Podcast: Data analytics, automation help FIs better understand customer sentiment


Financial institutions can look to data analytics technology to better understand customer sentiment so they can drive organizational change.  Financial institutions are looking to utilize all available unstructured data from calls, emails and chat capabilities to understand customer needs, Global Head of Financial Services at Qualtrics Dmitry Binkevich tells Bank Automation News on this episode […]


Ocrolus Enhances its Mortgagetech


Financial document automation platform Ocrolus has proven its technology as a useful tool in the mortgage industry. The New York-based company is augmenting its reputation today, after announcing this morning it has enhanced its dashboard for mortgage lenders.

The new capability enables both wholesale and direct mortgage lenders to enhance their loan origination workflow. It also automates complex income calculations for both traditional and self-employed borrowers, including those with non-traditional employment, multiple borrowers, or several employers. 

“Manual document processing and income analysis create a bottle neck in the origination process,” said Ocrolus COO Vik Dua. “With Ocrolus’ enhanced mortgage offering, we’re empowering lenders with accurate document analysis to help reduce processing time, mitigate risk, and maximize profit margin on every single loan. We provide lenders with a highly flexible and scalable back office so they can focus on their core business.”

Significant to the enhancement is the combination of three of Ocrolus’ tools: Classify, which enables lenders to speed up processing time with automated document indexing; Capture, which combines AI computer vision and human validation to extract key information from documents with over 99% accuracy; and Analyze, which enables lenders to streamline income calculation for both traditionally and self-employed borrowers with automated, transparent and flexible worksheets.

The technology also has positive implications for borrowers as it offers an objective and standardized approach to evaluating income and supports streamlined communication channels between the borrower and the lender.

Ocrolus was founded in 2014 and has gone on to raise $127 million for its AI-powered document automation platform. The company, which demoed its technology earlier this month at FinovateFall 2023 and won Best of Show honors at FinovateFall 2021, counts PayPal, Brex, SoFi, and Plaid among its clients.

Photo by RDNE Stock project

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Atomic, PayLink, and the Consumer-Centric Transformation of Financial Services


What is the future of open banking in the U.S.? Today, financial connectivity innovator Atomic launched PayLink, a new suite of solutions that streamline payment switching for consumers.

The new offering provides for an improved user experience for financial services consumers. It is also a big step towards helping banks and other financial institutions align themselves with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s goals with regards to open banking.

We talked with Andrea Martone, Head of Product for Atomic, to learn more about PayLink, and the drive toward a more open banking system in the U.S.

Headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah, and founded in 2019, Atomic made its Finovate debut two years ago at FinovateFall 2021. Jordan Wright is co-founder and CEO.

Congratulations on the launch of PayLink. Tell us more about this new suite of products.

Andrea Martone: Thank you! We’re thrilled about the launch of PayLink. We’ve taken our expertise in building user-permissioned connectivity for sharing and updating data and expanded it to merchant accounts, streaming services, and recurring bill providers, enabling consumers to seamlessly update their payment methods on file and retrieve information on upcoming payments. Building PayLink was a natural next step on our journey towards helping consumers update their primary banking relationship as it helps overcome a major point of friction in the process. To build it, we leveraged our cutting-edge TrueAuth technology that allows users to authenticate directly on their devices, without ever sharing login credentials.  

For our readers who are new to Atomic, can you tell us a little about the company?

Martone: At Atomic we believe that making it simple for consumers to access, share, and update their financial data is key to unlocking new financial opportunities. By embedding Atomic’s SDK into their online and mobile banking applications, financial institutions can enable consumers to easily update direct deposit instructions, verify income and employment, import W2s and, now, update payment methods on file with merchants without leaving their application. With our solutions, financial institutions help grow new account adoption, qualify borrowers, and streamline tax filing.

Open banking was a major topic of conversation at our FinovateFall conference a few weeks ago. What is your take on the state of open banking in the U.S.? 

Martone: Open banking in the U.S. is at an interesting juncture. With the CFPB taking bold steps in their public commentary, there’s an exciting momentum building around the consumer-centric transformation of financial services. While Europe has been ahead in this race, the U.S. is catching up, and I believe we are headed for an ecosystem that allows for significant innovations to support both consumers and financial institutions. 

One of the issues that came up in our discussion on open banking was the idea that open banking is integrally related to the issue of digital identity. Do you agree? Why is this so and why is it important to keep in mind?

Martone: Digital identity is the backbone of a secure open banking ecosystem. As we democratize access to financial data, establishing secure, verifiable digital identities becomes crucial. It’s not just about sharing data, but ensuring that the right data gets shared with the right entities for the right purposes – securely. Our TrueAuth technology, for example, is designed to enhance credential security while empowering consumers.

The CFPB is working on regulations that could impact personal data rights. What are your thoughts on these potential regulations and their impact on companies in the open banking space – as well as the impact on consumer adoption of open banking? 

Martone: I view the CFPB’s focus on personal data rights as a necessary step toward fostering a fair, transparent financial ecosystem. Giving consumers greater portability over their financial data opens the door for increased innovation and competition in the financial services space. However, it also creates a wider surface area for exploitation and misuse of data, as well. As a result, regulations will need to set the standards that ensure consumer privacy and data security and, in turn, build consumer trust. For companies evolving into the open banking space, this is an opportunity to align their products with consumer-centric values, which I believe will accelerate consumer adoption and loyalty in the long run.

Atomic is headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah. We’ve seen a surprising number of innovative fintechs headquartered in Utah. What is it like to be a tech startup in the Beehive State?  

Martone: Being headquartered in Utah has been fantastic for us. The state offers a thriving tech scene, a highly skilled workforce, and a business-friendly environment. We also have a dynamic team located throughout the country, which ensures that we comprise a diverse workforce. 

What can we expect to see from Atomic over the next few months and into next year?

Martone: We have a busy roadmap ahead! You can expect to see more advanced features being rolled into PayLink, further strengthening its capabilities. You will also see us double-down on our strengths in expanding connectivity where it can benefit consumers to access, share, and update data in secure, transparent, and reliable ways to expand their financial opportunities. Key to this is continuing to advance our authentication methods, including our TrueAuth technology. Additionally, we’ll be focusing on strategic partnerships to widen our reach. Our aim is to continue leading the charge in making open banking a tangible, beneficial reality for all. 

Photo by Stephen Leonardi

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MoneyGram to Launch Non-Custodial Digital Wallet


  • MoneyGram is launching a non-custodial digital wallet.
  • The wallet will help users move funds from fiat to digital currency and back again.
  • MoneyGram is leveraging the Stellar Development Foundation’s open-source public blockchain Stellar for the launch.

When you think of the top crypto players in fintech, MoneyGram may not come to mind. However, the 83-year-old company continues to position itself at the forefront of the crypto space. As evidence of this, MoneyGram unveiled its non-custodial digital wallet today.

MoneyGram will launch the non-custodial digital wallet in the first quarter of next year. The wallet will help MoneyGram users leverage stablecoins to move funds from fiat to digital currency and back again. The new wallet will effectively serve as a bridge between international money transfers and blockchain payments.

With the non-custodial digital wallet, users will be able to cash out their digital asset holdings at physical MoneyGram locations, making their funds more liquid than before. The wallet, which will leverage MoneyGram’s compliance screening capabilities, will also offer account-to-account money transfers, allowing users to send digital assets to other users in the wallet.

The wallet leverages MoneyGram’s partnership with the Stellar Development Foundation (SDF), the organization behind open-source public blockchain Stellar that allows money to be tokenized and transferred globally. MoneyGram and SDF originally partnered in October of last year, when the two piloted the cash-to-crypto functionality.

“Through the services we provide in partnership with SDF, MoneyGram has made strides to create equitable access to the global financial system, having become the single largest fiat on and off-ramp provider offering blockchain access worldwide,” said MoneyGram CEO Alex Holmes.

The “non-custodial” element of MoneyGram’s wallet is notable because it will offer users control over their own private keys, which can offer more security. And because users don’t rely on a third party to manage their funds, they are less dependent on centralized institutions, which makes the wallet more decentralized, and ultimately offers a higher level of anonymity because they don’t need to provide personal information when creating or using the wallet.

After its launch, MoneyGram’s non-custodial digital wallet will be fee-free until June of 2024. The company also notes plans to expand the wallet’s capabilities with new features next year.

MoneyGram first launched its fiat on-and-off-ramp service for digital wallets in 2022 and has since expanded the service to eight digital wallets on the Stellar blockchain. Today, consumers can cash-out in 180+ countries and cash-in in 30+ countries around the world. 

Photo by Jonathan Borba

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Goalsetter Lands $1 Million Plus a New Partnership with MSU FCU’s Reseda Group


  • Goalsetter has partnered with MSU Federal Credit Union’s (MSUFCU’s) Reseda Group this week.
  • As part of the partnership, Reseda Group has invested $1 million in Goalsetter, bringing its total funding to $20.5 million.
  • MSUFCU will white label Goalsetter’s youth banking platform for its members and will deploy the company’s classroom curriculum across local communities.

MSU Federal Credit Union’s (MSUFCU’s) Reseda Group is taking a step toward helping members and their families create better financial futures. The group announced today it has partnered with financial literacy platform Goalsetter.

The aim of the partnership is to help members and their families build better spending, saving, and investing habits. To accomplish this, Reseda Group will offer Goalsetter’s financial education tools and resources to members and their families.

There are three significant pieces to note from today’s deal. First, Reseda Group invested $1 million in Goalsetter, boosting the New York-based company’s total funding to $20.5 million. President and CEO of Reseda Group and MSUFCU April Clobes said that Reseda Group invested in Goalsetter because it is the “best solution for credit unions that want to attract and retain the next generation of members.” She added that integrating Goalsetter’s offerings can help credit unions “increase brand affinity with Gen Z members, deposits, and overall membership numbers.”

The second big piece for Goalsetter is that MSUFCU has agreed to white label Goalsetter’s youth banking platform for its members. Thirdly, MSUFCU will deploy the Goalsetter’s classroom curriculum in local school systems and community organizations across its branch locations.

“The award-winning, proven Goalsetter platform focuses on providing financial tools, education, and innovative financial wellness content built around pop culture, memes, GIFs, and game-based learning that resonates with young consumers. It will enable MSUFCU to effectively engage with younger consumers and provide them with the personalized services they seek,” said Goalsetter CEO Tanya Van Court. “We are proud to bring these solutions to the MSUFCU member community alongside Reseda Group, an organization that has been instrumental in the growth and ongoing success of the Goalsetter platform.”

Goalsetter was founded in 2016 and helps families offer their kids a NCUA-insured savings account where they can receive allowance, a Mastercard debit card with parental controls, game-based financial education quizzes, and more.

Goalsetter fits into the same category as Greenlight, which facilitates banking services through Community Federal Savings Bank, and GoHenry, which was acquired by Acorns earlier this year.

Photo by Skitterphoto

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Seven Stories: Greg Palmer and the Finovate Podcast’s Summer Series


It’s been a busy summer for Finovate VP Greg Palmer and the Finovate Podcast. If you’ve missed an episode or two, now is a great time to join Greg and his guests as they talk about some of the most pressing issues in fintech today.

From the challenge of optimizing the customer experience to strategies to make fintech-bank partnerships thrive, the Finovate podcast is a great source for insightful conversation on the key trends and opportunities in our industry.

Greg Palmer talks with Rachel Lyubovitzky, CEO and Chairwoman of Setuply, on transforming new clients into brand champions with seamless onboarding. Episode 188.

Greg Palmer interviews Kevin Brown, CMO and Head of Corporate Development at Onbe, on the importance of an excellent payments experience on customer retention and growth. Episode 187.

Greg Palmer explores alternatives to equity-based growth models and the broader fintech ecosystem with Neil Kenley, Principal with Vistara Growth. Episode 186.

Greg Palmer and Elizabeth McClusky, Director at TruStage Ventures, discuss the fintech funding landscape with a focus on DEI initiatives and credit unions. Episode 185.

Greg Palmer interviews Bryon Guerra and Herb Berkley of Lone Star National Bank on tech priorities, tips for engaging with banks, and how to make a partnership work. Episode 184.

Greg Palmer interviews Manas Chawla, CEO of London Politica, on geopolitical risk and fintech. Episode 183.

Greg Palmer talks with Luke Williams, Author of Disrupt, about the strategy behind innovation. Episode 182.

Photo by Mehmet Turgut Kirkgoz

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Backbase and FrankieOne Announce Strategic Partnership to Enhance Digital Onboarding


  • Engagement banking innovator Backbase has teamed up with identity verification and fraud prevention company FrankieOne.
  • The strategic partnership will combine the Backbase Engagement Banking Platform with FrankieOne’s identity verification solutions.
  • A four-time Finovate Best of Show winner, Backbase most recently demoed its technology at FinovateFall 2021.

Engagement banking firm Backbase has forged a strategic partnership with identity verification and fraud prevention platform FrankieOne. The two companies will work together to help banks and credit unions in Australia and New Zealand onboard customers faster and more securely. The collaboration blends Backbase’s personalized banking experience platform with FrankieOne’s identity verification solutions to make it easier for customers to seamlessly and safely access digital financial services.

Courtesy of the partnership, users of Backbase’s Engagement Banking platform will be able to access a variety of KYC, AML, biometric verification, transaction monitoring, fraud detection, and compliance capabilities from a curated roster of providers. Additionally, the recent launch of Backbase’s Engagement Banking Cloud (EBC) will give its strategic partners – like FrankieOne – a single platform that supports the full customer lifecycle.

“This partnership reinforces Backbase’s global commitment to enhancing our offering and meeting the needs of financial institutions across the region,” Backbase Director of Global Head of Fintech-As-a-Service Mayank Somaiya said. “These partnerships allow us to accelerate the integration of best-in-class capabilities into the Backbase Engagement Banking Platform.”

Backbase’s announcement comes just a few days after the company reported that it was working with Judo Bank. The Australian challenger bank, launched in 2016, selected Backbase’s Engagement Banking Platform earlier this month. In August, the Amsterdam-based fintech announced partnerships with business and IT consulting company Valleysoft and fellow Finovate alum SavvyMoney. Founded in 2003, the four-time Finovate Best of Show winner most recently demoed its technology at FinovateFall 2021. At the conference, Backbase introduced its customer onboarding solution. This technology consolidates customer finances through direct deposit, billpay auto linking, and debit card account opening.

Onboarding and fraud platform FrankieOne was founded in 2017 by Simon Costello (CEO) and Aaron Chipper (CTO). The company leverages more than 350 data sources to enable businesses to quickly and securely onboard more customers. Headquartered in Australia, FrankieOne notes that its customers see a 11% uplift in match rates after transitioning to FrankieOne.

Photo by Catarina Sousa

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Scotiabank sees gen AI potential via citizen coders


AI development has traditionally been reserved for specific coders with advanced training, but with generative AI, financial institutions can look to citizen coders. According to research and advisory group Gartner, citizen developers, or citizen coders, are employees of a company, in this case bank, that innovate outside of the traditional IT setting. Gartner stated in […]


Finovate Global Austria: BehaviorQuant Leverages Predictive Knowledge to Enhance the Investment Process


What do you as an investor know about the people who manage your money? If your answer to this question is “not very much,” then imagine the challenge of banks and other financial institutions who invest millions of dollars with hundreds, if not thousands of investment professionals.

This is an underdiscussed problem in the investment world: the lack of systematic knowledge about the individuals and teams making investment decisions for millions of individuals, families, and organizations. This can lead to underperformance in terms of investments, as well as inefficient financial advisory.

To this end, we caught up with Thomas Oberlechner, CEO and founder of BehaviorQuant. The company he founded in 2018 gives financial institutions predictive information about the people behind investment decisions. BehaviorQuant leverages behavioral science, machine learning, and automation to learn and analyze the behavior of investment professionals and teams – as well as customers. The insights derived from BehaviorQuant’s automated survey technology enables fund managers to improve their performance and better customize their services to their customers.

Headquartered in Vienna, Austria, BehaviorQuant demoed its technology at FinovateEurope earlier this year.

What problem does BehaviorQuant solve and who does it solve it for?

Thomas Oberlechner: We developed BehaviorQuant because every financial decision is ultimately made by a person or a team. BehaviorQuant solves a core problem that underlies the entire investment industry: we don’t have systematic knowledge about the people and teams behind investment decisions. And that’s true for financial professionals and clients alike.

Financial players – for example, banks, funds, financial advisors – are used to having access to vast amounts of financial data and information. But without BehaviorQuant, they don’t have systematic knowledge and data about the people and teams behind this data.  Yet it is the people and teams behind the visible financial results that play the key role in investing. You can see this everywhere — in the performance of investment teams, in the selection of fund managers, in the efficiency and success of wealth advisors.

For example, in our research we found that 37% of the performance of top decision makers at world-leading financial institutions is based on their behavioral characteristics. However, there is no product to easily measure and quantify the behavioral characteristics of decision-makers. This lack of insight into the behavioral aspects and decision-making tendencies leads to underperformance of asset managers, missed profit opportunities for investors, unrecognized fund manager selection risks, costly staffing mistakes, and churn among dissatisfied clients.

How does BehaviorQuant solve this problem better than other companies?

Oberlechner: Our behavioral finance technology combines the highest level of expertise in behavioral science, personality and decision research with machine learning. For the first time ever, we are capturing the people and teams behind the visible investment decisions. And we give our customers predictive knowledge about themselves and about others – about their own investment teams, about the fund managers they allocate their money to, about their clients. Our solutions solve three distinct problems: first, they help asset managers to improve their performance; second, they help allocators choose the best fund managers; and third, they enable advisors to tailor their advice highly efficiently to each individual client.

As we all know and often forget, markets are made up of people. And financial decision makers have very different ways of processing information, personalities, values, goals, and decision paths. Before BehaviorQuant, there was no systematic knowledge of these aspects. But it is exactly these aspects that are critical to how successfully you steer your course through the rough waters of financial risks and returns.

So BehaviorQuant enables you to efficiently personalize your client advice, optimize your investment decisions, and avoid invisible risks in capital allocation and manager selection.

Regardless of how experienced you are as a financial professional, you will always benefit from a system that gives you systematic, quantitative knowledge about people. Our clients receive predictive knowledge about asset managers, investment teams, and clients. And they make far better decisions — whether they want to interact more effectively with their clients, optimize their team’s decision-making, hire promising professionals, or select compatible external fund managers. BehaviorQuant effortlessly makes them a master of these tasks.

Who are BehaviorQuant’s primary customers. How do you reach them?

Oberlechner: The lack of knowledge about the actual decision makers is pervasive, and it affects three kinds of financial companies in particular. These companies are also our main customers. First, we work with financial companies and asset managers who actively invest in the markets and who want to optimize the returns they generate by improving their own decision processes. Second, we work with family offices and other allocators who use BehaviorQuant to evaluate and select fund managers. And thirdly, we cater to banks and investment advisors who want to excel in advising their clients. They want to advise in a highly personalized way that is truly aligned with their clients.

How do we reach these customers? We’re proud that our first clients found us, not the other way around. Of course, in the meantime, we have grown our sales and marketing team and expanded our outreach efforts by maintaining an active presence on social and other media and attending of relevant conferences — like Finovate. And we’re finding that word of mouth from customers who love our solutions is increasingly supporting our efforts to win new customers.

Can you tell us about a favorite implementation or deployment of your technology?

Oberlechner: We have been receiving enthusiastic feedback from users on both sides of the Atlantic. It makes me and the team happy when they tell us that BehaviorQuant should be a mandatory tool in any decision-making process, when they emphasize how BehaviorQuant’s solutions help them to make better decisions in a systematic and sustainable way, and when they express their enthusiasm about how it helps them deepen their customer relationships.

But my personal favourite deployment of our technology is something that has only very recently come to market. It allows us to impact many more customers without them having to contact our friendly sales team first. Just in time for the 2023 fall season, we’ve introduced an all-new, self-service option for our financial and wealth advisors. They can now effortlessly get detailed information on our website and actively try out BQ Advisory. Then they can purchase single product uses for their work with clients. They can do this directly on the website, on a credit-by-credit basis. This self-service option and the ability to join on a credit basis alongside our attractive licensing offerings have made the of BQ Advisory much easier, especially for the many independent advisors who advise a limited number of clients. And it’s also great for advisors in large institutions who use us already and now want to easily show their colleagues what BehaviorQuant can do.

What in your background gave you the confident to respond to this challenge?

Oberlechner: I was initially trained as a clinical psychologist in Vienna and always have been fascinated by the differences between people and the way they make decisions. As a university professor for many years, I have focused on how people actually make financial decisions — and the fact that we are all different financial decision makers. I have been fortunate to work with dozens of the world’s leading financial institutions for my research, from Goldman Sachs to Merrill Lynch to UBS. My female cofounder, Dr. Gerlinde Berghofer, and I both have PhDs and strong backgrounds in behavioral science. We have spent years doing research at Harvard, MIT, and Columbia University. We have worked with and studied hundreds and thousands of investment decision makers, from top fund managers to banks, advisors, and financial clients. From academia, we moved first to Silicon Valley and now to Vienna to translate this research into turnkey behavioral technologies for investment professionals.

Our solutions are therefore based on our many years of scientific work with many of the world’s leading investment institutions. And we have gone to great lengths to empirically test their benefits. For example, we have systematically tested the predictive power of BQ Performance with professional portfolio decision makers. While their average annual performance was about 10%, the annual performance of those whom the system predicted would outperform was more than twice as high. To give another example, in a comprehensive study of wealth advisory clients, BQ Advisory identified clients at risk of churn with 90% accuracy. Compare this to the 50% accuracy without BehaviorQuant!

Left to right: Dr. Thomas Oberlechner (CEO, Founder) and Gerlinde Berghofer (COO, Co-founder) of BehaviorQuant at FinovateEurope 2023.

What is the fintech ecosystem like in Austria?  What is the relationship between techs, fintechs, and traditional financial services companies?

Oberlechner: Austria and Vienna have proven to be a fertile breeding ground for the specific type of fintech that BehaviorQuant offers. Vienna historically has played a large role in the sciences that generate a better understanding of individual and collective behavior, from Freud’s psychoanalysis to the Austrian School of Economics. After spending many years in San Francisco developing fintech, we felt very fortunate that the Austrian government offered us a generous grant to bring BehaviorQuant here. 

I would describe the fintech industry as friendly and highly innovative, with some already well-known international players with roots in Austria like n26 and Bitpanda. Collaboration between traditional financial institutions and fintech startups has been a major driver of innovation in the Austrian market. Established banks are turning to fintech partnerships to expand their service offerings, improve the customer experience, and stay competitive in the digital age. Vienna has become a bit of a fintech hotspot, attracting both local and international talent and investment. Fintech companies benefit from Vienna’s consistently high rankings in international surveys of capitals’ attractiveness. The city offers an ecosystem of co-working spaces, incubators, and accelerators that foster collaboration and help fintech startups succeed.

At BehaviorQuant, we maintain close personal relationships with many of Austria’s “traditional” financial firms and banks, and we also have a very active bridge to the U.S. based on our history and our strong network on both the East and West coasts.

You demoed at FinovateEurope in London earlier this year How was that experience?

Oberlechner: Wow! We are absolutely thrilled by the incredible response we’ve received for our products! The interest and the number of new connections we’ve made were really overwhelming. We received amazing support from the organizers throughout the conference, as well as during in the preparation stage for our participation and presentation. The feedback from participants gave us an incredible boost of confidence and motivation. Thanks again to the team for a great and wonderfully rewarding experience!

What are your goals for BehaviorQuant and what can we expect in the months to come?

Oberlechner: Our goal with BehaviorQuant is simple: we want financial decision makers around the globe to become better decision-makers though our systematic behavioral data and decision support. And we want to become the world’s leading provider of predictive behavioral data for financial professionals and investment companies.

I briefly mentioned that we recently launched a self-service payment option for our advisory solution. In the coming months, exciting new self-service options are in the queue for the analysis of financial professionals with BQ Performance. This will allow individual investment professionals to easily get started with a comprehensive analysis of their personal untapped performance potential, as well as possible behavioral bias and performance blockers — before using it in the wider context, for example, with their entire team or company. So stay tuned for our upcoming releases!

Photo by Alesia Kozik

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Fintech Funding: Curve raises $163M as fintech funding dries up


Financial super app Curve raised $163 million in a series C round this week, even as global fintech funding has dropped significantly.  Not only has funding dropped due to uncertain macroeconomic conditions and rising global interest rates, but the number of deals has also decreased. According to a July report by financial information and services […]


Union Credit Announces Collaboration with Your Money Further


  • Credit union marketplace Union Credit has announced a collaboration with financial resource network Your Money Further.
  • The partnership will enable users of Your Money Further to access the Union Credit Marketplace of pre-approved financing offers.
  • Union Credit made its Finovate debut earlier this month at FinovateFall.

Fresh of its debut at FinovateFall in New York last week, marketplace for credit unions Union Credit has announced a collaboration with financial resource network Your Money Further.

“This collaboration with Your Money Further demonstrates our commitment to expanding our reach to communities and creating a level playing field for credit unions, while also empowering consumers to accomplish their financial goals,” Union Credit Chief Revenue Officer and co-founder Barry Kirby said.

A CU Awareness company, Your Money Further helps consumers find the credit union that best suits their needs. Courtesy of the firm’s collaboration with Union Credit, credit unions in Your Money Further’s network will be able to access the Union Credit Marketplace. This will give the more than 12 million consumers who visit Your Money Further every year access to financing options from nearly 300 credit unions that are now eligible to join.

“Union Credit’s marketplace … (provides) our users wth firm, pre-approved offers of credit,” CU Awareness Executive Director Chris Lorence said in a statement, “eliminating the hassle and guesswork that comes with applying for a loan and empowering consumers to take commands of their finances.” Lorence added that the rising interest rate environment was a challenge that was making consumers increasingly anxious about their financial decision-making.

Union Credit gives consumers access to one-click credit offers embedded in their daily activities. The company’s marketplace enables credit unions to enter new markets both at the front end of purchases as well as part of a financing experience. Additionally, the marketplace gives credit unions the opportunity to boost loan volume and brand-awareness. Your Money Further users will be able to compare and choose offers and rates for home purchasing, equity loans and personal loans, and refinancing, as well as new and used auto loans – all from local credit unions looking to serve new credit-worthy members.

“Your Money Further is dedicated to empowering consumers to make financial decisions with confidence,” Lorence said, “and we’re here to help them learn more about the unique benefits of joining a credit union.”

CU Awareness is a subsidiary of Credit Union National Association (CUNA). Recall that CUNA announced just last month that it would merge with the other major credit union organization in the U.S., the National Association of Federally-Insured Credit Unions (NAFCU).

Headquartered in Santa Rosa, California and founded in 2022, Union Credit demoed its Always Approved Marketplace at FinovateFall 2023 this month. The startup has more than 130 million consumers in its publisher network and approved loan offers can be activated within 90 seconds. There is no cost to credit unions for participating in Union Credit’s marketplace. Co-founder Dave Buerger is Union Credit’s CEO.

Photo by Karolina Grabowska

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Lenders using AI-based underwriting must comply to CFPB guidance


The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has doubled down on adverse action requirements for lenders using AI-based underwriting with new guidance, marking a shift in tone from its previous guidance in 2022.   A CFPB blog post Tuesday echoed guidance issued in 2022, but largely focused on adverse action notices’ accuracy and specificity requirements, Brian Fink, partner at McGlinchey, told Auto Finance News, a sister […]


Brex, Ally roll out AI-driven chatbots


Ally Financial and Brex rolled out AI-driven virtual assistants this week. Ally debuted a customer representative assistant to help service team members aid clients more efficiently while Brex’s virtual assistant aims to help employees of commercial clients file and manage expense reports.  In the United States, more than 100 million consumers will use generative AI […]


Payments status updates comprise 80% of Citi queries


TORONTO — Eighty percent of queries across Citigroup’s 96-country network — which includes more than 200 million clients — are payment status queries.  Pre-validation capabilities could bring that number down for banks, Debopama Sen, co-head of global payments and receivables at the $2.4 trillion Citi, said at the Sibos 2023 event this week. As payments […]


iProov Integration Brings Liveness Detection to Ping Identity’s DaVinci Platform


  • iProov and Ping Identity announced a partnership that will bring liveness detection to Ping Identity’s DaVinci digital identity verification platform.
  • Liveness detection is a key component of facial biometric authentication to ensure that the person seeking access is both the right person and a real person.
  • Both iProov and Ping Identity are Finovate alums. iProov has won Finovate Best of Show awards on three separate occasions.

A new integration between fellow Finovate alums iProov and Ping Identity will enable users of Ping Identity’s DaVinci platform to deploy facial biometrics and liveness detection as part of their digital identity verification processes.

Per the partnership, iProov will deliver a DaVinci connector that integrates with its iProov Biometric Solution Suite. This will enable businesses and organizations to deploy technologies like liveness detection as part of their identity access and customer identity access management processes. Liveness detection is a key feature of facial biometric verification and authentication. It ensures that the individual seeking access is both the right person and a real person – not the product of spoofing techniques used by fraudsters and cybercriminals, techniques that range from simple photographs to deepfakes created by Generative AI.

iProov’s biometric verification solutions have been deployed by organizations from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to UBS Group AG.

“Many organizations across the globe are already using iProov facial biometric technology to verify the online identity of citizens, workforces, and customers more securely and effortlessly than ever before,” iProov Chief Product and Innovation Officer Joe Palmer said. “Partnering with Ping Identity will help us to expand our reach even further and we’re delighted to be bringing this integration to PingOne DaVinci.”

A Finovate alum since 2017, iProov has earned Finovate Best of Show awards on three separate occasions. The company most recently demoed its technology at FinovateEurope in 2021. At the conference, iProov showed how its Flexible Authentication solution combined two of the company’s innovations – Genuine Presence Assurance and Liveness Assurance – to ensure that organizations apply the appropriate level of verification for a given situation.

Founded in 2003 and headquartered in Denver, Colorado, Ping Identity made its Finovate debut in 2012. The company’s PingOne DaVinci solution is a vendor-agnostic, no-code, identity orchestration service. DaVinci streamlines the process of integrating and deploying identity verification solutions from a variety of vendors. The solution currently has more than 100 out-of-the-box connectors to services ranging from identity to automation.

Earlier this week, Ping Identity launched its PingOne for Customers Passwordless solution. The new offering helps companies migrate toward a secure, seamless, password-free digital experience for their customers.

Photo by cottonbro studio

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Top Takeaways on Open Banking from FinovateFall


Of all the takes I’ve heard about open banking over the past week, here is a great one I did not hear courtesy of The Finanser’s Chris Skinner: open banking is bad branding.

The core issue is that banking and finance is being ripped open by technologies to ensure better service, data enrichment, machine learning, more knowledge … but to achieve this, the service is no longer delivered by one company: a bank. It is delivered by multiple service providers through apps, APIs and analytics. That’s what Open Banking is all about. It just has the wrong name. We don’t want Open Banking. We want Closed Banking.

A typically heterodox take from Skinner and a prompt I would have loved to put to our open banking panelists at FinovateFall last week.

As it turned out, our conversation revolved around other issues – from the role of regulation to the differences in the evolution of open banking between countries and regions. But the same issues raised by Skinner this week were not far away. See for yourself in our brief summary of the top takeaways from our FinovateFall discussion.

User Experience Matters

One area of major agreement on the panel was that user experience was an undervalued aspect of the appeal (or lack thereof) of open banking. Imran Haider, Director of Product, Intuit Data Exchange, noted that the user experience for a customer connecting to their bank via an open banking flow can vary significantly. He cited the occurrence of everything from cumbersome flows to basic performance issues as obstacles to wider acceptance of open banking. “If we really want to unlock the power of customer permissioned data sharing,” Haider said, “then we need better standards and approaches on the UX side.”

Location Shapes the Market

Appreciating the way open banking is evolving differently across geographies was another key takeaway from our conversation on open banking. Florencia Ardissone, Head of Product, Customer Insights & ChaseNet Analytics, JP Morgan Chase, led with this insight. In places like the U.K., Europe, and Australia, open banking has evolved courtesy of a highly-engaged regulatory authority. By contrast, in countries like India, market forces have tended to lead, with the drive for greater financial inclusion often fueling innovation. As such, we should expect the evolution of open banking in the U.S. – however slow and sluggish – to develop based on the unique features of the U.S. banking system – including the massive number of players.

Open Banking Demands Identity Management

Skinner’s skepticism about consumer appetites for “open” banking is also a great way to understand another key takeaway from our Open Banking conversation: the idea that open banking is integrally linked to identity management. Sasha Dobrolioubov, Head of Partnerships at Persona, made the point that it critical that those financial institutions involved in open banking – the banks, the fintechs – need to have a “strong identity presence” to foster trust between would-be open banking consumers and providers.

Regulation Defines the Opportunity

The funny thing about the evolution of Open Banking in the U.S. is that has taken both the route of market-driven innovation as well as the path laid by regulators, particularly the CFPB. Kevin Jacques, Partner at Cota Capital, noted that the access to account data component of open banking evolved ahead of regulations. Jacques cited innovators – and Finovate alums – like Plaid, MX, and Finicity as examples.

That said, with pending CFPB regulations potentially limiting and restricting collection of account data based on a narrower view on consumer consent, innovation in this aspect of open banking is likely to be impacted.

Photo by Amina Filkins

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Cybersecurity a top risk, Sibos attendees say


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Goldman nears deal to sell Greensky to Sixth Street Group


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Transactions: NatWest taps AWS for personalized banking tool


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Bank of America launches AI-driven chatbot capabilities for commercial clients


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