailored to the customer’s needs.
Looking to FinovateFall in September, what can we expect from fintech’s Canadian contingent? This week we introduced the first wave of demoing companies for our annual fall fintech event and were happy to see that Finovate veteran Cinchy, from Toronto, Ontario, will be back. With FinovateFall marking the return of live demos after more than a year in a digital-only format, we can’t wait to see what other innovative Canadian fintechs will join in the fun.
Two of the biggest themes in fintech – digital identity and the rise of fintech in Central and Eastern Europe – meet in the latest announcement from biometric authentication specialist and Finovate Best of Show winner iProov. The company’s facial recognition technology now makes it easier for users of SK ID Solutions’ Smart-ID Service in countries like Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania to renew their accounts without having to visit a physical bank branch.
“This is a major development for all digital identity providers,” iProov CEO Andrew Bud said. “Estonia has proved, for the first time, that a remote, automated, biometric ID verification service can deliver the highest possible levels of security.”
Recognized as equal to a handwritten signature throughout Europe, Smart-IDs enable users to authenticate themselves and provide permissions online using a smartphone app. iProov’s facial recognition technology adds a three-second scan to compare the image of the user to the image on their presented ID document to help defend against fraud and identity theft.
Smart-ID also leverages NFC-based ReadID document verification technology from InnoValor.
Financial crime risk management innovator Featurespace will be helping Enfuce combat fraud and money laundering courtesy of a newly announced partnership. Enfuce, a financial services firm based in Finland, will use Featurespace’s ARIC Risk Hub to enhance its ability to protect its customers from fraud and financial crime.
“Our clients deserve industry-leading services that allow them to freely and fully concentrate on the success of their core business, without worrying about ever-evolving fraud,” Enfuce co-founder and chair Monika Liikamaa said.
ARIC Risk Hub offers real-time transaction monitoring for fraud and financial crime, enabling institutions to identify and act against anomalous and potentially dangerous behavior as it occurs. The technology also reduces the number of false positives by as much as 70%, keeping anti-fraud processes efficient. Featurespace introduced its fraud-fighting technology to Finovate audiences at FinovateEurope 2016.
Here is a round up of recent news from our Finovate alumni.
Sezzleunveils new logo along with its first annual report.
Flybitsexpands its executive team in New York, Toronto, the U.K., and Dubai.
Yseop and Automation Anywhere join forces to scale intelligent automation.
Lighter Capitalappoints Kevin Fink at CTO and Patricia Elliott as CSO.
InCommlaunches Roblox gift cards in France and Germany.
Finovate Alum Features and Profiles
Revolut’s $500 Million Round Boosts Valuation to $5.5 Billion – Global financial platform Revolut has secured its place as the U.K.’s most valuable fintech.
Dealing with Deepfakes in Fintech – The fintech industry is ripe with security firms, such as iProov, that use AI to combat both video and audio deepfakes with anti-spoofing technologies.
Envestnet | Yodlee Acquires Indian Data Aggregator FinBit.io – Envestnet | Yodlee has acquired another asset in its strategy to further grow and develop its data aggregation and analytics business.
Meet Sonect: Cash Network Builder, Finovate Newcomer, Best of Show Winner – What’s better than having a large pizza with all your favorite toppings delivered to your front door? How about a side order of cash, saving you a trip to the ATM or bank branch?
Azimo Taps Ripple for Cross-Border Payments to the Philippines – Fueling these payment transfers is Ripple’s On-Demand Liquidity (ODL) solution that uses XRP to source liquidity and complete money transfers within three seconds.
Lendio Lands $55 Million to Match Small Businesses with Lenders – The investment more than doubles the company’s previous funding, bringing its total to $108.5 million.
SheerID Expands Identity Marketing Platform – The move enables brands to identify and acquire new customers across the globe.
The newly-released Fintech Power 50 for 2020 features ten Finovate alums. The roster is produced every December and bills itself as “meant to be controversial and provoke debate” while at the same time providing “inspiration to the rest of the industry.”
“Throughout its first year the Fintech Power 50 has seen consistent success for our members and we are very proud of the opportunities that being a member of the Power 50 has offered the companies involved,” Fintech Power 50 Managing Director and co-founder Jason Williams said. “We look forward to continuing the traction we have made this year with the 2020 cohort, with a more ambitious and exciting programme.”
The Fintech Power 50 aims to help fintechs reach a broader audience around the world. Over the course of 2020, the program will offer media partnerships and networking, business development and branding support, and investment and talent acquisition. This year marks the third edition of the program; coincidentally, the 2019 Power 50 featured ten Finovate alums, as well.
“We’re incredibly excited at this announcement, which is clear recognition of Keepabl’s value to customers, and to trusted advisers alike, and our potential to keep disrupting compliance-as-a-service,” wrote Keepabl CEO Robert Baugh in an email.
CREALOGIX CEO David Joyce added that he was “looking forward to exchanging ideas with the renowned digital leaders in this unique group.” He praised the way the roster reflected “the breadth, diversity, and creativity of the global fintech scene.”
The Fintech Power 50 2020 also features ten fintech thought leaders whose names will be familiar to Finovate veterans. Nine of the ten – David Birch, Ghela Boskovich, Theo Lau, Brett King, Jim Marous, Devie Mohan, David Parker, and Ruth Wandhofer – have made major contributions to our Finovate conferences since we expanded our format in 2017. We’ll have to get Mr. Lawrence Wintermeyer, co-founder of Global Digital Finance and the tenth thought leader on this year’s Fintech Power 50, to a Finovate stage sooner than later!
A look at the companies demoing live at FinovateMiddleEast on November 20 and 21, 2019 in Dubai. Register today and save your spot.
Flybits enables financial institutions to deliver hyper-personalized customer experiences, leveraging contextual intelligence and AI.
Transform your mobile app into a sales channel
Assemble proprietary, public, and device data to deliver contextual experiences
Lower marketing costs and raise conversion rates
Why it’s great Flybits powers mobile, in-app marketing and sales for banks.
Amir Yazdanpanah, Managing Director (MENA Region) Yazdanpanah is an entrepreneurial IT executive with extensive experience in software product development, product sales and marketing, business operations, and P/L management. LinkedIn
Rebecca Engelberg, Market Intelligence Manager Engelberg specializes in Market Intelligence, monitoring industry trends and translating them into actionable insights for sales, marketing and product strategy. LinkedIn
In a round led by Point72 Ventures, contextual data intelligence specialist Flybits has raised $35 million in new funding. The fresh capital takes the company’s total equity financing to $50 million, and will help drive its growth in EMEA, Latin America, and the U.S.
The Series C round featured participation from Mastercard, Citi Ventures, and Reinventure, which was backed by Westpac Banking Corporation of Australia. Existing investors Portag3 Ventures, TD Bank Group and Information Venture Partners contributed to the round, as well.
The financing will also enable Flybits to commercialize its portfolio of AI and machine learning patents, as well as make enhancements to UX and design. Flybits also plans to launch a marketplace to make it easier for financial institutions, fintechs, and financial data providers to collaborate on new products and services.
“Banks are looking for ways to maximize their use of data and better engage with customers, but are having a hard time executing and scaling this on their own or by leveraging passive PFM (personal financial management) services,” Flybits founder and CEO Dr. Hossein Rahnama explained. “Flybits enables banks to use real-time data and contextual intelligence to shift to those new models and go to market with them faster without over reliance on their IT department.”
Point72 Ventures Partner Tripp Shriner shared Rahnama’s view on this new challenge for banks and other FIs, whom Shriner said “are struggling to communicate with their customers about their products and services in the digital environment.” He praised Flybits for developing a “superior end-to-end solution for personalization of the digital customer experience.”
Today’s investment comes just a few months after Flybits announced that it was a key enabler of the Mastercard Contextual Engagement Solution. The technology is the first product built using the Mastercard Innovation Engine and helps drive contextually-relevant and personalized digital engagement. Last fall, Flybits announced it would work with TD Bank Group to provide enhanced, “micro-personalized” mobile experiences to the bank customers.
Founded in 2013 and headquartered in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, Flybits demonstrated its contextual recommendation engine at FinovateSpring in May. The technology leverages behavioral data and combinations of data sets to provide a deeper understanding of individual customer behavior and preferences based on collective experiences.