October 7, 2015
Today, Let’s Talk Payments (LTP) followed the first day of FinDEVr 2015 in San Francisco. FinDEVr 2015 features a unique, dual-track agenda over two days that is centered around 20-minute, fast-paced presentations of more than 60 companies. Each presentation showcases a new tool, platform, API or case study designed to help FinTech developers create better innovations faster.
There is no other conference that offers this powerful blend of content. It was quite a big event with international and domestic companies exposing themselves for an audience of tech professionals. Starting 8:00 AM, the event has an intense schedule with companies and guests networking, watching demos and pitching to potential clients or investors, etc. The hallmark of the event is its orientation towards the tech audience—developers, CTOs, people who build things, etc. Having experience attending FinTech oriented events and listening mostly marketing and business development people, this event definitely was unique—the stage was taken by those who usually stay at the back office.
FinDEVr is the only conference focused exclusively on the builders of financial and banking technology. To get the feel of the event flow and organization, read more here. Having a tight schedule of meetings and presentations to attend, Let’s Talk Payments had an exciting day of meeting a variety of companies focusing on security, banking, payments, etc.
The event gathered developers and builders from all over the world. LTP spoke to Ukrainian company Middleware that was showcasing Corezoid, a cloud operating system that allows companies to do less hardcoding and concentrate on business growth. Sergii Danylenko, Chief Marketing Officer at Middleware shared with LTP that the company is looking for international expansion, particularly in the US. Headquartered in Ukraine, the company has PrivatBank as its biggest private investor—the largest bank in Ukraine. To learn more, click here.
During one of the intermissions, LTP met Praesidio, a cloud-based cybersecurity company formed by bankers and security experts to solve problems of breach detection, remediation and governance insight. Rani Khan (Director of Marketing), Sean Cassidy (CTO) and Edgardo Nazario (CEO) shared with us some insights regarding the current situation on cyberthreat tracking and risk management. Praesidio takes security from end-of-the-month reporting to real-time threat detection by raising alerts on unusual activities on a real-time basis. It assesses the current situation and provides critical information to the security team, board, auditors and regulators that a particular financial institution is actively managing. To learn more, click here.
While on the security page, another company we had an opportunity to meet was the Sweden-based BehavioSec Inc. that focuses on a different aspect of security. The company represents an interesting combination of behavioral science, math and technology. BehavioSec transforms behavior into a transparent additional level of security by monitoring the way users interact with their devices in real time. The interaction pattern is contextualized. Technology can recognize if a conflicting user is operating a device by monitoring the environment, rhythms and interactions patterns that are unique to a particular user. The technology is currently deployed at over 20 retail banks protecting over 11 million users and over 500 million transactions per year. The level of accuracy is 99.7%. To learn more, click here.
LTP also had the pleasure of meeting Matthew Goldman, Founder & CEO of Walla.by. Walla.by offers an intelligent way of credit card usage for those who have more than two cards and have a hard time choosing which one will give the best rewards at a particular use case. There is always a best card to use in every transaction and Walla.by helps to make a smart choice. Matthew also shared with LTP that before the acquisition by Bankrate, Inc., they had more than 100,000 users. To learn more, click here.
VP Sales of Kontomatik Peter Hiekmann presented Konto X, a leading provider of the banking API. Kontomatik shared with LTP the company's plans to launch operations in three more countries on its way to international expansion. Services provided by the Konto X API are mostly aimed for the banks with competitive products, online lenders that are looking to optimize loan-issuing processes and startups that want to build their apps around a supreme technology. To learn more, click here.
Meeting with Deluxe Corporation gave valuable insights about the paper checks and e-checks market in the US. Dean Tribble, VP of Deluxe, shared with LTP that financial institutions process 20 billion of paper checks worth $30 trillion every year in the US. According to the data shared by the company, Deluxe processes 1 million e-checks worth $4 million a year. The customer base of the company includes nearly 4.6 million businesses, around 5,600 financial institutions and 6 million individual customers. Even though the relative share of e-checks in comparison to paper checks is not significant, e-checks have a great potential and market for expansion. To learn more, click here.
Meeting with Jeff Thorness, President of the Forte Payment Systems, left us excited about the leading provider of innovative electronic payment solutions. With approximately 29,000 satisfied merchants and extensive experience in the government, property management and utility sectors, Forte helps organizations of all sizes to manage and perfect their payment operations. The company is small enough to be customer-centered (120 employees) as well as very developer-oriented. Forte offers a broad range of solutions for collecting and sending payments electronically in addition to comprehensive and modern APIs to allow developers to build out additional capabilities. To learn more, click here.
One of the most relevant companies due to the recent deadline on EMV implementation that we had a chance to speak with was EVO Snap, a one-stop shop for application integration, merchant underwriting and payment processing. EVO Snap offers a turnkey solution to EMV-enabled merchants. Peter Osberg, SVP of EVO Snap, shared with LTP that one of the biggest challenges on the way to EMV implementation is the massive amount of training required. EVO Snap successfully operated for 25 years and provides a seamless solution for 600,000 merchants. To learn more, click here.
LTP met a lot more companies during the first day of the event and will continue with some quick updates on some of the profiles. Wednesday, October 7, is day two and we are going to cover it live on Twitter. Follow @LetsTalkPayments now and do not miss out on the valuable insights provided by the leaders of the industry.