Huntington mitigates spending in Q1

Huntington Bancshares continued its efficiencies push during the first quarter, saying it plans to keep expenses at a 1% to 3% increase over each quarter to offset upcoming economic uncertainty. THE BIGGER PICTURE: The $189 billion bank’s noninterest expenses increased 3% year over year to $1 billion, according to the bank’s earnings supplement. Huntington has […]

KeyBank on track for 2023 cost reduction

KeyBank is on track to cut costs in 2023 as the bank worked to make room for investments in customer acquisition technology and embedded banking in the first quarter. In Q1, KeyBank’s noninterest expenses increased by 4% to $428 million, according to the bank’s earnings supplement. However, the slight increase does not seem to affect […]

TransUnion Brings Credit Scoring to the Blockchain
  • TransUnion has partnered with Spring Labs and Quadrata to bring credit scoring to the blockchain.
  • Spring Labs’ technology will deliver TransUnion-powered data to Quadrata’s Web3 digital passport.
  • TransUnion EVP of Financial Services Jason Laky said the move will “allow for DeFi lenders to have access to this critical information when making their lending decisions with confidence, ultimately minimizing their risk and providing borrowers more opportunity for better terms.”

TransUnion has partnered with two firms to bring credit scores onto the blockchain. The Illinois-based company has tapped data security firm Spring Labs and decentralized networks expert Quadrata to ultimately help lenders make data-driven decisions on credit applications submitted via the blockchain.

The partnership will enable TransUnion to– upon the customer’s request– provide credit data that is not stored on a blockchain to decentralized finance applications (DApps). TransUnion, which holds the consumer credit data off-chain, will leverage Spring Labs’ patented technology that delivers credit scoring data while keeping the consumer’s identity on blockchain secure. Quadrata will leverage its digital passport, a Web3 identity solution that will automatically sync the credit scoring data across the blockchain.

“Credit scoring is an important tool for lenders to help mitigate risk regardless of the platform being used,” said TransUnion EVP of Financial Services Jason Laky. “This partnership with Spring Labs and Quadrata will allow for DeFi lenders to have access to this critical information when making their lending decisions with confidence, ultimately minimizing their risk and providing borrowers more opportunity for better terms.”

DeFi lending platforms have the potential to reach a more diverse set of consumers than traditional lending platforms. Not only do they offer more flexibility when compared to traditional lenders, but they also allow the borrower to customize their loan. Borrowers choose the collateral they provide, the duration of their loan, and the interest rate they are willing to pay.

Bringing credit scoring to the Web3 space will facilitate DeFi lending, lower the risk for DeFi lenders, and increase opportunities for borrowers. “As more consumers and lenders move to blockchain to conduct business, it’s important to ensure that the balance is struck between the information that lenders need to assess risk and the privacy and anonymity expected by users of the technology,” said Spring Labs CEO John Sun. “This new product featuring TransUnion’s identity and credit data at its core is a big step toward achieving that balance and allowing more lending opportunities on blockchain while minimizing risk.”

Photo by Joey Kyber

FinovateEurope Talks: Open Banking and Open Finance

Europe is a leading region in open banking and open finance, and the region’s fintech experts have a lot to say about both topics. While we were at FinovateEurope in London last month, our team set out to gather thoughts on the open banking and open finance environment in Europe and beyond.

In this five-minute video, we feature nine industry leaders who talk about the overall purpose of open banking and open finance, why they are important, and monetization strategies. The clip also addresses customer sentiment– are end users really on board?

Photo by Jill Burrow

Watch: European Parliament formally adopts Markets in Cryptoassets Regulation

After some delay, the European Parliament has finally voted to adopt MiCAR. MiCAR is now expected to enter into force in June and start to apply in 2024. As the countdown towards application begins, we have published a webinar and a new report to help potentially in scope businesses prepare. As part of this, we highlight how implementation and ongoing supervision is likely to differ across different Member States in light of existing regulatory frameworks and approaches.

Webinar recording

Knowledge Portal subscribers have access to our recent webinar: Managing MICAR: regulatory strategizing from a cross-border perspective. Click here to access or subscribe

Our cross-border panel of experts discuss:

  • Background and timeline
  • Overview of MiCAR framework
  • Global implications
  • Strategic planning
  • Authorisation requirements
  • Transitional measures
  • Implementation and transition within Germany, France, the Netherlands, Italy and Spain


Knowledge Portal subscribers have access to our new report: Transitioning to MiCAR: a cross-border guide. Click here to access or subscribe

Among other things, this includes overviews of the existing regulatory frameworks for service providers and current expectations around transition into MiCAR in the following jurisdictions:

  • France
  • Germany
  • Belgium
  • Italy
  • Luxembourg
  • The Netherlands
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Spain
  • Sweden

Get in touch

The journey to compliance will look different for different businesses, and market participants will need to develop their own tailored regulatory strategies. Do get in touch with any of our contacts to discuss further.

Arkose Labs Introduces New Technology to Combat Advanced Phishing Attacks
  • Arkose Labs introduced new detection and alert capabilities against advanced phishing attacks.
  • The new capabilities combat an evolution in phishing called “reverse proxy phishing.”
  • Arkose Labs won Best of Show in its Finovate debut at FinovateSpring in 2019.

Bot detection specialist Arkose Labs now detects and alerts against advanced phishing attacks. The new functionality combats “reverse proxy phishing,” the latest evolution in the challenge of dealing with fraudsters and cybercriminals.

“Phishing isn’t simply about domain block lists or analyzing website contents anymore,” Arkose Labs CTO Ashish Jain said. “Those methods might work against unsophisticated attacks, but new phishing attacks require a comprehensive security posture.”

Reverse proxy attacks use fake websites to impersonate legitimate websites. Bank websites are a common target. In the process, users are encouraged to visit the fake website via a message and are asked to login. The fake website then sends the user’s information to the server of the real web site. This causes the real website to issue a one-time password (OTP) or security PIN. The fraudster can then leverage the proxy to extract user credentials, including the OTP or PIN. The attacker can also secure the cookie from the legitimate website. This enables the cybercriminal to access the user’s account.

“Arkose Bot Manager beats attackers at their own game by forcing them to integrate Arkose into their fake pages with absolutely no effect on the user experience,” Jain added. “With Arkose integrated, we can thwart a phishing attack and give the business data on the attackers – and unlike traditional phishing detection methods, Arkose Phishing Protection is able to detect and block malicious requests in real-time.”

Arkose Labs’ new advanced phishing protection comes as the company announced a new anti-fraud guarantee against SMS toll fraud attacks. The warranty covers up to one million dollars in telecom expenses if Arkose Bot Manager fails to stop an SMS toll fraud attack against one of its managed service customers.

SMS toll fraud is a type of bot attack in which large volumes of SMS messages are sent to premium rate numbers. Also known as SMS pumping or International Revenue Share Fraud (IRSF), this attack can result in sizable fraudulent SMS charges against a business. In some cases, the charges can amount to millions of dollars a month.

“This type of attack hits a company right in the wallet,” Arkose Labs CFO Frank Teruel said. “We stand confident in our platform, and Arkose already has saved customers millions in fraudulent SMS charges by stopping these attacks. Frankly, this type of warranty should be table stakes for any security vendor.”

Founded in 2017, Arkose Labs is headquartered in San Francisco, California. The company won Best of Show in its Finovate debut at FinovateSpring 2019. Arkose Labs returned to the Finovate stage two years later for FinovateFall in New York. Kevin Gosschalk is founder and CEO.

Photo by Noelle Otto

ESG Regulations May Bring Investing’s Green Future

Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) investing has been gaining traction across the globe. PwC reports that ESG is “soaring”, and anticipates that ESG institutional investment will climb 84% to $33.9 trillion in 2026.

The firm states that by 2026, ESG assets under management (AUM) in the U.S. will more than double to total $10.5 trillion. In Europe, PwC expects the amount of ESG AUM will see an increase of 53% to $19.6 trillion. And in APAC, the firm estimates that ESG AUM will more than triple to $3.3 trillion.

What will help drive that change? Regulation.


Though the concept of ESG investing has been around for more than a decade, there have only recently been efforts to formalize regulation surrounding ESG disclosure, investment, and ESG practices and financial products. Europe, for instance, has come up with its European Green Deal, a set of proposals to stem climate change, support sustainable innovation, and transition Europe into a climate-neutral continent by 2050.

Europe isn’t the only region with a “green” vision. Here’s a non-exhaustive list of key measures some countries are taking:

The Australian Government plans to introduce mandatory sustainability and ESG reporting requirements for large businesses and financial institutions based in Australia. The requirements will be put in place in stages and will begin as soon as next year.

The U.K.
The U.K.’s Non-Financial Reporting Directive (NFRD) requires U.K. companies to disclose energy use, carbon footprint, and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions within their annual financial reporting. In 2021, The U.K. Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) released Greening Finance: a Roadmap to Sustainable Investing in 2021.

At the start of 2023, the European Parliament implemented The Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation (SFDR), policy aimed to enhance transparency in sustainable investing and ultimately prevent greenwashing. Also going live in January 2023 is The Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD), an initiative put into place by the European Parliament to broaden the Non-Financial Reporting Directive’s (NFRD) and fix weaknesses surrounding ESG regulation and reporting.

By the end of March 2023, India’s top 1,000 listed companies by market capitalization were required to begin filing a Business Responsibility and Sustainability Report (BRSR) to the Securities and Exchange Board (SEBI) of India. In addition to general disclosures, companies need to document their compliance with National Guidelines on Responsible Business Conduct (NGRBCs) and submit metrics on nine ESG factors, including ethics, sustainability, and human rights.

The U.S.
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) published a plan to issue a set of reporting standards for ESG in March of last year. As part of the plan, the SEC would require firms to report their climate risks, risk management, ESG governance, and GHG emissions. While the ruling on these proposed mandatory climate risk disclosures is expected to occur this month, SEC Chair Gary Gensler may be considering changes to the plan before it goes into effect.

Also notable is Nasdaq’s Board Diversity Rule that requires companies listed on Nasdaq’s U.S. exchange to publicly disclose board-level diversity statistics each year. If companies fall short of expectations, they are required to explain why they do not have diverse directors.

Currently, Canadian firms are not subject to mandatory ESG reporting. However, the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) issued a notice last year stating plans to require large Canadian financial institutions and insurance companies to disclosed ESG efforts and climate impacts starting in 2024.

ESG fintechs

Though some fintechs do not fit the requirements of ESG reporting, many have either incorporated ESG elements into their business or structured their whole business around an ESG element. In fact, according to Crunchbase, there are 300 fintechs with an ESG focus. Check out Finovate’s ESG scholarship winners or take a look at the following notable fintechs emphasizing ESG:

  • Spiral allows banks to increase customer engagement by embedding sustainability and social impact capabilities.
  • Enfuce offers payment, open banking, and sustainability services to banks, fintechs, financial operators, and merchants.
  • Treecard is a green finance platform that allows consumers to spend, save, and invest responsibly.
  • Connect Earth connects carbon data to drive sustainable finance.
  • Single.Earth is a fintech startup tokenizing nature to make it the new gold.
  • Datia is a data platform for sustainable finance, working with forward-thinking financial institutions to automate their ESG workflows.
  • The Upright Project develops an AI-enabled quantification model to measure the net impact of companies and funds.
  • SparkChange provides specialist carbon data that empowers better ESG investment products, risk management, and financial reporting.

Photo by Artem Podrez

Fifth Third stays course on tech investment

Fifth Third will continue to modernize its platform through technology as long as the return on investment remains prominent. In the first quarter of 2023, the bank’s tech and communications spend increased 17% year over year to $118 million related to the cost of modernization investments, according to the bank’s earnings release. “We do not […]

IBM focuses on AI in Q1

IBM’s first-quarter strategy included AI and hybrid cloud efforts as its clients sought automated workflows and improved digital customer experiences. “Our focus is on hybrid cloud and AI, the two most influential technologies for business. … In tandem, these technologies drive both business outcomes and innovation,” Chief Executive Arvind Krishna said during Wednesday’s Q1 2023 […]

FinovateSpring 2023 Sneak Peek:

A look at the companies demoing at FinovateSpring in San Francisco on May 23 and 24. Register today and save your spot. is the first community financial institution platform to apply real-time multi-faceted data with machine learning to produce a segment of one digital experience for consumers.

Features seeks to go beyond personalization to impact the top and bottom lines of their clients by:

  • Increasing deposits
  • Increasing loan applications
  • Increasing digital engagement

Why it’s great

The platform is the only built-for-purpose solution that leverages internal and external data with machine learning to create an experience tailored to the individual’s needs each time they engage.


Craig McLaughlin, Co-Founder & CEO
McLaughlin’s focus is on’s partnerships with leading community financial institutions. He is regularly featured in banking industry media.

Mark Ryan, Co-Founder & Chief Analytics Officer
Ryan’s focus is on ROI goals, data strategies, digital channel reporting, and process establishment for data analysis.

FinovateSpring 2023 Sneak Peek: Setuply

A look at the companies demoing at FinovateSpring in San Francisco on May 23 and 24. Register today and save your spot.

Setuply is a client onboarding solution that optimizes provider revenue recognition while reducing time to value for customers.


  • Client IMPACT Control Panel – addresses client transparency and engagement
  • ScaleUP Onboarding Engine – predictable, scalable, and repeatable
  • Professional Services Automation – provides improved capacity and throughput

Why it’s great

Onboard faster and live better with Setuply’s complete client onboarding solution.


Rachel Lyubovitzky, CEO
Lyubovitzky is a successful B2B enterprise tech entrepreneur, accomplished leader, and investor with a passion for effective strategies, successful execution and continued innovation.

Kelly Blackledge, Product Manager
As a seasoned B2B Product Manager, Blackledge leverages her expertise in market research, user experience design, and agile development to deliver powerful solutions that drive the business forward.

FinovateSpring 2023 Sneak Peek: Deception And Truth Analysis (D.A.T.A.)

A look at the companies demoing at FinovateSpring in San Francisco on May 23 and 24. Register today and save your spot.

D.A.T.A. provides lightning fast and highly accurate analysis of investment due-diligence documents for their level of deceptiveness and truthfulness.


  • Provides unique actionable insights for investment decision makers
  • 350x faster than investment professionals
  • Scientifically rigorous and validated

Why it’s great

Accurate assessment of deceptiveness and truthfulness is predictive of future investment outcomes.


Jason Voss, Co-Founder & CEO
Voss is a retired five-star and Lipper #1 portfolio manager. He is an author, deception scientist, conscious capitalist, and meditator.

Nandan Shah, Co-Founder & COO
Shah is an accomplished executive with a background in public and private market investing and a passion for entrepreneurship.

Ally Financial invests in technology for improved CX

Ally Financial continues to invest in digital capabilities throughout its product suite to improve customer experience. “We’ll continue finding ways to disrupt the industry and remove friction for customers by delivering leading digital experiences,” Chief Executive Jeffrey Brown said today during the bank’s earnings call. THE BIGGER PICTURE: Ally’s digital investment played a role in […]

Transactions: Lloyds Bank launches payment service

Lloyds Bank launched PayMe, a payment transfer service developed in partnership with fintech Bottomline Technologies. PayMe, which launched Tuesday, allows businesses to send payments when the beneficiary’s bank details are unknown, according to a Lloyds Bank release. Companies can send a secure link to the other party through SMS or QR code, and the other […]

U.S. Bank increases e-commerce, tech-led merchant revenue

U.S. Bank continued its multiyear strategy to invest in e-commerce and tech-led revenue efforts in the first quarter of 2023. Tech-led merchant processing fee revenue growth, for example, increased 12% year over year and 56% sequentially. THE BIG PICTURE: Tech-led merchant processing includes digital, omni-commerce and e-commerce revenue channels, according to today’s earnings presentation. Investment […]

SmartAsset Acquires DeftSales to Help Advisors Grow their Practices
  • Financial advice platform SmartAsset has acquired advisor prospect engagement company DeftSales.
  • The company has integrated DeftSales into its SmartAdvisor advisor growth solution, renaming the technology DeftSales by SmartAsset.
  • The new tool helps advisors respond to leads instantly, enabling them to engage warm leads before another advisor follows up first.

Financial advice platform SmartAsset is acquiring prospect engagement company DeftSales this week for an undisclosed amount.

Founded in 2020, DeftSales offers tools that integrate with a range of CRM platforms to automate financial advisors’ business development outreach and provide analytics insights on client engagement. The technology helps advisors respond to leads instantly, enabling them to engage warm leads before another advisor follows up first.

“We are enormously excited to announce the acquisition of DeftSales and we look forward to integrating their solutions with our own SmartAdvisor platform,” said company CEO and Founder Michael Carvin. “The feedback from advisors using DeftSales has been incredibly clear – by automating many tasks, it dramatically decreases the work required to be successful in converting SmartAdvisor prospects into clients.”

SmartAsset has integrated DeftSales into its SmartAdvisor advisor growth solution, renaming the technology DeftSales by SmartAsset. The new solution integrates SmartAsset’s compliant user interface with DeftSales’ automated campaigns and analytics. DeftSales by SmartAsset offers automated emails and text messages, FastCall technology that enables advisors to follow-up on leads while they are busy with a current client, and an analytics dashboard to monitor engagement efforts.

DeftSales Co-Founder and COO James Fason will join the SmartAsset team as Director of Engineering.

SmartAsset has a mission to help people make smart financial decisions. The company’s educational content, calculators, and tools reach 75 million people each month. In 2021, the New York-based company raised $110 million in funding, boosting its total funding to more than $161 million. And the company is still growing. SmartAsset has brought on 27 new hires so far this year.

Photo by Tima Miroshnichenko

NayaOne Wins Tender from Financial Conduct Authority to Build Digital Sandbox
  • Digital sandbox developer NayaOne secured the Digital Sandbox tender from the U.K. Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).
  • In the past year, NayaOne has built digital sandboxes and marketplaces for Lloyds Banking Group and FinTech North.
  • NayaOne won Best of Show in its Finovate debut at FinovateEurope in March.

FinovateEurope Best of Show winner NayaOne has scored again this year. The London, U.K.-based fintech has secured the Digital Sandbox tender from the country’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). The Digital Sandbox will give startups a safe and secure environment to build, test, and develop their fintech solutions. All with the full support of the FCA.

“We are thrilled to have been selected for this prestigious opportunity to collaborate with the FCA on driving innovation in financial services,” NayaOne CEO Karan Jain said. “We believe that our digital transformation platform and synthetic data technology will be a valuable asset in helping fintech companies to develop and test their products more efficiently and effectively.”

The FCA’s decision comes in the wake of a pair of pilot projects, in 2020 and again in 2022. The initiatives gave startups access to synthetic and publicly available data in order to test and develop their solutions. The FCA announced that it would make the digital sandbox permanent in the summer of 2023. NayaOne has built a business of creating digital sandboxes for financial institutions, such as Lloyds Banking Group and FinTech North. And it is this experience – according to FCA Chief Data, Information, and Intelligence Officer Jessica Rusu – that makes the company well-positioned to help the FCA fulfill its goal of “promoting solutions to complex regulatory challenges like APP fraud, greenwashing, and scam detection.”

NayaOne demoed its Digital Sandbox in its Finovate debut at FinovateEurope. The company’s platform helps make innovation, integration, and partnership an easier – and faster – process for banks. NayaOne offers single key access to more than 200 technology vendors; a secure, digital sandbox environment; and 2.5 billion data points to support tech evaluation. The company reports that it has enabled banks to accelerate their proof-of-concept timeline from 12 months to only two months. This saves banks up to 80% in costs and significantly increases productivity.

NayaOne’s Digital Sandbox announcement comes as the company reports that Bambu is now available via the NayaOne Marketplace. Bambu is a Singapore-based B2B roboadvisor and fellow Finovate alum. A three-time Best of Show winner, the company most recently demoed at FinovateFall in 2021. “We recognize NayaOne’s commitment to enable banks and financial institutions to take advantage of revolutionary innovations in financial technology by bringing banks and fintechs together for innovation,” Bambu founder and CEO Ned Phillips said. “As a wealth technology provider, we at Bambu want to bring our award-winning financial solutions to the forefront, and we look forward to doing so on the NayaOne Digital Transformation Platform.”

NayaOne was founded in 2019. Karan Jain joined the company as CEO in 2021.

Photo by Jorge Sepúlveda

eMagazine: Disruption Ahead: What Are the Key Trends Dominating Fintech This Year?

The past few years have been turbulent, and there’s reason to believe more turbulence is on its way. Technological innovation might be the answer to challenges that arise in the finance industry, but it’s important to take a moment to talk about the human side of this industry. Ultimately, everything in fintech is for the benefit of the people using our products, and right now that thought needs to be at the forefront of everything we do.

The companies that will succeed in this time of uncertainty are the ones that excel at understanding their customers, and who give them good experiences, and, of course, help them lead richer, more productive financial lives.

Download this Finovate eMagazine and get an overview of the upcoming challenges of 2023. Find out more about:

  • Generative AI, the metaverse in the finance sector, and other technology trends emerging in 2023
  • Exclusive interviews from FinovateEurope addressing the challenges of the fintech landscape, the future of customer experience, and coopetition in the industry and how to turn it into successful partnerships
  • The evolution of fintech in the last 20 years

Get access now >

FinovateSpring 2023 Sneak Peek: 1Kosmos

A look at the companies demoing at FinovateSpring in San Francisco on May 23 and 24. Register today and save your spot.

1Kosmos‘ BlockID provides workers and customers with convenient, passwordless multi-factor authentication with the added security of identity verification to prevent identity fraud and account takeover.


  • Self-service, KYC-compliant identity proofing with tailorable onboarding journeys
  • Reusable, NIST certified IAL3/AA3 MFA
  • GDPR-compliant privacy-by-design with immutable audit trail

Why it’s great

1Kosmos’ Software-as-a-Service platform is certified to NIST, FIDO2 and iBeta PAD2 specifications and supports identity proofing and passwordless multi-factor authentication for workers and customers.


Jens Hinrichsen, SVP, North American Sales
Hinrichsen is a career business growth leader, having held a variety of sales and marketing roles across the cybersecurity, fraud, and digital user experience space.

Robert MacDonald, VP Product Marketing
MacDonald has more than 15 years of global marketing experience with leading B2B and B2C identity software companies.

Goldman Sachs tech spend jumps 10% YoY to $466M

Goldman Sachs was focused on growing its Global Banking and Markets, and Asset and Wealth Management businesses in the first quarter of 2023 amid market turbulence. “Our robust financial position allowed us to focus on serving our clients and helping them navigate this period of market disruption across our leading businesses,” Chief Financial Officer Denis […]