FinDEVr 2014 Last Chance for Early-Bird Tickets!

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FinDEVr San Francisco 2014 — our first event ever focused on fintech developers — is less than three weeks away and we are getting very excited! 

After months of anticipation, we’ve announced the full presenter roster and action-packed two-day agenda. The show is going to be an incredible showcase of the tools, platforms and APIs that are being used to build the next generation of fintech innovation.

Tickets are selling quickly ahead of the early-bird ticket deadline this Friday (register now to save) and we’re expecting a crowd of 400-500 innovators. 

In case you’re curious, here is a small sample of the organizations that are attending:

  • American Express
  • Ameriprise Financial
  • Avoka
  • Backbase
  • BancVue
  • BehavioSec
  • BlackRock
  • Bloomberg
  • Bluefin
  • C-SAM
  • Capital One
  • Cardflight
  • CIBC
  • Cloud Lending
  • Crosslink Capital
  • Devonshire Investors
  • Diebold
  • Eshtapay
  • E*TRADE
  • EVO Snap
  • Exchange Bank
  • Experian
  • Filene
  • Financial Apps
  • Finicity
  • First Republic Bank
  • Fiserv
  • Forte Payment Systems
  • Franklin Templeton
  • GoDaddy
  • Google
  • GTE Financial
  • Incomm
  • Intuit
  • Javelin Strategy
  • LexisNexis
  • Life.SREDA
  • MACU
  • MasterCard
  • Mergermarket
  • Mifos Initiative
  • Modo
  • OnDeck
  • Paradigm4
  • PayNearMe
  • PayPal
  • PSCU
  • SF Fire CU
  • StockTwits
  • Target
  • TD Ameritrade
  • Tradier
  • USAA
  • UW Credit Union
  • VentureBeat
  • Visa
  • Wells Fargo
  • Western Union
  • Worldpay
  • Xero
  • Xignite
  • Yodlee
  • And many more!

If you and/or your technical colleagues are interested in attending to learn about the latest innovations for fintech builders, tickets are on sale at the early-bird discount of $100 off through Friday September 12th.

We’ll see you there!

FinDEVr San Francisco 2014’s VC sponsor is: Life.SREDA

FinDEVr San Francisco 2014 is partners with: BankersHub, BayPay Forum, California Bankers Association, fin-tech.org, Hotwire, Mercator, PaymentWeek & The Paypers

Fintech Fundings: 10 Startups Raise $40 Million This Week Bringing August Total to $410 Million

The last week of August was somewhat slower, but still included 10 new rounds, 3 of which went to Finovate alums. The total raised was $39.5 million. August concludes with a whopping $410 million raised, $215 million in equity and $200 million in debt (see previous posts for details). 
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Equity raised in order of deal size (22 Aug through 28 Aug 2014):
Financial services kiosks
Latest round: $25 million
Total funding: Unknown
Tags: Unbanked, kiosks, billpay, card issuing, prepaid, Florida
Source: FT Partners

Ayondo

Social trading platform
Latest round: $4 million
Total raised: More than $4 million
Tags: Investing, social trading, Germany, Finovate alum
Source: Finovate
Korean bitcoin exchange
Latest round: $3 million
Total funding: $4 million
Tags: Cryptocurrency, bitcoin, payments, Korea
Source: Crunchbase 
Socure
Identity-management technology
Latest round: $2.5 million
Total funding: $6.7 million
Tags: Security, identity protection, New York, Finovate alum

Source: Crunchbase
Investment property lender
Latest round: $1.8 million
Total funding: $6.5 million (includes $4.7 million in debt)
Tags: Lending, credit, mortgage, real estate, Texas
Source: Crunchbase
Turkish online payments provider
Latest round: $1.4 million
Total funding: $3.2 million
Tags: Payments, mobile, online, cards, Turkey
Source: Crunchbase 
Knox Payments (See them debut at FinovateFall 2014 – 23/24 Sep)
Latest round: $625,000
Total funding: $1.6 million
Tags: Payments, acquiring, Virginia, Finovate alum
Source: FT Partners
Japanese digital invoicing startup
Latest round: $600,000
Total funding: $600,000
Tags: Invoicing, accounting, SMB, Japan
Source: Crunchbase 
Valuations of small and medium private businesses
Latest round: $300,000
Total raised: $400,000
Tags: SMB, business, investing, Netherlands
Source: Crunchbase 
Real estate virtual tour platform
Latest round: $300,000
Total funding: $300,000
Tags: Real estate, marketing, design, Chicago
Source: Crunchbase

Fintech Fundings: 75 Companies Raise $900 Million in July 2014

According to FT Partners, fintech companies raised $903 million in July 2014, $678 million in equity and $225 million in debt. Only the fundings during the last week of July are listed below (in alphabetic order). For all 75 deals in July, see the FT Partners database.

Active Hours
Alternative lender for short-term loans
Latest round: $4.1 million
Total raised: $4.1 million
Tags: Lending, credit, underbanked, unbanked, loans, Palo Alto, California
Source: FT Partners

AvantCredit
Online alt-lender
Latest round: $300 million ($75 million equity, $225 million debt)
Total raised: $554 million ($329 million equity, $225 million debt)
Tags: Lending, underwriting, personal loan, SMB, Chicago, Illinois
Source: FT Partners

BeanStalk
Online tax prep
Latest round: $2 million
Total raised: $2 million
Tags: Tax preparation, fee-based services, OnSwipe (acquired), Salt Lake City, Utah
Source: FT Partners 

Exchange Corporation
Japanese consumer loan marketplace lender
Latest round: $3.3 million
Total raised: $3.3 million
Tags: Lending, credit, consumer loans, P2P, person-to-person, crowdfunding,Tokyo, Japan
Source: FT Partners

FreshBooks
Cloud accounting
Latest round: $30 million
Total raised: $30 million
Tags: Accounting, money management, SMB, invoicing, bill payment, Toronto, Canada
Source: FT Partners 

Privio
Online marketplace for private mortgage loans
Latest round: $3.8 million
Total raised: $5.9 million
Tags: Mortgage, lending, underwriting, alt-lending, California
Source: FT Partners 

Rong360
Chinese lending search engine
Latest round: $60 million
Total raised: $60 million
Tags: Lending, personal loans, lead generation, Bejing, China
Source: FT Partners 

Thinknum
Analytics for loan underwriting & investments
Latest round: $1 million
Total raised: $1 million
Tags: Analytics, enterprise, underwriting, investing, financial analysts, New York City, Finovate alum
Source: Finovate

TipRanks
Investment analyst ratings
Latest round: $3 million
Total raised: $3.7 million
Tags: Investing, analytics, Tel Aviv, Israel, Best of Show Finovate alum
Source: Finovate

Volabit
Bitcoin exchange platform
Latest round: $250,000
Total raised: $250,000
Tags: Cryptocurrency, San Mateo, California
Source: FT Partners 

Wonder Technology
eGiftcard provider
Latest round: $800,000
Total raised: $800,000
Tags: Giftcards, prepaid, merchants, SMB, Burlingame, California
Source: FT Partners

ZipZap
Enables merchants to accept cash for online purchases
Latest round: $1.1 million
Total raised: $2.7 million
Tags: Merchants, acquiring, POS, payments, underbanked, SMB, Yorba Linda, California
Source: FT Partners

2015 Digital Banking Strategic Planning (Part 1)

imageI was on a call today with the digital strategy committee of a large U.S. bank. It was clear from their line of questioning that they are grappling with how to prioritize among the many major opportunities on the digital side.

I won’t list any of the specific topics here, but you could guess most of them (though one would surprise you I think). But the conversation got me thinking about what I’d recommend for next year if I was working in a bank, credit union or consumer fintech company.

In semi-prioritized fashion, here are my first three recommendations for 2015. More will follow.

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1. Insurance
_______________________________________

How are you going to replace NSF fee income once the CFPB gets around to capping it? (Timing hint: There’s a big election in 27 months.) One place to look: Insurance. It’s one of the last frontiers for retail banks, especially in the United States. FinovateSpring 2014 alum Insuritas (demo here) says it can launch your very own insurance store within 90 days. So if you move fast enough, you could have this running by end of year.

______________________________________

2. Lifetime transaction archives
__________________________________

I believe digital services will increase bank loyalty two or three-fold. So instead of accounts turning over every 7 years or so, it will be 15 or 20 years for digital-first households. Why? Once banks come to their senses and start archiving all your transactions like Google does for email, it will be much more of a pain to move.

________________________________________

3. Subscription fees
___________________________________

Back to the Gmail example. How much could Google charge me now that I have 100,000 messages archived there? $100/year easy. Probably more. Banks should be thinking the same way. Get #2 done, then charge $4.95/mo for a Peace of Mind package that includes lifetime archives, mobile document/receipt capture, priority customer service, and so on.  

 

To be continued………..

Apple Touches Off First Wave of Mobile Banking Biometrics

image We’ve known this day was coming ever since Apple acquired AuthenTec two years ago for $350 million. That was real money back in the pre-Beats/Nest/Oculus days.

Monday, Apple made it official at its annual developers’ conference: The fingerprint authentication system built into the iPhone 5S (Touch ID) will open to outside developers in the next iOS update (v8.0 expected in mid-September). That means that app publishers, including banks, credit unions & wallet providers, will be able to use it to provide initial authorization into a secure app. 

image The new feature was demonstrated on stage by logging in to Mint (see inset, screen cap tweeted by Bradley Leimer Monday). In the demo, Mint users are prompted to use the touchpad to open the app (the small type says, “Please authenticate in order to proceed”). Users are also given a password option.

Most likely, banks will use Touch ID, as well as other handset-resident biometric systems (note 1) to deliver “read-only” access to data. It’s an approach that’s been catching on around the world even before Apple’s biometric wizardry. Citibank is the most recent to provide a no-login glimpse in its mobile app (called SnapShot), rolling it out nationwide two weeks ago (press release). It’s also used at Westpac (NZ), Commonwealth (AU), Bank of the West, City Bank of Texas and many more (note 2).

For anything transactional, such as a wire transfer, banks will likely require additional authentication (see our Nine Circles of Security).

And of course, these security changes will generally need to be optional for customers until they become commonly accepted practices. Most users are still extremely wary of security on mobile phones, even though it is a marked improvement over the desktop (note 3).

While it’s too early to know if any financial institutions will have it enabled by September, one fintech payment provider, CardFlight, wasted no time, announcing support for Touch ID just a few hours after the Apple keynote (note 4).

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Notes:
1. Celent’s Jacob Jegher showed me his facial recognition login on his Android phone (Samsung?) at last month’s FinovateSpring. Very cool, though he doesn’t have it enabled since it slows up the login process just slightly.
2. Malauzai Software powers more than 90 credit unions and banks alone (post).
3. See our latest report on Mobile Security (March 2014, subscription) for more info.
4. Cardflight will be showing off its latest tools at our first developer event, FinDEVr, 30 Sep 2014, in San Francisco.