Finovate Alumni News


  • “Tagit Locks in More than $8 Million in New Funding”


  • “Symbiont to Help Delaware Embrace the Blockchain”

Around the web

  • “OutsideIQ Launches Real-Time Risk Monitoring Tool”
  • Check Point launches free Security Checkups for Australian and New Zealand enterprises.
  • Business Insider covers the birth of BlackRock’s FutureAdvisor.
  • NuData Security more than doubles behavioral transaction volume in the past year, following rapid adoption of its NuDetect solution.
  • Ayondo doubles Revenues in 2015 to £7.3 million.
  • Jack Henry extends Banno platform to Windows 10.
  • Avalara discusses plans to use blockchain technology to track asset ownership.
  • Matchi to host the Liberty Fintech Challenge 2016.
  • quotes Bazaarvoice CMO Sara Spivey on marketing to millennials with user-generated content.

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


  • Check out this week’s FinDEVr APIntelligence.
  • “Avalara, Signifyd Bring Sales Tax, Fraud Solutions to Magento E-Commerce Marketplace”
  • “Ixaris Receives $6 Million in Funding After Spinning Off from Parent Company”

Around the web

  • BankNxt’s BIGcast interviews CEO Steve Hoffman of SayPay Technologies.
  • OutsideIQ joins fintech accelerator, Bank Innovation INV, as an API partner. See OutsideIQ at FinovateSpring in San Jose next month.
  • Vix Verify opens new offices in Atlanta, Georgia’s Transaction Alley as part of American expansion.
  • Algomi partners with IPC Systems to support buy-side users of its Honeycomb network.
  • Bank Innovation takes a look at CBANC and its effort to make social media work for banks.
  • “AuthenticID Wins All Payments Expo Shark Tank with CatfishAIR Identity Verification Solution”
  • Chase launches OnDeck-powered SMB Loan platform.
  • “CardFlight and Miura Systems Partner to Offer EMV and NFC Mobile POS Solution to the U.S Market”
  • MIT adopts Ripple validator to advance consensus and blockchain research.
  • “LPL Selects BlackRock’s FutureAdvisor as Robo Platform”
  • CIOReview names Praesidio in list of top 20 Most Promising Banking Technology Solution Providers for 2016.

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


  • “FinovateSpring 2016: Last Chance for presale tickets!”
  • “Exit Stage Right: Trustev sells to TransUnion for $44 Million”
  • “CBANC Network Garners $4 Million in Series B Funding”

Around the web

  • Kony launches Mobile Field Service solution to make field workers mobile.
  • Glassdoor recognizes Credit Karma as one of the Best Places to Work in 2016 in Employee Choice Awards.
  • KPMG and Taulia partner to help organizations improve supplier relations.
  • Prosper launches new investor API platform, as well as developer documentation site.
  • SayPay Technologies and MaxMyInterest win Acceleration Awards in the UBS Future of Finance Challenge.
  • Crains New York Business highlights MaxMyInterest as a New York fintech startup.

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.

Finovate Alums Earn Spots Among UBS Future of Finance Finalists

Finovate Alums Earn Spots Among UBS Future of Finance Finalists

UBS_logo_FutureofFinanceSayPay Technologies, Stratos, and Wealthforge will compete for top honors at the UBS Future of Finance Challenge on 10/December in Zurich. The three will join nine other finalists vying for $50,000, 300+ hours of mentoring, and the opportunity to develop their technology in a UBS innovation center.


(Click image to watch video)

The Future of Finance Challenge had more than 600 applicants. Regional Finals were held this month in Zurich, London, Singapore, and New York. To be eligible, entrants must not have received a Series A or total funding of more than $10 million. Solutions presented could be an idea, concept, or a functional demo and needed to either “focus directly on, or have a potential connection or application with, banking and financial services.”

SayPay-logo-noshadowsAll three Finovate alums reaching the finals made their Finovate debuts at FinovateSpring 2015 in San Jose. SayPay Technologies, a finalist from the Singapore round, will go into the finals with its Customer Authentication Experience. SayPay CEO Steve Hoffman said, “The distinguished panel of UBS judges was quick to recognize how SayPay transforms fragmented current authentication solutions into a seamless, enjoyable customer interaction with their financial institutions.” SayPay was founded in February 2014 and is headquartered in Pleasanton, California. The company launched its BillPay and Secure Web Sign-In at FinovateSpring 2015 in May.

Stratos_logo_snaggitfromboxStratos presented its wallet-simplifying, Bluetooth Connected Card with enhanced security, and emerged from the same New York round as fellow Finovate alum, Wealthforge. Stratos demonstrated its technology at FinovateSpring 2015 in May. It was founded in 2012 and is headquartered in Ann Arbor, Michigan; Thiago Olsen is CEO.

WealthForge logo copyWealthforge impressed UBS judges with its automated, integrated risk management solution for issuers and intermediaries. Mat Dellorso, CEO and co-founder, wrote at his company’s blog: “With the WealthForge Invest Button, anyone raising private capital can take advantage of an intuitive, modern approach to managing the process of raising more capital in less time.” Wealthforge was founded in 2011 and is based in Richmond, Virginia. Wealthforge gave Finovate audiences a look at the Invest Button during its demo at FinovateSpring 2015.

Also competing in the New York round were Finovate alums, MaxMyInterest and Coinalytics. FinovateEurope 2015 veteran CashSentinel represented Finovate alums in the Zurich round.

Joining SayPay Technologies, Stratos, and Wealthforge in Zurich will be:

European fintech fans! Join us in February as Finovate returns to London for FinovateEurope 2016. For more information, and to save your spot, visit our FinovateEurope page.

Finovate Alumni News


  • “Finovate Debuts: Sliced Investing Provides Advisers with Access to Alternative Investments”
  • “Narrative Science Introduces Anti-money Laundering Solution, Quill for AML
  • “Yodlee’s Ynext Unveils New Incubator Class”

Around the web

  • Thomson Reuters unveils latest version of its tax technology platform, Thomson Reuters ONESOURCE.
  • Re/code looks at ShopKeep POS’s growth and newly hired COO, Michael DeSimone.
  • Currency Cloud partners with API-driven Fidor Bank to provide new SEPA Direct Debit functionality.
  • Hedgeable to take part in Yodlee’s Ynext Launchpad.
  • Business Insider lists eToro, BehavioSec, Klarna, and Fidor, as “companies we wish were big the U.S.”
  • Silicon Slopes Podcast hosts Ryan Caldwell, MX CEO, as he discusses how to improve online banking.
  • RTN Federal Credit Union re-ups with Fiserv’s XP2 account-processing platform.
  • Meniga to power Santander’s PFM.

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.

Ask Finovate: Who’s Who in Voice-banking Technology?

Ask Finovate: Who’s Who in Voice-banking Technology?

Telephone with piggy bank – call for help

A few days ago, we received a query from a Finovate follower:

“Can you please provide a list of companies that have demoed their voice-banking technology over the last few years?”

Interesting question! We trolled through our archives and here’s what we found.

When it comes to voice banking, ebankIT (FinovateEurope 2015); Interactions (FinovateEurope 2014); and ETRONIKA (FinovateEurope 2014) have all demonstrated innovative voice-banking technologies on the Finovate stage in recent years. It may not be a coincidence that all three companies won Best of Show awards for those demonstrations, as well.


ebankIT Director Joao Lima Pinto and Omnichannel Specialist Paulo Oliviera demonstrated omnichannel social banking at FinovateEurope 2015 in London.

Another company worth mentioning is Finantix. The three-time Finovate veteran demoed its Smart Banking Assistant which responds to commands and queries posed in natural language, and is a part of the company’s Finantix Sharp multichannel platform.

Larger alums also have made inroads into voice banking. This cohort includes Fiserv, whose Voice Response for DNA solution is providing voice-banking services to a growing number of FIs, including credit unions, and ACI Worldwide, specializing in providing voice banking technology to community FIs via its Voice Banking suite within the ACI Self-service Banking platform.


Interactions Marketing Manager Dan Fox demoed conversational solutions for banks and FIs at FinovateSpring 2014 in San Jose.

A number of Finovate alums have built and deployed voice-banking technologies, while emphasizing on stage only a small component of that technology, such as real-time authentication. These companies include NICE Systems (most recently at FinovateEurope 2015 and a Best of Show winner at FinovateFall 2014) and Q2ebanking (FinovateSpring 2011).

Also, many alums have focused on voice biometrics as an authentication solution without being a full voice-banking-platform provider. These companies include Canada’s VoiceTrust (FinovateEurope 2013); Great Britain’s ValidSoft (FinovateSpring 2013); Best of Show winners AnchorID (FinovateFall 2014) and BehavioSec (most recently at FinDEVr 2014) from New York and Sweden, respectively.


ETRONIKA CEO Kęstutis Gardžiulis and Head of Marketing Asta Sabaite demonstrated BANKTRON at FinovateEurope 2014.

Additionally, a handful of alums have developed technologies that complement voice banking. SayPay Technologies made its Finovate debut in London this year with a voice-driven bill-pay solution. IntelliResponse, which was recently acquired by [24]7 for its customer service chat resources, last deployed its virtual agent technology at Bank of Internet USA, adding the oldest internet bank in America to its roster of more than 450 deployments across more than 150 brands and institutions.

There is an even broader field of companies that leverage voice technologies to help consumers make payments and transfer money, manage their finances, and even direct investments. Some of these companies, e.g., Credit Sesame, are using Siri-like functionality to improve the customer experience, while others such as mBank are combining voice and video to bring customers real-time assistance from live agents as opposed to virtual ones.

Is there a Finovate alum we left out? If you’re an alum with interesting innovations in the field of voice banking, send us an email at, and tell us all about it.

Finovate Debuts: SayPay Combines Voice Recognition and Biometric Authentication

Finovate Debuts: SayPay Combines Voice Recognition and Biometric Authentication


SayPay Technologies uses biometric authentication to give users an easy way to pay bills, check out online, and log into their online banking website.


  • Headquartered in Pleasanton, California
  • Founded in February 2014
  • Millions of production users in 40+ countries
  • Functions in English, Spanish, and Mandarin

At FinovateSpring 2015, the Pleasanton, Calif.-based startup announced a partnership with VoiceVault to leverage the biometric company’s ViGo product for voice authentication.

SayPay Technologies founder Steve Hoffman gave a personal demo of SayPay at FinovateSpring 2015 in San Jose

How it works
SayPay offers voice-based authentication for three main use-cases: bill pay, e-commerce checkout, and online banking login. For all use cases, SayPay identifies the user’s phone, authenticates their voice, and provides authorization for the interaction.

SayPay authentication works on more mobile devices than a fingerprint, which requires the user to have a fingerprint scanner on their device.

Use cases

1) Bill pay

After financial institutions integrate SayPay’s white-labeled API into their mobile banking app, clients receive push notifications on their phone to alert them when a bill is due.

Upon opening the push notification, the user views the bill within the bank’s app. At that point, they either set a reminder, pay the bill, or schedule a payment.

When ready to pay the bill, the customer is shown an 8-digit numerical code, unique for each transaction, and which expires if not used. After the client speaks the code, SayPay verifies the code and simultaneously authenticates the voice.


To finalize and schedule the payment, the user selects Confirm and views the receipt. The simple user experience improves cash flow for billers because they receive payment more quickly.

2) E-commerce checkout authentication
Just like SayPay for bill pay, the e-commerce checkout technology authenticates users by sending them a unique code for each transaction, then has them voice the code into their phone.

When shopping at an online merchant that uses SayPay, the customer enters their phone number or SayPay ID into the SayPay option, then selects Request Code.


There is no password needed to complete the transaction. The customer simply speaks the one-time code they were presented with on the checkout screen, selects Confirm Purchase, and the transaction is complete.


According to Steve Hoffman, SayPay CEO, 64% of all online-initiated checkouts end in abandonment. SayPay reduces this statistic by eliminating data entry, thereby streamlining/hastening the process, especially important for mobile consumers.

3) Online banking login
Financial institutions can use SayPay across the enterprise: from ACH and P2P payments, to online login and step-up authentication, and bill pay.


Using SayPay as an online banking-login solution, banks offer an improved customer experience with enhanced security.

In lieu of entering traditional online banking log-in credentials, a user simply enters his or her SayPay ID and reads out loud the 8-digit code shown on the mobile device. Once authenticated, SayPay logs the user into the online bank account.



Because SayPay relies on biometrics, it has inherent three-factor authentication. The three factors include the user’s phone, the SayPay code, and the user’s voice. The startup uses 256-bit encryption and never stores personal information on the user’s device.

Additionally, e-commerce and online banking login interactions are out-of-band when customers use SayPay on their laptop.

International Growth
SayPay sees opportunity in the Asia Pacific market, specifically Hong Kong, and is considering international expansion in that direction.

Expansion into more biometrics
As the quality of voice biometrics technology continues to improve, SayPay expects other biometrics to follow the same quality growth curve. For this reason, it hopes to adopt new biometric solutions as they become mainstream. While SayPay has launched with the VoiceVault partnership, it hopes to license its technology to other biometric service providers to plug in other biometric solutions.

Farther in the future, the company plans to expand by offering its API to vendors in different verticals such as healthcare. It also plans to move into wearables, once adoption picks up.

SayPay launched its bill pay and web sign-in offerings at FinovateSpring 2015 in San Jose.

Finovate Alumni News


  • Finovate Debuts: SayPay Combines Voice Recognition and Biometric Authentication

Around the web

  • ColoradoBiz talks with Entrepreneur of the Year finalist: Krista Morgan, CEO and co-founder of P2Binvestor.
  • TechCrunch column on bitcoin and the remittance market references Coinbase and TransferWise.
  • highlights OnDeck, Lending Club, and Prosper in its look at the changing relationship between banks and alternative lenders.
  • Business Insider: SocietyOne thinks Australia is big enough for a bunch of small players.
  • TradeHero parent partners with the Singapore Exchange (SGX) to launch the SGX StockWhiz 2015 contest.
  • Bitbond, Wealthfront, and TrueAccord listed among six rising fintech startups.
  • Lendio-powered Staples business loans surpasses $1 million in funding for 43 SMBs across the U.S.
  • Quisk short-listed for Red Herring’s Top 100 North America award.
  • Fox Financial Planning Network picks Jemstep’s Advisor Pro as automated investment service platform for its AdvisorTouch Symphony program.
  • The Hanover Insurance Group teams up with Identity Theft 911 to provide businesses with better defense against data breaches.
  • reviews small business lender, EZBOB.
  • etcAndroid spotlights Toshl Finance Budget and Expense app 1.7.21.
  • FundSERV to integrate e-SignLive from Silanis into its eDOCS solution.
  • Mitek to acquire IDchecker, a global identity verification solutions provider.
  • Oink featured in USA Today’s list of five financial musts for college grads.
  • Accredited Investor Markets interviews DarcMatter CEO Sang Lee.
  • Kabbage partners with Sage payment solutions to launch Sage small business loan powered by Kabbage.

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.

With SayPay, Consumers Speak a Code to Pay Bills

This post is part of our live coverage of FinovateSpring 2015.

SayPayLogoSayPay announced a partnership with VoiceVault and introduced its bill pay and secure web sign-in:

When billers include a one-time “SayPay code” on their bills, customers simply speak the code into their mobile banking app without needing to sign in! SayPay biometrically authenticates the customer’s voice, matches the code to the bill, and displays the bill details. Upon review, the customer simply presses “Pay.” SayPay also works for ecommerce checkout, website sign in, P2P payments, step-up authentication, and more. The SayPay code is cryptographically calculated so it can’t be predicted, replicated, reused, or replayed. Further, SayPay uses out-of-band and three-factor authentication and never provides sensitive financial information.

Presenters: Steve Hoffman, CEO and founder; Julia Webb, technology consultant

Product Launch: May 2015

Product distribution strategy: Direct to Business (B2B), through financial institutions, through other fintech companies and platforms, licensed

HQ: Pleasanton, California
Founded: February 2014
Twitter: @saypaytech

FinovateSpring 2015 Sneak Peek: Part 1

FinovateSpring 2015 Sneak Peek: Part 1


FinovateSpring 2015 launches next month on May 12 and 13. That gives us five weeks to review the 72 companies that will step up on stage in San Jose.


We’ll be featuring seven companies twice a week in our Sneak Peek series. The first set includes:

This will be Finovate’s eighth conference in the Bay Area and our second year in San Jose. Interested in being among the first to see the newest fintech this spring? Pick up your ticket here to join us.

AlphaPaymentsCloudLogoAlpha Payments Cloud’s AlphaHub consolidates the payments world onto one platform enabling banks, merchants, MSPs and ISOs to access any payment type, any solution provider, anywhere.


  • Access every transaction-centric solution vendor
  • Consolidate all integrations to one platform
  • Mitigate risks and costs by orchestrating across vendor functionality

Why it’s great
AlphaCloudPresenter1The AlphaHub gives instant access to any payment type, any solution provider, anywhere in the world.

Presenter: Oliver Rajic, CEO
Rajic is a global business development leader and payments expert whose vision is bringing the payments world into the 21st century.

CUneXusLogoCUneXus is one of just ten to watch on KPMG’s report of “The Best Fintech Innovators of 2014,.” CUneXus stands at the forefront of the transition to a new era of data-driven, on-demand lending and borrowing.


  • Perpetual Loan Approval
  • “One-Click” access to preapproved loans at every touchpoint
  • Integrated into leading online- and mobile-banking platforms

Why it’s great
CUneXus brings the “one-click” convenience and mobility consumers have come to expect, helping lenders maximize the value and profitability of existing customer relationships.CUnexusPresenter1


Dave Buerger, Co-Founder, President & CEO
Buerger is an award-winning financial services marketer and strategist with a noteworthy record of achievement, spanning a diverse array of marketing mediums and industry verticals.

Darin Chong, Co-Founder & COO
Chong draws from 17+ years of experience in consumer financial services with expertise in marketing, operations, and project management.

DraftLogoDRAFT changes the way people view, think and act about investing by comparing your returns, fees and allocation to top-performing portfolios.


  • Track all of your investments in one spot
  • Side by side return, fee, and allocation comparisons
  • Obtain a blueprint showing portfolio gaps to help maximize returns and lower fees

Why it’s great
DRAFT has created a better investment benchmark by comparing real portfolios to one another. It’s simple, transparent, and community focused.DRAFTPresenter1


Brad Lawler, President, co-founder
Lawler has 10 years’ experience in the financial services industry, including as a high-net-worth adviser at a risk-analysis software firm. He also spent time with a big-data infrastructure company.

Jason St. Peter, CEO, co-founder
St. Peter has 15 years of experience in sales, marketing, and business development in the high-tech industry. Prior to DRAFT, St. Peter created and ran the Dell For Entrepreneurs program for Dell, Inc.

FundAmericaLogoFundAmerica provides API-enabled escrow, payment processing, and securities compliance to portals engaged in technology-driven capital formation via the JOBS Act (506b/c, Reg A+, 4(a)(6) crowdfunding).


  • Easy-to-implement API and “Invest Now” buttons
  • View all data and events in the control panel
  • Ensure compliance with federal and state regulations

Why it’s great
FundAmerica provides the crowdfunding industry with the best and only technology-integrated compliance and back-office solution.


Scott Purcell, CEO, founder
Purcell is a leader in the crowdfunding industry with experience in both technology and securities.

FundAmericaPresenter2Jonathan Self, President, CCO
Self-served as a compliance examiner at FINRA, and was a capital markets specialist at the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.

Scott Andersen, General Counsel
Andersen was the deputy chief counsel at FINRA; enforcement director at the NYSE; and assistant attorney general for the state of New York.

SayPayLogoSayPay enables users to make or schedule bill payments instantly by simply speaking a one-time, secure “SayPay Code”—all without the need to sign in or remember passwords!


  • Eliminates late charges and interest expense
  • Billers get paid faster
  • Combines voice recognition, biometric voice authentication and mobile technologies into a seamless user experience

Why it’s great
SayPayPresenter1Financial institutions can re-use SayPay across the enterprise, for website sign-in, online purchases, P2P transfers, step-up authentication and more for optimal return on investment.


Steve Hoffman, CEO, founder
Hoffman has 25+ years of experience in payments, digital banking, and authentication, and holds several patents for internet and mobile payment technologies.

StockviewsLogoStockViews is an online equity research platform that connects investors with independent analysts.


  • A meritocratic platform that pinpoints alpha generators
  • Identifies analysts with expertise relevant to the fund manager
  • Harnesses the wisdom of crowds to assist investment decisions

Why it’s great
Our product harnesses collective intelligence by identifying and isolating the opinions of analysts who consistently outperform the market.


Tom Beevers, CEO, co-founder
Beevers is the CEO of StockViews. He was previously a fund manager at Newton in London. He holds a degree in natural sciences from Cambridge.

TrueAccordLogoTrueAccord offers a machine-learning-based, automated, and friendly collection platform that effectively services the new age of financial services companies.


  • Adapts to consumer preference with new communication channels; increases satisfaction
  • Adapts to consumer behavior; increases recovery
  • Easy to audit and control; improves compliance

Why it’s great
Debt collection is ripe for disruption on the heels of alternative lending. TrueAccord is leading the market in rethinking this activity.


Ohad Samet, CEO
Samet is head of analytics at Fraud Sciences; worked in new ventures at PayPal; founder at Analyzd; chief risk officer at Klarna; published writer, O’Reilly.

SametIMG2Nadav Samet, CTO
Samet served as a senior software engineer at Google and contributed to several high-profile projects such as gmail, Google Flights, and more. Holds a masters in science in mathematics from Weizmann Institute of Science.