“Recognition as a leading innovator in fintech is tremendous validation for the hard work we’ve done at Marqeta to open the industry up to the possibilities and opportunities of modern card issuing,” company CEO and founder Jason Gardner said. Marqeta is among the 20 companies to make its first appearance on the Forbes Fintech 50 roster.
Also earning their first appearances on Forbes Fintech 50 roster are New York based mobile investment platform Stash and San Francisco supply chain payments innovator Tradeshift.
“Very excited to be included in the 2019 Forbes Fintech 50!,” Stash tweeted once the news was released at the start of the week, “Monday = made.”
“We made the list!” Tradeshift tweeted this morning.
Summarizing this year’s selection of top fintechs, the editors noted that while 19 out of the 50 fintechs featured are unicorns with valuations of more than $1 billion, a nearly equal amount – 20 startups – are making their first showing on Forbes top fintech list. The two areas where newcomers were more prevalent, according to the editors, were payments technology and startups serving the un- and underbanked.
The fintech space is filled with new players bringing to market new innovations and solutions to old business and consumer problems, as well as traditional businesses looking to develop in-house innovation teams and partner with start-ups. But what they both have in common is a desire to meet and exceed changing customer demands, make financial services more accessible and user-friendly, and keep up with the fast-paced technological advances. During FinovateFall, we sat down with the experts on the ground to ask them about what’s driving the fintech ecosystem where they work.
Andrew Boyajian, Head of Banking, North America, Transferwise on overcoming regulatory challenges to launch a global product.
Neeraj Arora, Global Head of Decision Science and Data Automation – Personal Insurance at AIG on the importance of an innovation branch in the business and why they should work hand-in-hand with start-ups.
David Snitkof, Head of Data Integration & Insights at Kabbage discusses leveraging data and why it should be more than just plugging in some numbers to get an output.
Christian Zimmerman, Co-founder & CEO, Qoins on the pain points which lead him to Qoins and what the future has in-store for crowd-funding to pay back loans.
Alyson Clarke, Principal Analyst, Forrester on the three components for a quality customer experience.
Online lender Kabbage has been providing working capital to small businesses since 2009. This week, the startup’s President, Kathryn Petralia, disclosed plans to enter into payment processing by year end.
The company hopes the move will diversify its offerings, which have largely stayed in the same sector since 2009. Kabbage also anticipates the launch will help it compete with ever-rising fintech giants such as PayPal and Square, both of which started as payment processing solutions and have since added small business lending services. The payment processing offering will leverage Kabbage’s existing small business client base, providing merchants solutions for in-store and online payments.
In an interview with Reuters, who broke the news on Monday, Petralia said, “The monoline businesses have a hard time succeeding long term.” She added, “We have seen a huge pain point around cash flow management,” noting that payment service providers’ lengthy contracts and high fees contribute to the issue.
As with many fintech developments these days, this one comes down to data. When Kabbage gains insight into transaction data from small business clients, it can more accurately underwrite loans for those clients. Additionally, access to client data will offer Kabbage an advantage when serving its existing client base. The company can speed up traditionally slow onboarding and application processes by leveraging data it already has on existing clients.
Kabbage demoed at FinovateSpring 2015, where it debuted the Kabbage Card, which allows users to withdraw from their line of credit at any point-of-sale where VISA is accepted. Earlier this year, the company expanded its line of credit to $250k and most recently announced the acquisition of online lending competitor Orchard.