UOB kicked off its inaugural The FinLab accelerator programme last week, with nine companies participating in a three-month programme focussed on the financial sector.
With over 300 participants from over 20 countries applying for the programme, e27 wrote up short profiles on the companies that made the cut.
Felix Tan, the Managing Director of FinLab, said the chosen companies cross the entire fintech spectrum because, “there is strength in diversity.”
He also said that a larger group of mentors work with companies on their specific goals and potential investors can “identify, from a broader spectrum of startups, and once done, they can start engagement over the course of our programme instead of meeting them for the first time on Demo Day.”
UOB’s FinLab is a joint venture project with Singapore’s Infocomm Investments Private Limited — a wholly-owned investment arm of the government’s Infocomm Development Authority.
Let’s meet the companies!
Co-founded by a relatively well-known name in Singapore’s blockchain circle, David Moskowitz, Attores is building smart contracts for the industry. Smart contracts are computer protocols that enforce the terms or performances of a given financial agreement.
The goal is to help make adoption easier and faster by improving the end-user experience.
Cardup is allowing users to use their credit card to make large payments that previously required bank transfers or cheques (the company uses rent payment as an example).
One perk the company advertises using the service as a way to rack up serious reward points that may have taken eons to accomplish through smaller daily transactions.
FinMitra is, in a word, a goal calculator and wants to be the go-to source for a client’s financial decisions and actions. On the website the startup uses the example of parents planning for their child’s graduation from a foreign university.
Users input the timeframe, the desired goal and are given customised investment advice according to personality type (high risk vs. conservative investor).
The startup provides a solution for banks to adhere to compliance requirements when they are recording messages on WhatsApp and WeChat, as they are obligated to do so in the US and Europe. The company is working towards a first-mover advantage for when the same rules are applied throughout Asia.
Nickel has developed a proof-of-concept mobile technology using the blockchain to help migrant workers send remittances to their family. Using the mobile app, Nickel is working to build a system to help the region’s SMEs facilitate foreign exchange payments efficiently and at a low FX rate.
The company previously participated in DBS’ Hotspot Accelerator that started in December.
SsinoConnect is a P2P car financing platform that opens up access for retail investors to invest in collateralised asset, while at the same time, reduces the down payment requirement for potential car owners in Indonesia. Run by a team of banking professionals, the company prides itself on its proprietary credit model and risk management framework.
Stock2Day wants to socialise and gamify the stock exchange for the mom-and-pop investor. It advertises its voting trends system and effective learning service via its Recommender System. The idea is to avoid risks and educate the average person on stock market investments.
The company is also developing a ‘Supervised Deep Learning’ algorithm that will analyse user behavior to recognise patterns and provide useful/accurate actionable predictions.
The Big Data and analytics consulting company targets medium-sized companies facing challenges in leveraging data to gain an advantage in the business world.
Consultants work with emerging companies in the telecom, e-business, securities, financial, pharmaceutical, systems development, manufacturing and transportation industries.
The company has built a cloud system for borrower evaluation aimed at non-bank lenders. It helps lenders with a credit scoring system, an all-in-one platform and uses automation to filter out the unnecessary or risky propositions.
All the offerings are web-based and can be localised easily. Plus TurnKey Lender is built with rules that can be easily fixed to a dynamic market. The company is pitching the growing popularity of non-bank lending in Asia as reason to be optimistic about future adoption rate.