BankTech

Bringing AI into Expense Management – Interview with Fyle, YES FINTECH Accelerator Autumn Cohort Finalist

MEDICIResearch Analyst

Businesses typically lose 5% of their annual revenue to workplace fraud, estimates suggest – that amounts to global losses of $2.9 trillion, with falsification and exaggeration of expense reimbursements being one of the most commonplace causes.

Expense Management software has seen a healthy growth in adoption in the recent years. In 2016, about 50% of companies were using a dedicated platform for expense management. The year 2017 saw a growth of nearly 15% in the implementation of expense management software, Arif Khan, Fyle, shares. Khan adds that the use of expense management software will accelerate financial prudence in organizations in 2018. Detailed insights into violations, category-wise expenses, and the most preferred vendors for various expenses will allow finance leaders to make even more accurate forecasts.

“With the average manual expense report costing around $27, businesses can reduce processing costs by 3x after introducing an appropriate solution for expense management.” – Arif Khan, Fyle

The solution allows its clients to reduce their reimbursement cycle from 45 days to 15 days.

To dive into the vision and strategy of one of the innovators in the space, MEDICI Team had the pleasure of interviewing Yashwanth Madhusudan, the CEO of Fyle, an employee reimbursement and expense automation platform that links email, consumer apps, and other platforms to simplify recording, sharing & processing of expenses and invoices within an organization.

Fyle is one of the startups selected for the Autumn Cohort of YES FINTECH Accelerator (YFA). YES BANK, India’s fifth-largest private sector bank, has been a pioneer of several key technology innovations since its inception in 2004. Continuing to be at the forefront of technology innovation and endeavors, YES BANK along with MEDICI (formerly Let’s Talk Payments – LTP) and PwC India opened applications to select startups for the Autumn 2018 cohort of YES FINTECH Accelerator.

A total of 7 startups have been selected for the Autumn Cohort 2018, gaining an opportunity to get access to funding of $1 million – all without any upfront equity commitment. YES FINTECH Accelerator gives startups an unencumbered opportunity to innovate with the bank and leverage access to VCs, technology, and 20+ global markets through ecosystem partners.

Fyle-c13a35.png

MEDICI Team: Yash, thank you for joining us for the conversation. Can you tell us about Fyle?

Yashwanth Madhusudan: Sure, my pleasure. Fyle is an intelligent platform for businesses to manage employee claims. Fyle uses AI to automate extraction of expense related information from invoices and ensures that the expense is compliant with company policy.

MEDICI Team: Tell us about the use case(s), which you’re targeting at YES FINTECH Accelerator?

YM: The use case we are targeting as part of the YFA is for YES BANK employees to use Fyle to record T&E, mobile, local conveyance, and other claims with real-time enforcement of YES BANK’s policies and integration with their accounting system.

Additionally, we are also exploring partnerships on a number of fronts including corporate cards and API integrations.

MEDICI Team: Do you think YFA is different from other accelerators? How?

YM: Yes – it is very well-structured and the preparatory was work done even before the program started. It helped us zero in on a good use case and identify key stakeholders.

MEDICI Team: How important are partnerships with FI as a part of your strategic roadmap?

YM: Partnerships on the corporate banking front are extremely strategic to be able to reach a large market and have a more holistic offering.

**MEDICI Team: **What were your expectations from the accelerator and can you describe your experience so far?

YM: We were expecting to improve the product and make it more enterprise-friendly and our experience so far has been fantastic. All the stakeholders have been generous with their time and helped us understand the enterprise use case.

MEDICI Team: What led you to apply to YFA? Can you describe your application experience?

YM: We had heard great things about YFA from the earlier batch. The entire application process was very smooth and well designed.

MEDICI Team: How do you see the future of digital automation in India?

YM: We are extremely bullish about digital automation. We operate in an area that was dominated by paper-based records and have seen a major shift by Indian companies to adopt modern technologies and digital automation to make their employees’ lives easier.

MEDICI Team: How do you think the Bank-FinTech collaboration is changing in India?

YM: It is fantastic to see YES BANK collaborating with FinTech companies to make life better for their users.

MEDICI Team: What is the most transformative change coming to your industry in the next 3-5 years?

YM: I believe artificial intelligence will play a big part in simplifying traditional business processes in the near future.

MEDICI Team: What milestones do you have for the company in the next year?

YM: In 2018, our goal is to grow the usage of Fyle platform by 10X.

Learn more about Fyle at fylehq.com

Sumit Gilitwala

MEDICIResearch Analyst

An economist and management graduate, Sumit Gilitwala is currently associated with MEDICI – Global FinTech Market Network as a Research Analyst. Sumit helps banks and other financial institutions with their Digital and FinTech Strategy through their innovation programs. He is also closely associated with the research team at MEDICI and is interested in upcoming FinTech trends. In the past, he has worked with venture capital funds for fundraising and PE investments.\ \ Working with different teams over a period of time, he has built expertise in research, economic forecasting, business strategy, private equity valuation, digital strategy, and program management.