The FinTech Five – 23rd December 2022
Welcome to the FinTech Five, where we take a fortnightly look at the best articles, news, insights and features from our FinTech Wales members.
1. FinTech Wales feature in The Fintech Times: ‘Together Stronger: The Rise of Welsh Fintech’
The article reads: “One of the many absorbing storylines at this year’s FIFA World Cup was the arrival of Wales onto the world stage. They won hearts and minds with their return to the tournament after a 64-year wait.
Their achievement, inspired by Welsh values, truly demonstrates what a nation greater than the sum of its parts can achieve. Especially with strong leadership and a commitment to collaboration and teamwork. In that same spirit, those Welsh values and attitudes towards collaboration have helped to foster an economy which is open, supportive and competitive on a global stage. The country’s flourishing fintech sector is a prime example of this.
Today, the Wales tech sector is worth an estimated £8.2billion to the Welsh economy, with fintech generating £3.6billion in value in 2021/22. Wales is now considered one of the fastest-growing digital economies outside of London and continues to grow.
The growth of Fintech Wales:
FinTech Wales brings entrepreneurs, startups, scaling and enterprise organisations, tech suppliers, universities, higher and further education, schools and the public sector together, to create a fully inclusive ecosystem. It enables fintechs to succeed thanks to the availability of the best talent, skills and investment to make a tangible impact on the global and local stage.
In 2021, the organisation launched its unique accelerator programme The Foundry. It was designed to support and scale the next generation of fintech startups with partners Cardiff Capital Region, Principality, Admiral Pioneer and confused.com. The success of the programme has made huge steps to attract and support startups within Wales. It is also a significant factor in attracting international companies from all over the world to develop in Wales.
2. Cardiff-based contactless mobile payments firm Yoello is keen to put Wales on the ‘tech map’
Next, Yoello’s platform has been adopted in the US, Australia, Canada and Europe, as featured in The Telegraph.
The article reads: “Contactless mobile payments and ordering service Yoello was launched by a young Cardiff-based entrepreneur as a way of helping friends in the hospitality and retail sectors cope with the negative impacts of Covid.
Just two years on, the disruptive payments platform has been adopted in the US, Australia, Canada and Europe and is used by thousands of restaurants and hospitality venues including Burger King and Subway, as well as banking partners.
Yoello’s founder, Sina Yamani, felt so strongly about the global potential for his idea – also gaining ground in hotels, venues, bars, theatres and delivery services – that he dropped out of a computer science degree at Cardiff University to nurture it.
Yet it’s a decision the 26-year-old says he does not regret.
Looking back at a roller-coaster two years in which the firm has been named Wales Start-Up of the Year and its founder Young Entrepreneur of the Year, Sina says that his core aim of helping merchants with their payments and processes attracted expert advice.
“The Department for International Trade [DIT] has an incredible team that are dedicated to growing UK businesses on an international scale and maintaining the British as world leaders in trade, and to be honest, they were always great at providing any guidance I needed,” he says.
3. Credas Launches New Lettings Service
Next this week, Credas has designed a new Lettings service to help letting agencies reduce the time spent on onboarding and screening new tenants as well reduce their exposure to potential rogue landlords.
The new service comprises of two distinct products, a Tenancy Onboarding product and a Landlord KYC product.
Credas Tenancy Onboarding:
The Tenancy Onboarding product will allow a Letting Agent to quickly and remotely onboard a new tenant by gathering information from the prospective tenant such as ID documents, references, bank statements, guarantor details and then an automated series of checks will be run to determine the prospective tenants Right To Rent status, credit status, guarantor and employment status and collate the results in to an instant Tenant Report.
The second product line within the Credas Lettings service is the Landlord KYC product. This is an instant report, available with a single button click, which will provide a compliance deep dive on a Landlord, confirming their ID, their address, checking they are not impersonating a deceased person, confirming via HMLR that they own the property they are renting, checking their bank account, the disqualified directors data base, PEP’s and Sanctions lists, checking for any negative stories in the media and screening for fraud alerts.
4. Identitech announces new strategic partnership with onboarding platform, DocFlite
DocFlite is a software platform dedicated to managing and automating customer onboarding. The platform helps service-based companies to create and follow processes, manage onboarding documentation and ultimately streamline customer acquisition.
This partnership enables DocFlite customers to take advantage of Identitech’s world-class identity verification platform. With many service businesses needing to verify the identity of their customers during the onboarding process, this collaboration makes perfect sense for both brands and their customers.
DocFlite’s Founder and CEO, TJ Amas, had this to say about the partnership:
“SME’s, more than ever, need easy-to-adopt solutions to help improve their margins, reduce time and simplify their processes.
We have made it our mission to build a software platform that meets these needs.
Our partnership with Identitech means that we can now address the critical area of compliance, with KYC and AML tools for the legal and financial services sector; an area that we are very excited to explore.
I’m very much looking forward to working with the Identitech team and I’m just as excited by the collaboration of 2 Fintech Wales member businesses. This is exactly how it should be!”
5. New Sonovate research reveals that more than a quarter of UK’s businesses say ‘Banks won’t lend to us’
Last but not least this week, new research from Sonovate “exposes the difficulties businesses face accessing finance from mainstream lenders and how alternative solutions can plug the gap.”
“More than a quarter (26%) of business leaders surveyed have had difficulties accessing finance from main banks, over a third (38%) say that banks don’t understand their business needs and two in five (41%) think banks’ lending policies haven’t kept pace with modern business needs.
The research from embedded finance and payment solutions provider, Sonovate, follows a recent announcement from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). The regulator warned banks to improve their treatment of small business owners after a review found ongoing instances of lenders treating small businesses unfairly when it came to areas including a sustainable payment plan, identifying and supporting vulnerable customers, and ensuring fairness. Indeed, a third (35%) of those Sonovate surveyed said that banks provide them with no other service or support beyond lending.”
Richard Prime, co-founder and co-CEO at Sonovate, said:
“It is evident that business owners across the country are struggling to access finance through traditional means. On the whole, banks and mainstream lenders have not kept up with the needs of today’s businesses, and lack the agility, scalability and speed to provide organisations with critical funding.
Until Next Time
And that’s it for the FinTech Five this week. Thank you for reading, and don’t forget to join us fortnightly for more of the best content from across our FinTech Wales membership.