How Many of These Microsoft Initiatives in FinTech Did You Know About?

In previous articles, we have reviewed the ways in which the financial industry giants are joining hands with FinTech to keep up with the pace of innovation in the market and stay relevant. However, banks are not the only ones to feel the urge of paying closer attention to FinTech. Microsoft recently announced in its official blog that it has acquired Mobile Data Lab, creator of the popular MileIQ app and an innovator in intelligent productivity solutions for mobile professionals.

Addressing the market need and describing the reasoning behind the acquisition, Microsoft shared in the blog that in the US alone, there are over 55 million small business employees, entrepreneurs and other mobile professionals. This self-directed workforce, as Mobile Data Labs calls them, is always seeking ways to reduce time and effort spent on administrative chores like mileage, expenses, time tracking and reimbursement. Mobile Data Lab offers a solution – MileIQ, the app takes advantage of sensors in modern mobile devices to automatically and contextually capture, log and calculate business miles, allowing users to confidently claim tax deductions. MileIQ is used by over 1 million mobile professionals and has been the top-grossing finance app in the iTunes store for 20 months straight.

Mobile Data Lab is the most recent example of Microsoft Corp’s engagement in FinTech. However, the company in recent years has taken other steps to get involved in the hot sector with some interesting examples.

A recent one is Microsoft's collaboration with Deutsche Bank to launch FinTech Labs in Berlin in Q4 2015 called Deutsche Bank labs, where Microsoft will be providing technology experience and resources. The lab in Berlin is a part of a larger five-year plan called Strategy 2020 to spend $1.07 billion in digital initiatives by the bank, with labs to be opened in three locations; Berlin, Silicon Valley and London.

One of the goals of the lab is to evaluate over 500 startups a year. Microsoft, as a partner of the lab, will be part of the group that eva ...

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