Video interview with Finovate founder Jim Bruene on financial innovation

After two full days of product and technology demos, quite frankly, we were overwhelmed. Payments, personal financial management, gameification, mobile, millennials, robo-advisors, crowdsourcing– and crowdfunding– just a dizzying array of strategies that banks and financial institutions can use to differentiate. How to make sense of it all?

We turned to Finovate founder Jim Bruene for his take. After all, we estimated that Jim has now seen over 1,400 tech demos from 20 Finovate shows, taking place in New York, Silicon Valley, San Francisco, Singapore, and London.

Just one problem. We know that Jim just doesn’t do on-camera interviews. He told us he has turned down TV interview requests, preferring to comment over the phone. Imagine our surprise when he said “Yes!” to our request to talk about Finovate Fall 2014.

In this short video interview, Steven Ramirez, CEO of Beyond the Arc, picks Jim’s brain on technology, innovation, and what it ultimately means for customers.

 

 

Finovate 2014 - the final chapter

This is our last post of the 2-day conference with about 10 more companies presenting.

FamDoo    Mark Lacek (CEO & Co-Founder, FamDoo) and Michele Landis (VP Business Development)  Mark’s experience is in creating and managing loyalty programs. Family-focused product, with an under-10 year old co-founder. This rewards program replaces the typical kid allowance, with the goal of promoting saving behaviors. “The modern allowance”. ^SR

US BANK and their customers are their first loyalty partners. Users can convert FamDoo points to real cents for savings. “Reward work.” Assign tasks to kids/family members where they can gain points that can be converted to currency (I would imagine). Now showing iPad version. Very cool. ^WM

Sr. Pago    Pablo Gonzalez Vargas (CEO & Co-Founder)  Currently addressing 78 million unbanked in Mexico, including small business owners. Debit card without a bank account or tax ID. It isn’t immediately clear what makes this offering unique. A bundle of card, card reader, and mobile app for card system. ^SR

From BIC: The solutions is aimed at the unbanked market. It allows users to accept credit card payments using their smartphone or tablet. They have raised more than million in VC (they are based in Mexico City) but are looking for other partners and investors. ^WM

LOYAL3    Barry Schneider (CEO & Chairman) and Matt Gidney (VP Corporate Marketing & Business Development) Most Americans don’t have brokerage accounts. As an alternative, Loyal3 is a crowdfunding platform for capital markets. People can invest as little as $10 in the brands they love. One of their offerings is a “social IPO” and they helped raise $1.3 mil in 32 minutes. This enables very small investors to invest in companies. They are a scalable platform, that is fully-sclable. The website has a video testimonial from CEO of GoPro. A lot of people got a chance to participate in the IPO. ^SR

Easy, affordable and FEE free for capital markets. It looks like they are getting ready to show an IOS app. Should be App Store next month. Very easy to view. How can folks invest w/o fees? They are showing brands (like Kraft) and people can invest as little as . I really like their concept. I want to know how they make money with their app/platform. “not about buying stock, but becoming an owner of a company”. I like it. They are getting ready to show their social IPO i.e. GoPro. Man, I wish I had invested with GoPro when they went public and I had the chance (I’m glad I did not invest in Vonage many years ago). The have done six IPO’s I BELIEVE were social media-based. This is very cool. Raised .6 million in 32 minutes for one IPO. Now showing a video testimonial on LOYAL3 from GoPro’s CEO. Very cool. Raised million within days with GoPro. They might be a BEST OF SHOW winner. ^WM

MoneyStream    Mike Bertrand (CEO) and Gillian Verga (VP Product)  A personal financial assistant to make managing your money easier. The platform creates the budget for the customer, based on advanced data analysis. Very easy to swap bill payments between credit cards, really at the click of a button. In addition to reporting and analysis, it has integrated bill presentment and payment. ^SR

“PFM’s just didn’t work for me and my family. That’s why I started MoneyStream.” Here is an excerpt from their blog. It was a big surprise to hear last Friday that Manilla is closing its doors effective July 1st. And since we’re very familiar with the pain consumers have trying to get their money organized, we’re deeply sympathetic to the frustration Manilla users must feel, after working to get their bills and accounts set up only… It seems like it was only a year ago Manilla was presenting at Finovate. Times change. ^WM

Linqto    Dune Thomas (VP Mobile Banking Solutions) and Bill Sarris (CEO)  Remote capture of a check, during a live video call with a banker. Location information is delivered to the banker. Video chat with the customer represents a huge potential for improving customer experience. You can see the banker, and both people can communicate non-verbally as well. PersonalBanker+ Linqto powers online video seminars that can be delivered over mobile. Also integrates text chat. “Remote banking, done fact-to-face.” ^SR

“50% of all banking customers do not want to bank online” I’m not sure I’ve heard that but I believe it. Now showing video banking BUT here is the twist; it’s on his phone not at a self service terminal. The call center person knew the customer is in NYC due to geo location. Showed a check capture and now the CSR is showing the teller screen. ^WM

SignLive by Silanis – Tommy Petrogiannis (CEO & Co-Founder) and TJ Witte (Sr. Technical Consultant) From BIC: Silanis Technology is the leading provider of electronic signature process management solutions. The world’s largest insurance providers, financial services companies and government agencies depend on Silanis to reduce the time, cost and risks of getting signatures in critical business documents. Silanis enterprise platform solutions and cloud services enable organizations to replace their manual, pen and paper processes with an all-electronic web-based process for e-commerce and e-government transactions.

I think I’ve seen these folks at mortgage industry events or perhaps at ESRA. Very nice e-sign capture platform. They are a big player in this space. This is their first Finovate. I believe their HQ is in Montreal. ^WM

Backbase    Peter Chapman (Fintech Strategist) and Jelmer de Jong (Global Head of Marketing) Today they are launching the mobile banking marketplace with Widgets that include several companies from Finovate: MoneyDesktop, Geezo, and others. Mix-and-match the best of breed of bank functionality. The marketplace allows you to easily implement technologies from fintech leaders, without having to work with each on a one-off basis. They offer one unified customer experience across a number of different providers. Backbase is known for their strong web design, including very simple, elegant mobile UIs. On Apple iOS, they can use native Apple device functionality.  The Widgets run on any screen, any device. ^SR

I’m sure I’ve seen them before, perhaps at Finovate. I’ve noticed a lot of folks are no longer saying mobile banking, it’s “digital banking.” Now showing a web browser view of their platform which is widget-based which makes a lot of sense. It almost looks like an application. From their web site: ABN AMRO uses Backbase CXP as their enterprise portal, both employee and customer facing…

It would not surprise me if it was originally developed for ABN AMRO. Summary: Backbase is a software company, founded in the Netherlands in 2003, which has offices in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, New York, United States, Moscow, Russia and Singapore.

Now this is interesting. They are showing tech partner logos like MoneyDesktop (now MX), ensenta, Geezeo and Payveris (where my friend Mickey Goldwasser works). I’m interested in how many US FI’s use Backbse. Now show IOS version. Very cool. ^WM

EyeLock    Anthony Antolino (Chief Marketing & Business Development Officer) and Jeff Carter (CTO)  It is an iris-scanner that unlocks all of your passwords. “Scans over 240 points on the iris of each eye.” It seems to me this would work well with Google Glass, if you had a front-facing camera.  “We are privacy advocates.” They see themselves as a player in the internet of things (IoT). ^SR

Irish based authentication company. Now showing video that highlights their television and other press coverage I think much from the CES show. Facial recognition. Walt Mossberg seems to like it.

Guys, I think what you have created is great BUT I don’t think what you are about to read. Your corporate video was more about how much press coverage you have received as opposed to a demo of your system. I would rather have seen more examples of your product in use as opposed to how much press coverage you have received. Kudos to you and your PR team.

There are 2 minutes left and NOW we are just starting to see your demo. This is what we came here to see and I hope to see you here next year. ^WM

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Thank you!  It has been two long days, over 70 companies, and a ton of insights about financial technology! We’ll post later when we learn the Best of Show winners!

Financial technology and innovation - live from New York

This is one in a series of posts live from Finovate Fall 2014. We’re seeing great demos of new technology in mobile, risk/fraud detection, small business lending, and Big Data. We’re in the home stretch with about 20 more companies to to come. ^SR

CR2    Kieran Kilcullen (Director, Sales & Marketing) and Patrick Simons (Principal Consultant) CR2 has an omni-channel platform for self-service banking and have now added mobile. The channels include ATM, mobile, online — all for a fairly seamless experience. It works with the bank’s existing channels. You can also send money, that a friend can retrieve from an ATM. Cool! ^SR

’ve seen these folks before and believe they have a pretty good offering. Now showing a “Dublin Bank” mobile banking app that LOOKS like a Windows Mobile app but I’m pretty sure it’s on IOS. Lots of “tiles”, which I think will be more popular as Windows 8 becomes in wider use. ^WM

SAS Games    Siobhan Mullen (CEO) and Stephen Scully (President)    It is a game-a-thon for college savings; it helps families to focus on saving for college. Saving is done in the name of the youth. They have a game engine and a number of kids-focused marketing promotions. Game-a-thon is like a walk-a-thon, and the games are educational, kids make progress in the game and get sponsored by friends and family. FIs can partner with SAS Games and the game can be named after the bank that sponsors a particular game. They are looking for a bank to sponsor the money transfers, into the savings accounts. Hmmm, that might be an issue if they are still looking for an official bank. ^SR

“Game-A-Thon” for college savings. Marketing tool for commercial and personal banking. I don’t recall seeing this company before. From BIC: Fully automated, easy-to-use, market-disrupting, patent-pending, activity-based fundraising tool for children’s college savings.

I have the pleasure of serving on Florida State’s College of Communication & Information Leadership Board and every year the total cost of higher education continues to skyrocket. In many cases it’s not the tuition; it’s the housing and other costs.

In Atlanta, the AVERAGE cost for an underclassman to attend Emory University is almost ,000 PER YEAR. I applaud what these folks are doing. It’s a game engine connected to social/mobile networks. “The best indicator whether someone will attend college is the amount of money saved in the student’s name, not the wealth of the student’s family”. Interesting information. It’s kind of like Kickstarter within a family network to help children attend higher education. ^WM

NopSec   Michelangelo Sidagni (CTO)  They use data science and analytics for vulnerability to internet hacks and attacks. They also have a platform for managing remediation, identifying what you need to fix on the website. Has a built-in collaboration tool to fix problems that cross silos. They also use predictive analytics. ^SR

From BIC: NopSec helps businesses to reduce the risk of cyber-attacks by managing the IT security vulnerabilities that matter most. We holistically manage IT security vulnerabilities for applications and infrastructure, on premises and in the cloud. NopSec’s software-as-a-service, Unified VRM, aggregates the results of vulnerability scanners, proactively prioritizes vulnerabilities based on business risk, and expedites remediation by automating the ticketing process and reports. I’m struggling to ascertain exactly what they do. I’m thinking it’s a platform for machine management to prevent fraud/malware. Perhaps this is something that Home Depot or Target should have used. I will have to learn more about these folks. URL: www.nopsec.com. NopSec: vulnerability risk management, vulnerability scanning, and penetration testing solutions.^WM

Kapitall    Gaspard De Dreuzy (Co-Founder) and Antonio Reyes (Head of Development)  An online platform for an investment-based tournament, sort of like fantasy football meets Wall Street. Investors find and trade stocks in the DJ Index. This is an interesting idea, but not sure I understand the audience. ^SR

More information from their web site: About Kapitall, Inc.
With an intuitive and playful user experience, Kapitall is the next generation investing platform where modern investors can learn about the market, research stocks and funds, share investing ideas, and build virtual and real brokerage portfolios. Interacting with company stocks is as easy as drag, drop and trade?. Founded in 2008 by video game entrepreneur Gaspard de Dreuzy and financial technologist Serge Kreiker, Kapitall uses the gaming experience to break the established online trading mold, as the leading investing platform for emerging investors. Jarrett Lilien, former E*TRADE President and COO, joined the team as CEO in 2012.

This is the “gamefication” of trading/investing. I suspected they are well-capitalized and found out that they have raised more than million in VC. ^WM

Minetta Brook – Deepak Bharadwaj (CEO & Founder) and Viplav Nigam (VP Engineering) “Big data Intelligence” Realtime Computational Linguistics Technology.  Today, announcing knewsapp for the first 100 users. Interesting use of news analysis and how to value the coverage to be of value to investors. Now showing the stocks where Soros is an investor and if any are getting more coverage in news, Twitter or blogs. I think this is pretty cool and have asked to be a beta user of their product KnewsApp. Web-based and I think mobile versions are available. ^WM

Geezeo – Shawn Ward (CEO) and Peter Glyman (President) “Engagement Banking” “I was the first presenter at the first Finovate” I was there I think I remember their presentation. That was a LONG time ago. Showing IOS app, I think new, SMB cash flow management. From BIC: Geezeo helps organizations engage their base, reach new markets, and increase wallet share. More than 300 financial institutions leverage Geezeo’s PFM platform. Geezeo’s primary focus is to provide services and technologies that enable clients to engage their target audiences to make sound financial decisions around products your financial institution offers. ^WM

Anchor ID – David Schropfer (CEO) From BIC: Anchor ID, Inc. is a digital identity company that allows consumers to use one universal login, combined with smartphone authentication, to access sites across the web. From social networks to entertainment sites, online banking to ecommerce, using Anchor ID, consumers no longer have to remember multiple logins and passwords to securely transact on the web. Headquartered in New York, Anchor ID raised seed capital in January 2014 and will launch in the fall of 2014

“We have been live for two days.” It is authentification technology and gives at least five different choices for authentification: voice, PIN, AppleTouchID, location, etc. Pretty cool and looks flexible. ^WM

Powerlytics    Kevin Sheetz (CEO & Co-Founder) and Pat Brown (Sr. Director, Stategic Sales)  They use Big Data for better investment strategy. Allows FIs to use their data, and combine it with the organization’s own. Benchmark and other interactive reports helps you to explore the data. They also have products for consumers. They also are looking for strategic partners. ^SR

“Powerful data, smarter decisions.” From BIC: Powerlytics’ market intelligence platform provides the most comprehensive, accurate and granular consumer and business financial data available. Underpinned by the financial statements of 27 million business and 144 million households, Powerlytics’ platform and products allow for unprecedented insights to understand risk, identify market opportunities and conduct predicative analytics, analysis and research with a degree of precession that turns insights into action. Launching new product that parallels a lending workbench. Small business lending strategy platform. It looks pretty powerful; I’m not sure where they get their data. Kevin was at KPMG for 17 years and was a partner and later had successful stints at Unisys and other tech companies before starting Powerlytics. ^WM

Algomi    Stu Taylor (CEO) and Usman Khan (CTO)  They use social networks for investment managers and insurance companies. They connect bond buyers and sellers, and many bonds don’t trade very frequently. Which global bank can connect me to the right bond seller, without telegraphing this info to the entire market? Honeycomb platform mines bond trading data to identify likely sellers (or buyers, depending on which end of the deal you’re on).  Billions of dollars of transactions on their platform. ^SR

95 FTE’s with offices in London and New York. Social networking “take” for investment trading. JPMC is a client. “We run the Honeycomb Network.” Showing screen of bonds that look to be the shape of a honeycomb. Their interface is nice and it has a different kind of look and feel. It reminds me of the periodic table in Chemistry class at FSU.

“Bonds only trade a few times a year.” One of the things I like about Finovate Fall is that is in New York City, so we see a lot more international and investment-based technologies that I don’t usually find in the Finovate Spring event in California. ^WM

Finovate Day 2 continues from New York

Our coverage of Finovate continues into Day 2.

Cachet Financial Solutions    Youri Bebic (SVP Mobile Innovations) and Kimberly Timmons (Relationship Manager) Cachet describes themselves as “mobile for the prepaid world.” They aggregate best-in-class services (bill pay, remittance, rewards) and offer it as software as a service (SAAS). They are the first virtual agent of Moneygram. ^SR

I’m sure I’ve see these foks before. Now showing very nice IOS app demo of Cachet’s client MoneyGram. Again, very nice UI. Showing Navy Federal CU app. From our friends at BIC: Cachet Financial Solutions is a leading financial services technology company, specializing in commercial and consumer remote deposit capture (RDC) solutions for financial institutions, credit unions, and financial service organizations. Cachet’s merchant capture solution (for both PC and Mac) and mobile applications provide greater freedom and flexibility for financial institutions and their customers. What’s kind of interesting to me is that I’ve always thought of these folks as more of a remote deposit technology company. Everything I’m seeing now seems to be mobile app payments. Now showing analytics dashboard based on user data.

From their web site:
Cachet Financial Solutions is a leading provider of cloud-based Saas remote deposit capture (RDC) solutions for banks, credit unions and other financial institutions. Remote and mobile deposit technologies are changing business and personal banking forever. And thanks to our leading industry platform, Cachet has simplified the process for delivering, implementing and servicing these remote solutions. ^WM

Hoyos Labs    Hector Hoyos (Founder, Chairman & CEO)    From your mobile phone, they provide facial recognition and retina scan, and logs you in automatically to your account. No usernames, no passwords, no tokens. Launches for consumer use in October. And yes, they do have anti-hack technology (like asking you to raise your eyebrows to make sure you are not a fake picture.) System can tell the difference between live shot of you, and a recorded video. ^SR

Hector is showing the IOS app and the BofA credit card web site and now how it is linked to the mobile app. Using facial recognition for authentication. No user names, passwords, no tokens. “This is the consumer app launching next month for IOS and Android”. Now showing business application/implementation. “BANK OF AMERICAN IS USING THIS”. This is a big deal. B of A doesn’t like to let their vendors publicly speak about how B of A uses apps from bank vendors.

From our friends at BIC: Hoyos Labs is a Digital Infrastructure Security Company devoted to developing highly secured Identity Assertion Platforms capable of authenticating and assuring identities quickly yet accurately. Headquartered in New York City, Hoyos Labs Research and Development Division operates at the various geographies.

Now Hector is trying to “spoof” his own system using a video of himself. As expected, the app rejected the session. Pretty cool. ^WM

Larky    Andrew Bank (Co-Founder) and Gregg Hammerman (Co-Founder)  White-label, merchant- funded, point-of-sale (POS) discounts for consumers. Their aim: drive loyalty and card revenue. The answer is “contextual engagement” with set-it-and-forget-it functionality. My question is if the customer is going to make the purchase anyway, do you really want to offer them a discount?  Perfect use case for predictive analyitcs: let’s just serve up discounts for customers not likely to buy without receiving a discount. ^SR

Larky helps merchants build loyalty programs through their platform. From their web site: “Solutions for Credit unions, banks and health insurers.” Now speaking that most financial products (or at least 1/2) are not from a consumer’s primary FI. Now showing their IOS app but I believe they are launching their Android app today. I know I’m sounding like a broken record but once again, it’s a beautiful interface showing location-based services to show a consumer offer based on location and I assume banking/purchase behavior.

From their company’s blog: Infographic: How Are Millennials Transforming the Banking Industry?

With over 86 million people in the generation known as Millennials (born early 1980?s to early 2000?s), the banking industry is poised to see a major shift in how people want to interact with their financial institutions. LARKY INTELLIGENCE has uncovered some amazing statistics to give you a glimpse into the future.

Now speaking to engaging millennials. This is the FIRST company this event that I can recall that is addressing millenials. ^WM

WingCash    Bradley Wilkes (CEO & President), Steve Curtis (VP & Director, Sales), and Vilash Poovala (CTO)  Cloud-based wallet for gift cards, currency, and “brand cash”. They include US$ currency, waiting to see how that gets funded. Brand Cash is a loyalty currency. The offering is focused on processors and acquirers of merchant accounts.^SR

“Revolutionizing the mobile wallet” Now showing IOS app. Speaking to the challenge of carrying all our credit/debit/loyalty/gift cards and frustration at the register. Their motto is “Life is Better With Cash”. WingCash carries payment cards, loyalty cards and more. I’m interested in how they make their money and their go-to-market strategy. Focused on processors and the merchant business. ^WM

Behalf    Benjy Feinberg (CEO) and Andrew Abshere (Director, Product)  Financing for small busines customers – they pay the vendors on behalf of the company. This helps SMBs to manage their cash flow; Behalf pays the vendor, and provides repayment terms.  I see the appeal of this offering and it takes some of the hassle out of vendor management. ^SR

Again, another company that provides small business financing. Like I wrote earlier, this category is HOT. There must be a huge need as so many folks are here showing solutions in this area. Again, I it is my belief that Behalf and other organizations like it leverage 21st century technology to get cash to SMB’s in a way that is just not practical for traditional FI’s. Now showing web-based front end for the borrower. ^WM

Rippleshot    Randal Cox (Co-Founder & Chief Scientist) and Lucas Ward (CTO & Co-Founder)  They offer enhanced detection for fraud and data breaches. Interactive dashboards help to pinpoint vulnerable merchants, compromised cards, and more. They offer their service via PCI-compliant cloud, can provide time/location of every breach, and can quickly identify both large and emerging breaches. This is an important service given increasing exposure to merchants for data breaches. ^SR

Knox Payments    Thomas Nicholas (President & Co-Founder)  Easy to sign up for a merchant account, online and in minutes. Funding accounts is also very straightforward. ^SR

From our friends at BIC: Knox adds an additional layer of security on top of users’ online banking, and allows merchants and other users to make payments to and from bank accounts online for $CONTENT.18/ transaction, without the “middlemen’ of Visa or MasterCard. Now showing web app for a new account setup. New account opening technology is HOT. uMonitor sold to Harland FS (now D+H) and Andera recently sold for a TON of money (Kudo’s to Charlie on that). Knox Payments is now showing how fast to set up the account and then trade on a platform such as FOREX. “We are the only alternative to the credit card networks to underwrite transactions at a much lower cost.”

Thinknum    Justin Zhen (Co-Founder)  This is a web platform for financial analysis; most financial analysts are not computer programmers. The UI looks like Google Docs, with a web-based spreadsheet. They’ve added functions that make it easier to do financial analysis, like grabbing data automatically from 10K reports. Also moves the computing power off your desktop, and over to the compute power of their cloud servers. ^SR

Showing Thinknum’s technology creating Excel data. I’m not quite sure of the Unique Value Proposition so I will have to do more reach on the company. From their web site: A powerful web platform for financial analysis. Our Cashflow Model engine helps you value companies like a genius. I think it’s interesting technology and a fine company but I’m noticing a trend. It seems like 1/2 of all FINTECH companies use the same template for their home pages of their web sites. Perhaps it’s a WordPress template. Again, I think this is pretty powerful technology for those who need this kind of data and presentation. ^WM

Malauzai Software    Robb Gaynor (Chief Product Officer & Founder) and Danny Piangerelli (CTO) They build custom apps for community banks, with an emphasis on next generation of mobile. “Apps running on the desktop.” I like this — really starts to bring a “mobile, first” philosophy to market. Large banks are far along this road, Malauzai Software looks like they are helping community banks with this challenge. Nice drag-and-drop functionality for the desktop. ^SR

Malauzai Full disclosure: William Mills Agency provides public relations for Malauzai Software. From their web site: “Cool SmartApps, Easily Managed and Easily Measured.”

Based in Austin, Texas,  Malauzai is one of the rare companies I know that have clear, concise vision coupled with smart, experienced talent with one of the best work environments. I believe this is the FIRST time the company is presenting here but Malauzai technology has been a major part of at least TWO other Finovate demos over the years. “We serve over 300 FI’s around the United States. We create smart apps and end users have a much better experience. Internet banking as you know it is DEAD!” Lots of users are demanding a better experience, especially for tablets and desktops.  “Smart phones are where we started.” They are now showing their smart web browser experience.

Now Robb is showing their iPad app and it’s REALLY slick with a “carousel” view. What they are showing, which I have NOT seen from other folks (yet), is the mobile experience in a browser environment. “Smart Web Apps driven by same mobile user experience (because it is easy, people know how to use mobile apps intuitively) (paraphrase). One of their real cool functions is the ability to turn debit cards on and off manually using the Malauzai mobile app and know it looks like it will be very popular on tablets and web browsers on a computer. MOX, Convergence and superior economics. I bet they will be a best of show winner if not a strong contender. ^WM

Video recap: financial services technology and innovation from Finovate

We’ve recapped some of the highlights and our observations from Day 1 at Finovate.

Innovation in financial services - Finovate Day 2

We’re back for another marathon of financial technology. Day 1 covered a range of new developments in mobile payments, automated financial advice, and personal financial management. There are several interesting companies lined up for Day 2, and the presentations begin in a few minutes. ^SR

Kabbage  Rob Frohwein (CEO & Co-Founder) and Kathryn Petralia (COO & Co-Founder)  Kabbage provides working capital to small business, with over $400 million in loans. Their new offering is Karrot, a consumer loan product. They note it is the lowest cost loan option on the market. Their demo focuses on debt consolidation. You only need to submit last-4 of social security. It isn’t even a hard inquiry to the credit bureaus until/unless you accept the loan. Your financial information is pulled from your accounts automatically. Approval is within seconds, provided online. They don’t use ACH for money transfer, you link your debit card to your Karrot account for funding. Origination fee is deducted from the accepted loan. Institutional investors are funding the loans on the platform. This service can be provided white-label to banks and FIs. ^SR

This Atlanta-based company has a great reputation. I believe I first saw them at a Finovate several years ago. Loans to SMB market. They put out more than 0 million last year (I believe in lending to SMB’s).  They did launch in May 2010 at Finovate (San Francisco). Announcing “Karrot” “least expensive, fastest loan for consumers.  I’m interested in who will be doing the funding for Karrot. I think of Kabbage of a technology company as opposed to a lender but technology is changing that.  Capitol Access Network, OnDeck, Kabbage seemed to have unlocked the code on better financing using technology. What are FI’s role with Carrot?  Now discussing the problems with ACH (24 -72 hour turnaround) and their solution using payment through debit card exchange for faster funds movement.

One smart thing Kabbage has done is that they announced this PRIOR to today so there is some press coverage of the new product during their presentation. Great kudos to Kabbage and their PR team. ^WM

Sender & PrivatBank    Egor Avetisov (Creative Director) and Maria Gurina (Deputy Head of E-Commerce)  Sender has their client, PrivatBank, up on stage with them. PrivatBank is one of the largest banks in Eastern Europe, and had a great presentation themselves at the last Finovate. Sender offers a chat-based peer-to-peer payment system. Very simple setup on the bank side, as well as easy to use by the customer. Sender is a platform for customer communications and payments. ^SR

Sender.mobi “MC has only one product, a credit card. Each bank needs to create their own online bank.” I’m quite sure what their app does but hopefully we will get to that. I think it’s awesome that they have one of their customers, a large bank with them doing the presentation. They are now showing a chat-based IOS app where the person doing the demo is sending an invoice via the app and the recipient gets the invoice and pays via the app.^WM

Vantiv    Coy Christensen (VP Product Management) with Jesse Kunicki (Development Manager)  Demostrating their TriPOS system.  Vantiv has a tough challenge here. This is more of an infrastructure and pipes play, and I think they haven’t articulated their real value. The demo requires too much knowledge of payment processing. They are talking features, but not really benefits to the bank, to the merchant, or to the consumer. However, EMV is the story of the day in the card industry. They have technology to help companies make the transition to EMV. This is a product for payments developers. ^SR

I met with folks from Vantiv last year at Money2020 and have been tracking them for the past year. In this demo they are showing triPOS (“try pos”) which I think is a merchant solution; perhaps like Square. We will find out but uses the existing PIN device (like VeriFone). I’m not sure what the difference is between triPOS and existing merchant point-of-sale systems. Perhaps it’s an easy way for merchants to be able to EMV certified easily as it only requires one EMV certification. Vantiv, Inc. is a U.S.-based payment processing and technology solutions provider headquartered in the greater Cincinnati, Ohio area. ^WM

CrowdFlower    Tatiana Josephy (VP Product)  Product to clean and complete your Big Data. Data scientists spend 80% of their time cleaning up the data. They provide the person-power to help train machine learning algorithms. Their example is spotting cars in a parking lot, to help train an image recognition application. CrowdFlower can extract data from PDF, manual process to identify the key information. CrowdFlower is vetting who is working on your tasks. This is another competitor to Amazon Mechanical Turk. CrowdFlower’s online workforce analyzes sentiment and purchase intent from social media. For AppleWatch, they analyzed 27,000 tweets for $280.  It isn’t about Big Data, it is more about Rich Data (annotated by people). ^SR

“We collect, clean and label data.” “Rich data, clean and easy to use.” Skybox/Google is a current client and they are showing a demo using Skybox. This is pretty cool. Skybox is a satellite imaging company that collects photos and has scientists to mark/input data based on satellite photos. For example, counting the number of cars in a parking lot to determine how much traffic/business may have.  Another client utilizes Crowdflower to collect data from SEC PDF documents. Their online workforce combs through SEC filings to collect the data. I’m guessing that CrowdFlower utilizes a paid crowdsourcing work force so people can work when they want for as long as they work (as opposed to outsourcing). I REALLY like what these folks are doing. Last example, one customer uses Twitter data to predict stock prices. CrowdFlower helped this company analyze Twitter data on whether the Apple Watch will be successful. In 24 hours 1,400 people in their workforce studied thousands of Tweets for a cost of 0. That is amazing to me. I can see big thing for these folks. It’s a fast, easy, low-cost solution that takes big data to rich (usable) data. I’m impressed and think they might be a “Best of Show” winner. ^WM

BioCatch    Uri Rivner (Co-Founder & VP, Business Development & Cyber Strategy)  They are trying to reduce customer “friction” from cumbersome fraud and authentication, by use of biometrics. Their example shows the onscreen pattern when you swipe your device. It tracks how you respond to the application. People actually are consistent, and the way they physically handle the device is unique. You can establish a baseline based on these user behaviors, and use this to detect fraudulent users. They also look at how you use the mouse, do you use the tab keys, do you click or hit “submit” to enter, do you use cut/paste, etc. Biometrics are really taking on a new character, with very different ways to analyze customer behavior. ^SR

Showing an iPad based application. Studies how a user is interacting with a mobile banking application, I’m assuming for authentification. Perhaps the platform might provide an ability to cross-sell or create offers based on the movement of a smart phone. I heard a presentation from an ex-RSA last month on authentication via a person’s movement so I think this is very cutting edge. Even is you have someone’s mobile phone, their email, password, bank account information and all passwords it is impossible (for now) to mimic someones unique movements: how they walk, hold their mobile phones, height and more. Very complex and interesting. ^WM

Ayasdi    Michael Woods (Principal Data Strategist) and Max Song (Data Scientist)  This is a data science company that has commercialized techniques developed by DARPA. In financial services, they are looking at predictive models and customer intelligence. They have a data visualization platform, but it is not ready for primetime. This sounds like a data science lecture, not a discussion of innovation. (Not that I’m complaining!  But they’ve completely lost the audience.) The finding: low FICO scores had higher risk of bankruptcy.  Wow, hope the client didn’t have to pay for that!     ^SR

Now showing very cool data helix, much like human DNA. Boy, this is VERY cool but way over my head. Color coded by FICO score. These are smart folks. It almost looks like like something out of “The Matrix”. Now showing how an FI would use the helix. I’ll try to upload a photo. Very interesting. ^WM

Financeit & FIS    Michael Garrity (CEO)

I was meeting with one of FinanceIT’s investors last week and I am really looking forward to their demo today. Katie from FIS is speaking today. FIS is led by a great guy, Frank Martire and they have acquired a TON of financial technology companies.

Launching FinanceIT product to US market today. Four years of operation in Canada. “POS Financing Platform”: We Offer Financing Everywhere.” Showing a demo of a merchant that uses FinanceIT. About FinanceIT from the TTC Capital web site: Financeit is a platform that makes it easy for businesses to boost sales by offering consumer financing to their customers from any device. The company brings point of sale financing tools to main street merchants to increase close rates and transaction size – a proven strategy previously reserved for big box retailers. Since launching in 2011, Financeit has signed up over 2,800 retail, vehicle, home improvement and healthcare businesses who have processed more than 0 million in loans.

Now showing the browser-based merchant dashboard and a customer is now at the merchant making the transaction and showing monthly payment and schedule, loan documentation and it looks like it is on-the-fly loan agreement based on geography and regulations using an e-signature. Very slick.^WM

Yodlee    John Bird (Product Marketing, Yodlee), Jon Petz (Product Evangelist, Yodlee)  and Avi Lele (CEO, Stockpile)  Yodleee presenting the frequent tension between developers and bankers; Yodlee helps to bridge the gap by aggregating bank data and exposing it to developers via robust APIs. Yodlee is uniquely positioned to serve both developers and banks. The developer panel makes working with the platform simple. Yodlee is having fun with their demo, I like the “Jekyll and Hyde”-inspired character who melds the hoodie-wearing coder and the straight-laced banker. Where’d you guys get that costume? ^SR

I’ve know Yodlee since the “dot com” days besides being a survivor they now seem to dominate as the personal finance data provider in this part of of the financial industry. I bet 50+ companies use Yodlee’s data to drive the front end screens of their apps. I believe they are on a “road show” and I expect an IPO from Yodlee some time this year. From BIC: Financial management platform that uses data analytics to provide financial insights to users. Platform components include data aggregation, Money Movement. ^WM

Matchi    David Milligan (CEO, Matchi) and Warren Bond (Co-Founder, Matchi)  Matchi is a matchmaking service for member banks and innovators. The platform enables banks to create “challenges” that go out to fintech entrepreneurs. For banks, it is a way to grow and find innovations in your areas of interest. ^SR

We need to move beyond where we are on a continuous basis. That’s what Matchi does.” Co-presenter is from KPMG. Their url is www.Matchi.biz. 30 banks have signed up (I haven’t heard a US bank yet, International so far.)

From their web site.
How does it work?

Founded by people with years of experience in selling into the banking world, Matchi is an Innovation Matchmaking platform that brings banks and innovators together. Co-designed with leading banks, Matchi showcases a collection of market-ready solutions for many of the challenges that impact delivery to your clients.

I’m not familiar with this organization or their market category so I will need to learn more. It was wise for them to bring KPMG with them as a part of their presentation today. “Rippleshot signed up with us and we have introduced them to several FI’s around the world” (I’m paraphrasing here). Announcing Global FINTECH Innovation challenge hosted by Standard Bank. Winner of this challenge will be flown to South Africa for presentations to at least six major banks. Interesting. Bankers will like it as well as innovative Fintech companies.

Our video blog with an overview of Finovate Fall 2014

Check out our video blog from Day 1 of Finovate

 

 

Technology and innovation for banks - Finovate Day 1 continues

This is the last set of presentations for this afternoon. We’ve seen some great new features from established fintech companies, plus new entrants that have recently launched. One thing you can tell you from our coverage, there are a dizzying number of companies out there!

Our coverage from today starts here http://beyondthearc.com/blog/2014/customer-experience/fintech_bank_innovation_day1

TickSmith – Francis Wenzel (CEO) and David Côté (CIO)  TickSmith provides a commercial Big Data platform for financial services. Cloud infrastructure that they have built, with API access or web interface. The platform can also manage unstructured text data. There aren’t a lot of details on what sets them apart. This is the first Big Data pitch of the day.  The use cases are interesting, would like to hear more about the tech! ^SR

“Managing six years of FI data” “What does Google do to attack this problem?” Used by hedge funds, brokerage firms and others. Launched in 2013. Showing a browser-based platform. They take in thousands of files a day. To me, it kind of reminds me of Google for stock data whether it is historical data or news. From BIC: This is the first commercial big data platform for financial data that is offered as a cloud-based service. I’m sure for the right person this is a pretty cool product.^WM

mCASH – Daniel Døderlein (CEO & Founder) and Anders Nicolai Bakke (COO)  mCASH is a payments platform for banks. They support a number of different customer use cases, and you don’t need any new hardware with their mobile offering. It uses QR code, and you can scan from the mobile device screen. ^SR

“Pay with ease using your mobile phone in real time.” Merchants in Norway using this technology. I’m not sure if anyone is using this in the United States yet. Free app. Showing IOS app where someone selects the payee and funding source (i.e. credit card).  It SEEMS like sending cash via SMS. By the way, in Kenya 90% of smart phone owners use their mobile phone for P2P payments as well as consumer to merchant payments. I’m wondering if mCash works because it MIGHT be carrier-based. I’m not sure but I’ll find out more. I think they want to reach US banks and credit unions. I suspect via white labeling their app from a FI. 80% merchant penetration in Norway. Announcing new product called mCash mobile merchant; I think like Square but does not require a card reader. Showing a demo using a QR code for a sample merchant payment. ^WM

BCSG – John Davis (Managing Director) and Andrew Garney (Commercial Manager)   The company supports small businesses, and the banks that serve them. “The power to be more productive.”  One service is curating a set of apps for small business (like marketing, accounting, etc.). All of the apps are integrated under a single sign-on. The apps can also share the same assets, like a scanned receipt used in accounting software or stored in a secure online vault. This is a way for banks to provide a value-add to small business customers.  I do agree that it can be hard to shop for the right services for your business, I don’t know if I trust my bank to help me with that challenge. ^SR

“Partners with large FI’s to support SMB’s” Showing a browser-based app that is being using in Europe and will go live with one US bank in the year. I’m not quite sure what they do yet. They are showing business apps for SMB’s on their platform. I’m interested in hearing more as I’m having a hard time figuring out why a SMB would turn to their FI on help on choosing computer applications. Perhaps payroll or payment apps would make sense. Showing live online chat function support. I suspect they can offer lower prices for SAS with bulk buying power. Showing screen of their platform with Santander Bank. ^WM

MaxMyInterest – Gary Zimmerman (CEO & Founder) and Richard Wu (Director, Engineering)  Helps consumers to earn better interest on their cash deposits. The platform moves money between accounts for you, to optimize the interest. They are not an FI, the consumer holds the accounts in their own name. They also make sure you stay below FDIC account insurance limits. Their secret sauce is the algorithm that allocates cash across the accounts. Big Data powers the offering, with simple visualization. This service is built for high-income people with a ton of cash on hand. When you need to transfer money, Max draws the money from the lowest-yielding accounts. They work with 5 top banks, including Bank of America, Wells Fargo, and American Express. ^SR

I could see how this would be of interests to a lot of people, companies and FI’s. I remember an Atlanta-based company but can’t remember the name (CD – something) that called banks daily to identify CD rates/terms for FI’s to move money around as needed to ensure FDIC coverage. This looks like a cash balancing platform designed with a 21st century design. This is the only cash management/interest rate platform that I can recall ever seeing at Finovate. Very cool stuff. I need to learn more about their business model as well who exactly they are selling to and their main reason to buy. One more time, another great looking browser-based financial technology platform. I bet there are a lot more trained artists and user experience experts employed at financial technology companies today. Up until now it was invitation only; now open to everyone. ^WM

Toopher – Josh Alexander (CEO & Co-Founder) and Evan Grim (CTO & Founder)  Toopher has a solution for multi-factor authentication. They emphasize that their technology is invisible, and does not get in the way of the user experience. They now have biometrics. ^SR

Uses location-based information on your mobile phone for authentification. Josh is going so fast it’s hard to keep up with what they do but I think it’s authentication technology based on location. Invisible to the user. Now showing fingerprint ID on a newer Apple phone. Getting ready to show proof of concept with a drone. VERY CREATIVE DEMO. ^WM

SelfScore – Kalpesh Kapadia (CEO & Co-Founder)  The company says credit scores are outdated, don’t predict behavior well, and don’t give good results for millions of people– particularly millennials. Their score includes a wide range of data elelments, including social media profiles. They are compliant with lending regulations. ^SR

From BIC: The app is a measure of users’ potential based on their biography, personality and activity derived from social profiles and questionnaire and provides feedback across various dimensions of life, e.g. social, intellectual, financial.  I believe it is an “offers” platform based on social media networks.

EverSafe – Howard Tischler (CEO & Founder) and Elizabeth Loewy (SVP Industry Relations & General Counsel)   Eversafe helps to protect seniors against financial exploitation and fraud. Desktop application with alerts that are sent via email. ^SR

“Protecting Seniors AgainstFinancial Exploitation”  Boy, this is a big problem: folks exploiting senior citizens out of their savings, stealing from the elderly. The founder started this company because this happened to his own mother. There was an elderly family member in my family that convinced that she had one millions of dollars and all she had to do was to provide her DDA account number and all kinds of personal information. The scam artists used UPS instead of US mail to try to avoid mail fraud charges if ever caught. I think I’ve seen these folks before, perhaps in New York last fall. Using this system sets alerts to family members of suspicious activity that might indicate fraud. ^WM

BlueVine – Eyal Lifshitz (CEO) and Edward Castaño (VP Operations)  With cashflow management for small business, Blue Vine addresses one of the biggest pain points for SMBs. They bring the age-old practice of factoring into the modern era. They evaluate each funding request, no more than 24 hours, and as quick as just a few minutes. They actually set a credit limit for each business customer. ^SR

Finovera – Purna Pareek (CEO) and Amanda Zepeda (Marketing Manager)   Bill Pay can be so much more. With Finovera, it can fuel a PFM solution. They have both desktop and mobile versions.

Financial services innovation: live from Finovate Fall 2014

This is one of a series of articles with live coverage of more than 70 companies presenting at the Finovate conference.

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Zenmonics & Diebold – David Dye (VP Sales, Zenmonics) and Shelly Ewing (Director, New Business & Solution Incubation, Diebold)  Banks can enable self-service transactions within the branch. This helps banks to refocus their branch strategies. This application ties into the bank’s branch  systems; so through a tablet in the lobby, the customer is able to make a wide range of transactions. This solution, with the tie into the branch systems, allows the customer to do more than they would at an ATM. ^SR 

Talking about a NEW type of branch model that leverages existing branch systems. They are showing a video demo. Think this is a JV between Diebold and Zenmonics (for the software) as a full teller experience at a branch using large tablet-like devices and cash dispensers. Now shooing the ID authentication with a real CSR via teleconference. We’ve been seeing “self-service banking” for more than 20 years. I think this type of solution would BEST be used in really low volume branches or areas that a bank would like to serve but can’t afford a full-time branch staff and building.^WM

Check out our newsletter, released today:
http://beyondthearc.com/beyond-the-arc-news-events/beyond-the-arc-newsletters.htm

BizEquity – Michael Carter (CEO) and Semyon Fishman (VP Engineering & Technology)  A business valuation engine to estimate the value of small businesses. In addition to the value, BizEquity now can track and measure the performance of the business. Simple, interactive, visualization with real-time profiles on more than 17 million companies. ^SR 

What’s the business worth? Platform to evaluate how much a company is worth. I think I saw their presentation either last year or last spring and it looks interesting. Michael was doing private equity work and realized there was a need to launch a technology platform for business equity.  Announcing new version of their platform today.  I’m interested in hearing HOW their valuation engine calculates the evaluation. I THINK he said “so far we have pre-value more than 27 million SMB’s” I did a quick test of the system and I didn’t have time to enter all the data but I think it’s VERY cool. I’m assuming they keep the information private. ^WM

Global Debt Registry -  Todd Veale (Chief Marketing & Product Officer) and Charlie Moore (Chief Commercial Officer)  Helping financial institutions manage debt collection, ensuring compliance wherever the debt may live — on the issuers books, or in the secondary markets. Documents the history of the account, and full chain of ownership. They also have addressed the issue of consumer transparency. Consumer can look up the debt, and the debt collector.  ^SR 

“It’s the DMV of consumer debt”. Did I hear that correctly? I might be wrong but this MIGHT be a kind of of Mortgage Electronic Registry Services (I think, also known as MERS) for consumer debt.  This sounds like a really good idea. There is a TON of debt that is charged off and various agencies value and collect the debts. “This industry has been traditionally been offline.” I’d agree with that. Once again, another great browser-based but very graphical presentation of the data. For someone like me I really like how almost all of these companies have really stepped up with their customer experience. It’s like the entire financial technology industry finally realized the value of easy to use dashboards and graphics. I can’t stress enough how much this has changed in the last two years. As I referenced earlier, I call it the “Apple Effect”, business users have now come to EXPECT outstanding visuals whether it is usable icons to excellent presentation of data.  I know of no other organization like Global Debt Registry.  They make money by getting fees for docs from collectors as well as fees from FI’s. I like it. ^WM

P2Binvestor     Gabriella Krista Morgan (President & Co-Founder) and Clay McIlrath (CTO)  They believe that “modern business lending” is enabled by their online portal.  The offering is integrated with QuickBooks, so has a rich store of data on the applicants. They are a crowdfunding model, so also have an investor platform. There is a beta for all Quickbooks online users. ^SR

“Portable, flexible capital loans and call it crowd lending”.  This is a HOT category. There are several technology companies leveraging technology for better short-term lending. I believe she said the data comes from an company’s QUICKBOOKS data.  “We have originated million in loans so far this year.” They are showing the loan app via a Google Chrome browser via the Quickbooks API. Once loan is submitted by the  borrower (probably an SMB) they do the evaluation and do a go/no go response but I wasn’t sure how fast it is. I believe she said this was in beta. I like it and would like to learn more. ^WM

FlexScore  Jason Gordo (CEO) and Jeff Burrow (COO & President)   They provide a “financial success score”, they offer both online and mobile app.  This can be white-labeled for the bank. Consumers can get a quick score, without even having an account established. Mobile app shows consumers how a few small changes today, can have a big impact on your financial goals, and your life. Customized action steps, and a clear path forward, are what customers say they want. FlexScore enables you to take a closer look at both assets and debts.  The application looks very good, both on iPhone and iPad.  ^SR

“Today we launch our new mobile app: beautiful, sleek and full of advice and easy to figure out (unlike our wives)” FlexScore is “Financial Advice for the Rest of Us”. I believe they “white label” their app to FI’s for PFM/mobile banking which is a HOT category. You can download the app from either mobile platform without having to enter all your banking information. VERY EASY GUI. I’m wondering about their go-to-market strategy. Is it revenue from FI’s from white label software offering OR direct to consumer and selling that data to others? From our friends at BIC: FlexScore provides users with a view on their financial position and position compared to peers and also provides recommendations on how users can improve their scores.

Folks, PFM has been around for years and years but I believe it’s hot now because consumers are much more likely to actually use a PFM if it’s on their phone and ESPECIALLY if it is integrated with their mobile banking application. FlexScore the MOST consumer friendly presentation so far today so that anybody could use it, no matter their level of education. ^WM

VerifyValid    Paul Doyle (CEO & Founder)  The company provides a digital checkbook from your mobile phone.  This may be what we need in the U.S. to wean us off checks. The U.S. is the last market on the planet where people still write checks. Today’s announcement is about their consumer mobile app. They acknowledge that consumer’s don’t think about, or care about payments; they just want payments to work. It has to be simple, and this offering looks like it is. When you use the service to receive payments, you can deposit the digital check you’ve received into your choice off accounts. ^SR

Full disclosure, William Mills Agency provides public relations for VerifyValid.

I first met Paul a year ago at Finovate Fall 2014 when Paul did a presentation with Deluxe check printers. “This month, so far million has been authorized and sent through our service.” Paul is showing their app on an Apple iPhone. When I first saw this last year I could not believe no one had thought of this before; it makes so much sense. Paul is now showing how he uses VerifyValid’s mobile app so he can manage/approve/send checks for his business using his own application. Now getting ready to discuss a new product launching today at Finovate.

New consumer app is called MagicMoney and he is giving a demo now of his real personal checking account that he shares with his wife and can use the contacts in his phone to create a new payee. This is very slick and I would imagine that VerifyValid is a contender for best in show. Paul now showing a recipient’s lockbox via browser. ^WM

iBillionaire   Raul Moreno (CEO & Co-Founder)  Want to party like a rockstar?  Can’t help you with that. Want to invest like a billionaire? Now, you can. iBillionaire tracks the public filings of the world’s leading investors like Buffet, Soros, etc.  Those disclosures are near-impossible to read through on your own. This app makes it easy to see. Retail investors can also look at a stock, and see which heavyweight investors own it. What are the top 30 stocks owned by billionaire investors? “You don’t have to be a billionaire to invest like one.” 150,000 investors using the platform currently. I’m going to download this one! ^SR

They are showing an IOS app that I believe mimics the stock portfolios of billionaires so that investor can hold similar (although much smaller) investments much like Larry Ellison or Bill Gates.  Low cost investment technology. They have 150,000 investors using their product today. iPhone app is free. They are looking to partner with FI’s and advisors. ^WM

WorkFusion   Max Yankelevich (CEO)  This offering is a crowdsourced platform, that enables a company to outsource repetitive tasks. Sounds like they integrate with Amazon’s Mechanical Turk and eLance. WorkFusion also enables you to assign some tasks to your own staff. The software-as-a-service (SAAS) offering is powered by machine learning. As you assign more tasks, you can improve your performance (work gets done faster, more accurately) over time. There is a workflow tool and dashboard to manage and report on tasks. This tool helps you to automate previously manual-intensive activities. ^SR

SAS platform around massive data collection for FI at 1/2 the cost. The way they do it is by pairing freelance workers with machine learning. 7 of the top 10 data providers for FI use their platform.  Adam showing demo now using a web browser as if he is the data manager for an FI. He is using an example of collecting how often a dividend announcement might be collected. Showing an earnings release from a company distributed on Business Wire and copying three fields of information (price and dates). I’m not an expert on “big data” collection and management but thankfully my associate Steven Ramirez, CEO of Beyond the Arc is THE EXPERT in big data for financial institutions. Showing a data collection and report that was done in 15 seconds from one minute. NYC-based company focused on FI’s and are offering a free pilot upon request. ^WM

Misys    József Nyíri (Director, Innovation & Digital Channels LABS) While MiSys gets points for trying to be creative, I really have no idea what they are offering. Their Finovate skit featuring two superheroes really went nowhere. I think there is something about better understanding customers and making relevant offers. Perhaps voice-activated services for banking? They have an “experience  engine”, whatever that is. ^SR

MISYS is a huge player but I’m not quite getting their presentation. I’m glad they are using humor and the crowd seems to likes it. Two of the three presenters are in costume as super hero’s. NOW we are getting to the demo. Again, another beautiful product but I have no idea what they do. I THINK it’s a mobile banking app for IOS but I’m not sure. I’ve got to research this. Our friends at BIC say: Disruptive digital innovation to 2,000 financial services customers worldwide – making banking “frustration-free” for consumers. ^WM

Fintech Innovation - Live Blog from Finovate

We’re blogging live from the Fall Finovate show in New York. Over 1,500 people on hand to learn more about innovations for banks, credit unions, investment companies, payments providers, credit card issuers, and others  in financial services.  Our blog will cover more than 70 companies over a two day period. You can also follow the action on Twitter. Please follow us https://twitter.com/beyondthearc and watch hashtag #Finovate.

This is the second post in a series, from Day 1 of Finovate 2014 in New York. Read our coverage of the morning sessions here: http://beyondthearc.com/blog/2014/customer-experience/fintech_bank_innovation_day1

PayItSimple -  Alon Feit (CFO & Co-Founder) and Stacy Fassberg (All Things Marketing or VP, Marketing) Merchants can offer interest-free installment payments on the consumer’s existing credit card. Enjoy now, pay later– and avoid the interest. No fees or charges.  Interested to learn more about this business model. PayItSimple integrates with online shopping carts, and can be implemented at point of sale. Merchants can take advantage of an API. Merchant’s payment is secured, backed by the credit card issuer. Wondering how chargebacks affect the process. ^SR

GREMLN – Ryan Bell (CEO)  and TJ Tavares (Sr. Sales Executive) A secure social media platform for financial services. The company was introduced by Joe Nadreau, a senior leader at Wells Fargo Advisors (who  lives in St Louis, also home to GREMLN.) The desktop application UI looks a lot like HootSuite.  Mobile app allows approval of posts on the go. Enables banks to easily administer their compliance policies. The platform enables you to maintain a content library, with content that has been pre-approved. Has built-in audit function, to help banks maintain social media history if ever need for internal or regulatory audit. ^SR

eMoney Advisor  -  Kyle Wharton (Business Development) and Chad Porche (Development)  eMoney Advisor provides a suite of online tools for financial advisors. Over 200 reports, an online vault, client portal, PFM, and more. A lot is packed into this product. They have just launched analytics for advisors, with dynamic drill-down and simple visualizations. ^SR

Dynamics  -  Jeff Mullen (CEO) Dynamics enables you to add software apps to a credit card, and then include a physical button to enable functionality. This is a push-button credit card, with over 100 electronics components. Includes EMV, as well as other embedded technology. The card has a micro-battery, wondering what happens when the battery dies? The card is very distinctive, I’m sure there is some novelty for consumers.  I’m not sure I’m excited by the way they have applied the technology, but the idea of adding multi-function chips to a credit card is very innovative. ^SR

Luxoft  – Przemek Berendt (VP Global Marketing) and Fabrice Aresu (Head of Business Support Group)  Luxoft uses Big Data and visualization for a financial institution’s data warewhouse. Pre-defined dashboards make it simple to see data, across the bank’s silos. This is a strong tool for viewing risk metrics. They have a great visualization of customer complaints, helping the bank to more actively manage the risk. Not a one-size-fits-all solution, they state it is easy to customize. ^SR

iQuantifi   Tom White (CEO & Founder) and Karen White (CPO & Co-Founder)  This company embraces the “robo-advisor” title, and their offering makes investing easier and more strategic for millennials. Investors can personalize their financial plan, and see it on a timeline. Investment advisory algorithm helps to recommend the right investments for each investor. The tool enables people to manage their monthly budget, and tie cashflow to goals, matched with investments. Cash Finder helps people spot ways to save money from their budget: $200 short this month?  The app tells you what expenses you may be able to cut. Combination of PFM and investment management, designed for a mass market audience. ^SR

My Virtual StrongBox   Ron Daly (CEO) and Samantha Thrift (Sales Associate)  They consider their product to be an online safe deposit box. How do I upload my grandmother’s wedding ring? Banks can use this as part of their lending platform, to securely exchange documents. The product has an interactive wizard that prompts you with ideas for what documents you might store. Ron asks rhetorically, “How is this different from DropBox, Box, and other data storage options?” Good question! Not sure there is a good answer, except that the product is customized for use in the banking industry. ^SR

MX (MoneyDesktop)  Ryan Caldwell (CEO & Founder) and Matt West (Sales)  Very impressive cross-platform demonstration. Industry-leading Personal Financial Management (PFM) solution works flawlessly across every device conceivable. They demoed on iPhone, Android, iPad, iPad Mini, Mac laptop, PC laptop and at least 6 others. The company also unveiled their new name, they’ve dropped the “Desktop” and have become MX. They are now offering their technology as a platform, Helios. This is an important move for the company, and it changes their position in the market. In some cases, their former competitors become potential customers of the platform. This move is not without some risk for MX, they’ve gotten to where they are by being tremendously focused and providing a flawless product. It is important that they don’t dilute their message, or slow their pace.  ^SR

(Full disclosure, WMA has provided PR services for MoneyDesktop in the past.) I’ve watched this company prosper and grow for years. and they often win a “Best of Show” at Finovate events. I think Ryan is very talented and working with him in the past I know they are very forward thinking. “1/2 of all online banking vendors utilize MoneyDesktop”. Presentation showing the problems with HTML5.  Today launching new fin tech application development platform that is usable among Apple, Android, Windows and Amazon devices using native code. I believe the platform is called HELIOS. Now showing the exact same app on a Windows 8 PC and a MacBook Pro using the same native code.  Now showing a HELIOS app on the Amazon TV. That’s something we have not seen before.  Changing company name from MoneyDesktop to MX. Not just PFM.  I am betting they will win another “best of show” this time around.  ^WM