We recently interviewed Ariel Timothy, Chief Strategy Officer for Aryza. Aryza is a pioneering technology company that work with our customers and partners to create and deliver solutions that improve the financial health and achieve their financial goals.

Ariel discusses the massive opportunity  for the company in Australia which was highlighted during COVID.  He notes what is absent within the market and how Aryza can help with communication between businesses and consumers..

To watch the full video please see below:




Enterprise Ireland were delighted to support the largest contingent of Irish Fintechs to have ever attended Intersekt in September. Intersekt is the premier Fintech event in Oceania and attracts over 1,000 participants from the Financial Services and Fintech sectors to the event which is held at the Grand Hyatt in Melbourne. In total six Irish companies participated, five of whom shared their world class insights and experiences in panel or fireside discussions:

Swoop CEO Andrea Reynolds, who flew in from the United Kingdom, opened the event with a fireside discussion with one of Australia’s most influential and respected Fintech advisors in Dr Dimitrios Salampasis. Andrea shared great insights around the current funding landscape and advice for SMEs and founders on accessing funding on a global perspective.

Transfermate, who provide B2B Global payments infrastructure for Banks, Fintech and Software providers and were recently crowned as Ireland’s newest Fintech unicorn participated in a panel which focused on global first approach to building a Fintech. Led by their APAC Director Vijay Rao the panel delved into considerations for new market entry including building culture, brand, and relationships and which also analysed the need for significant focus on market research, competitive analysis, and localisation of pricing strategy.

Wayflyer led by Stephen Duke, Head of Marketing and Growth for the firm who has grown the Australian business from one employee to over thirty in two years provided rich insights around the considerations from a lending technology and culture perspective in a panel of SME companies which included large Australian SME Challenger Bank Judo. The most compelling insight from Wayflyer was simple – ‘stick to your brew’ which referenced Amazon Jeff Bezos reference to a strategic focus on excellence in a primary function for the business before expanding to different products or markets

Fenergo, who have a well-established Australian presence, currently employing over 130 people across their Melbourne and Sydney offices joined Deborah Young from Regtech Association in a discussion around Regtech. Led by their ANZ Sales Director, Eoin Keating the discussion delved into the shifting landscape of the Regtech industry. The panel explored the need to personalise solutions and drive more effective customer experience outcomes for users in order maximise returns for clients, whilst for Regtech companies their ability to differentiate is based on an ability to also provide trusted advice and support.

One of the newest Fintechs into the Australian market is credit and debt solutions management company Aryza, who were led by their Chief Strategy Officer Ariel Timothy in a panel discussion on Embedded Finance. Aryza’s ‘end to end’ solution has a particular strength in the collections journey and Ariel provided insights around the changing landscape, and recognition of the important role that technology companies can play in supporting clients from a financial education and inclusion perspective.

Outside of Intersekt, the teams also participated in many other events, aimed at supporting with potential buyer engagement. Enterprise Ireland facilitated multiple show-case style events with leading organisations Grant Thornton, Pitcher Partners in the Accounting Advisory space, Australia’s largest Broker Aggregator Loan Market, and the largest Australian Bank for SMEs in National Australia Bank. During these events, clients pitched directly to key decision makers in a ‘shark tank’ style format. Positively there were several potential partnership opportunities identified, and future collaboration between Enterprise Ireland and each of the organisations is also highly likely.

To close the week, client companies also participated in an informative event with Invest Victoria at their offices in Melbourne, where Enterprise Ireland’s newly appointed Advisory panel member Brad Gofman led a panel discussion which included Victorian Government’s John Bailey, and Antony Burrows who leads NAB’s Innovation division to discuss the Victorian Fintech ecosystem, investment, partnering and talent amongst many other key themes.

Overall, the week provided a great opportunity for our clients to collaborate across the Australian ecosystem, connect with potential buyers and partners, and highlight Irish Fintech capability.  Irish Fintech continues to go from strength to strength in the Australian market with strong year on year growth and employment hitting unprecedented levels. Enterprise Ireland support for participation at events like Intersekt is another great example of how the team are working with clients to drive brand awareness and commercial opportunity. We look forward to participating at next year’s event with the intention to have even stronger levels of participation!

 

 

 

 

We were delighted to see a number of Irish companies physically visiting our local market during the month of September. One such company was Origina, who presented, in person, to our Sydney and Melbourne advisory panels. Origina is a third party software maintenance services provider specializing in IBM software. With customers like NAB, CBA and BHP already in Australia, they used this visit to increase awareness of their offering locally while getting some valuable insights from our panel members. While here Origina also had a great few days at the Gartner Symposium on the Gold Coast where CEO, Tomás O’Leary, spoke to a packed room of interested local stakeholders.

Enterprise Ireland, in conjunction with the Embassy of Ireland, also hosted a lunch in the Ambassador’s residence for Origina where Tomás and team had the opportunity to interact with CIO’s and senior stakeholders from numerous Federal Government agencies. Overall a great trip and an excellent sign of normal business being resumed with Irish CEO’s spending much more time in this market.

 

 

One of the newly crowned Irish unicorns (start-ups with a >$1bn valuation) in the Fintech space – Transfermate – added Bank Australia to their local customer list. After looking far and wide for a payments platform to seamlessly integrate with their SAP Concur Accounts Payable system, Bank Australia chose Transfermate’s world leading global payments infrastructure as-a-service.

Transfermate has been working with Australian SME’s & banks since 2017 to better enable international B2B payments and receivables transactions. A wonderful example of Irish innovation quietly solving some of business’ major pain points globally.

To read more, click here

We were delighted to see that Zai were award winners at last month’s Fintech Australia ‘Finnies’ Awards which recognizes the best of Australian Fintech’s.   

The team were successful in winning the ‘Deal of the Year’ award which recognized last year’s merger of Australian owned Assembly Payments, whose platform automates complex payments workflows, and Irish company CurrencyFair, a global cross-border payments platform.  

The company is focusing its mid-market and enterprise-level offering initially on the Australian market, where its Assembly Payments customer base gives it a strong foothold, while in parallel ramping up its capability to launch in the UK, USA and Asia in 2022 and with the number of employees expected to grow from 170 currently to 450 by 2025. 

Well done to all of the team! 

Enterprise Ireland showcased Irish innovation at SLUSH, a global-leading event for start-ups and the largest of its kind in the Nordics, which took place in December 2021 in Helsinki.

Due to the pandemic, Slush 2020 could not go ahead and a series of virtual events were instead put in place. Thus, in 2021 there was huge excitement to attend the event, which was held at a reduced capacity.

The Nordics team were lucky to be joined by 6 Irish companies as well as Minister Robert Troy. Minister Troy opened our attendance at the event with a reception at Ambassador Ruth Parkin’s residence in Helsinki. The reception brought together the Irish business community in Finland.

Minister Troy also visited Meneva, a Finnish taxi company, who deploy Enterprise Ireland client iCabbi’s taxi dispatch software.

Finally, before departing, the Minister accompanied us to Slush. He saw the IRELAND@SLUSH stand and was given a tour of the largest gathering of venture capital on the planet. Slush is renowned for it’s unique aesthetic and the pictures and videos below capture Minister Troy’s visit to Helsinki.

Enterprise Ireland at SLUSH 2021, Helsinki – YouTube

Minister Robert Troy attends SLUSH 2021, Helsinki – YouTube

Dee Coakley from Boundless at SLUSH 2021, Helsinki – YouTube

Gerard Carton from PlantQuest at SLUSH 2021, Helsinki – YouTube

Enterprise Ireland’s Hugh McCarthy at SLUSH 2021, Helsinki – YouTube

 

 

 

 

Enterprise Ireland will lead a delegation of 6 companies to Slush in Helsinki.

Slush is Northern Europe’s largest start up conference, bringing together the most influential players in the European Ecosystem and beyond.

Take a look at our company profiles at the link below.

 

IRELAND@SLUSH2021

Irish government supported company Swoop works with over 1,000 providers to help small and medium size businesses access funding;

Following success in the UK, Ireland, and Australia, business funding and savings platform Swoop is now available in Canada. The company, which is backed by Enterprise Ireland, enables businesses to easily discover the right funding solutions for their needs. Swoop’s advanced algorithm analyzes capital opportunities available to companies across loans, equity and grants, and matches them with relevant funding solutions – simplifying and speeding up access to finance for a business.

“Swoop is more than just a technology, it is a pathway to capital. Finding the right funding solution can be a daunting and complex process for companies seeking to grow, so our platform and our team are ready to help guide and manage a company’s application,” said Daire Burke, Head of Canada, Swoop. “We’re very excited to now offer Swoop to the Canadian market. It has proven successful in Australia, the UK, and Ireland, and we are confident that it will become an invaluable tool for Canadian companies looking to raise and save money.”

The Swoop platform works with more than 1,000 funding providers from mainstream banks, alternative lenders, venture capital funds, angel investors, and grant agencies to save business owners time in researching funding opportunities. Instead, they are provided with a personalized list of funding providers to choose from. The platform provides users with a centralized location for all of the financial resources, information, and advice they need right at their front door. 

“Swoop is a fast-growing finance solution that enables small and medium-sized businesses to access funding that is critical to their growth and success,” said Kevin O’Donnell, Senior Vice President, Enterprise Ireland. “Launched in the UK and Ireland in 2018, Swoop is an extraordinary example of an Irish company that has dominated the financial sector in international markets. The company saw a gap in the market for a consolidated open banking and funding reference provider in Canada and together we’ve been able to develop the partnerships needed for it to successfully service businesses throughout the country.”

Aside from its funding services, Swoop also assists companies in the search to find saving opportunities through its open banking technology which enables firms to see potential savings and switch their expenditure on banking, foreign exchange, utilities, and insurance. Guidance is provided for, among other things, business current accounts, international payments, energy, bad debt protection and recovery, and insurance. Swoop was named in the ‘Hot Ten’ list for the Global Fintech 50 for 2019.

To find out more about Swoop’s services: https://swoopfunding.com/ca/

Every year more than 600,000 international students travel to Canada to continue their studies in higher education. When planning a move to Canada as a foreign student, tax organization is key – this is where Sprintax comes in. Sprintax specifically caters to the more than two million non-residents visiting North America each year to live, work, and study. Sprintax also partners with universities and employers to ensure non-resident employees, students, and scholars are taxed correctly on income earned. With the support of Enterprise Ireland, Sprintax partners with eight of the top 10 universities in the United States. 

“Sprintax is a unique SaaS solution,” says Sprintax Commercial Director, Joanna Murphy. “Today, we are proud to report that our solution supports non-residents in Canada as well as the US with every tax requirement they may have and ensures full compliance with their tax obligations.”

Sprintax Canada offers the only online self-preparation software for non-resident Canadian tax return preparation. To access their completed, fully compliant tax return, students complete a short questionnaire, answering questions about their income, deductions, and eligible tuition expenses. After questionnaire completion, the Sprintax software automatically generates ready to download tax forms. Users are also guaranteed to receive their maximum Canadian tax refund, as the software ensures the claim of any qualifying federal and provincial tax relief deductions.

“It’s clear that Sprintax is a unique solution and there is simply no other product like it on the market,” says Shaun Ryan, Market Executive – Canada, Enterprise Ireland. “It is fantastic to see such innovation and global ambition displayed by an Irish company. Sprintax Canada is a textbook example of how much can be achieved when Irish entrepreneurial minds come together.”

Sprintax Canada also generates complete federal and provincial tax and employment documents (including Federal TD1, Provincial TD1, TP-1015.3-V forms, and more). With Sprintax, payroll departments can easily manage the tax profiles of their international employees all in one place through a user-friendly dashboard.

Sprintax Canada determines tax residency status, calculates the correct income tax withholding for each non-resident and outlines whether they are eligible for any tax treaties or deductions.

The software is the brainchild of Terry Clune and part of the Clune Technology Group (formerly the Taxback Group) – an organization headquartered in Ireland, employing over 1,500 staff members across 33 countries around the world. Clune Technology Group is the parent company to Ireland’s most successful and groundbreaking Fintech brands including TransferMate Global Payments, Immedis, Taxback International, and Taxback.com.

Sprintax’s North American operations are led by Vice President Enda Kelleher. Based in the company’s New York City office, Kelleher leads the Sprintax team all over the US and Canada to speak with staff and students at universities and trade shows – offering workshops, webinars, and demos on US and Canadian taxes for non-residents.

“We are all incredibly proud of Sprintax,” Kelleher continues. “To date we have partnered with eight of the top 10 universities in the US – this is an outstanding achievement. Our expectation is that our product will continue to go from strength to strength in the coming years and exhibit the same phenomenal patterns of growth in Canada that the company has already displayed. We are excited about the prospect of spreading our wings and developing even further in Canada.”

In the past, tax organization has always been a headache for the 600,000 students new to North America. Sprintax has recognized that issue and provides a simple and comprehensive solution to non-resident students as the software caters directly to their tax needs.

With the FinTech sector’s recent boom in the UAE and across the wider region, Irish start-up DX Compliance launched its operations in the Middle East from its new base in the UAE. The Dublin-headquartered company is fast becoming one to watch in the global RegTech space where its operations have expanded into five international markets.

Operating out of the country’s capital, Abu Dhabi, DX introduced its disruptive technology and solutions to the rapidly expanding financial market. Working with banks and FinTech companies, DX Compliance invented AI-enabled anti-financial crime and compliance software solutions with easy to use features and top-of-the-line capabilities to effectively identify and manage regulatory and financial risks.

“With UAE topping the list of countries in the Middle East with the highest number of financial technology start-ups, we knew this would be the best market for us to begin our journey from. After successfully launching in the UAE and securing a place in the two biggest start-up accelerator hubs in the UAE, we are looking to expand our offer into the wider MENA region. This move will create several R&D jobs in Ireland where DX puts a high focus in hiring young talent. Following through our milestones achieved, we continue to help our customers benefit from the unique insights of our proprietary machine learning capabilities and user focused approach” said Simon Dix, CEO & Founder of DX Compliance.

The move to the region has been supported by Enterprise Ireland, the Irish Government’s trade and innovation agency. Their involvement has contributed to the successful expansion of DX Compliance into the Middle East market. This includes the Dubai International Financial Center’s (DIFC) FinTech Hive as well as Abu Dhabi Global Market’s (ADGM) Hub71.

Welcoming DX Compliance to the region, Stephen Twomey, Enterprise Ireland’s Senior Market Advisor said, “The FinTech scene across the Middle East is ever evolving and fast emerging with plenty of opportunities for growth and innovation. We’re delighted to see DX Compliance successfully launch in the UAE and become part of the UAE’s largest start-up accelerators, making it the very first Enterprise Ireland backed FinTech start-up to secure a position at Hub 71 and DIFC’s FinTech Hive.  Irish FinTech is well received in this region for its ground-breaking innovation, technology and ability to overcome challenges.”

Daniel Dorr, Co-Founder of DX Compliance said “The support we gain from Enterprise Ireland along with our collaborations with Universities in Abu Dhabi and Dublin opens doors for more growth and employment during unprecedented times. The collaboration between our two offices which represent two ecosystems, will help us expand our company and portfolio at a rapid level leading to more job opportunities and delivering value back into our respective ecosystems”.

“Our expansion into the UAE comes as we have just launched DX Version 2.0, our latest version of our transaction monitoring software, which takes the fight against financial crime to a whole new level. Our new and improved features enable banks, FinTech firms and other providers of financial services to effectively identify and manage their regulatory and financial risks, lower operational costs and focus their attention on their revenue drivers with a peace of mind”.

In addition to successfully launching in the UAE, DX Compliance has strengthened its leadership team by appointing two C-Suite titles. Razi Ardakani, financial compliance and FinTech expert, was appointed as Head of Growth and will lead the company’s expansion across the Middle East and drive global expansion strategies. Appointed as DX Compliance’s Chief Product Officer, Prem Ipe has over 15 years of experience leading data analytics teams. Prem was also previously nominated as one of the top 30 leaders in Australia.

DX Compliance has a successful track record in providing market-leading anti-financial crime products that offer insights into individuals’ and commercial entities’ financial behaviour. They generate value for their clients by uncovering suspicious transactions that usually go undetected by more traditional forms of anti-financial crime tools.

Considering DX Compliance’s expertise and journey of growth, the start-up was selected to be part of RegLab, the UAE’s specially tailored regulatory framework which provides a controlled environment for FinTech participants to develop and test innovative solutions.

The highly respected financial regulator of the city-state Singapore, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has last December awarded four digital banking licenses. These licenses will allow entities including non-bank entities to provide banking services including deposit taking and lending in Singapore. As a regional fintech powerhouse, the liberalisation of its banking industry has been hotly anticipated by big players in the world of finance and technology.

Two of the licenses are categorized as “full”, in that they allow consumer banking. One has gone to a partnership of local ride-hailing super-app Grab and telco conglomerate SingTel, where both companies have large customer bases and regional activities across Southeast Asia.

The other has gone to Nasdaq-listed internet powerhouse Sea group, which has had a blockbuster year of growth from its e-commerce platform Shopee (well able to hold its own against Amazon and Alibaba), it’s gaming division Garena and existing fintech division SeaMoney.

The remaining two are “wholesale”, or business banking licenses, awarded to Ant Financial (the fintech affiliate company of Alibaba Group, best known for their Alipay app) and another to a consortium of Greenland Financial, Linklogis & Beijing Co-Op Equity Investment.

Singapore follows a wider regional pattern, two years after the Hong Kong Monetary Authority who released eight digital banking licenses. Taiwan’s Financial Supervisory Commission also released three and Malaysia is expected to issue up to five sometime later this year. The Philippines has also indicated it will accept applications for online only banks. The authorities in Indonesia however, seeking to encourage consolidation of a fragmented banking sector, is not expected to issue any further licenses. However numerous small or struggling local lenders have been acquisition targets for ambitious Fintechs, while larger banks are experimenting with digital-only propositions.

However, they face a challenging marketplace in Singapore, where incumbents are deemed to be very digitally capable. Covid-19 forced them to bolster their digital proposition, and at the retail level almost all transactions, including account openings, can be performed online. DBS, the market leader, has won various accolades as the World’s Best Digital Bank, boasts over 7,500 engineers, with the CEO Piyush Gupta evangelizing the bank as a tech company in financial services.

The experience in Hong Kong and Australia seems to point that new entrants cannot only rely on a slicker app experience and marginally better deposit rates. They will need to tie in truly innovative products, services and integrations that are useful and targeted specifically at under-served sectors of the market.

In order to achieve this, new digital banks will have to have a robust, agile and secure technology stack incorporating the best technology partners in the game – and this is where the Irish Advantage is. Irish companies are already supporting many of the world’s most innovative digital banks and look poised to power the current wave of upstarts in Asia.

The Irish Capability

Daon is a world-leading mobile authentication and biometrics company. Established 20 years ago to serve the government sector and now a leader in financial services, they are one of the only FIDO certified biometrics companies, whose services are critical to the security of any digital banking offering. Daon are already working with some of the leading financial digital banks in the region – TONIK (the Philippines) and Mox (Hong Kong).

A comprehensive compliance offering, and seamless onboarding process, is central to offering customers an exceptional  and secure account opening experience. KnowYourCustomer’s KYC, KYB and onboarding platform is currently used by digital bank Neat in Hong Kong.  Know Your Customer notably won “Best Solution – Customer Onboarding” in the 2020 edition of the Regulation Asia Awards of Excellence.

Also in the onboarding space is Fenergo, the industry No.1 provider of Client Lifecycle Management (CLM) software solutions for financial institutions spanning capital markets and investment banking, commercial, business and retail banking, private banking and wealth management, and asset management. Fenergo CLM is an end-to-end platform that transforms how sell-side banks and buy-side firms manage clients – from initial onboarding to KYC/AML compliance, to client data management and ongoing lifecycle KYC reviews and refreshes.

With the uptake of digital banking solutions expected to experience exponential growth, Leveris’ cloud-native and real-time core banking system offers a 100% turnkey digital bank solution. A modular platform designed with scalability and reliability at its heart, Leveris helps fulfil ultra-rapid total deployment for innovative technology-driven banking solutions, digital at heart.

CR2 solutions provide innovative omnichannel banking software to banks across the world. CR2 makes self-servicing banking better through supplying ATM’s to mobile and from POS to the Internet. CR2 offer digital channels that provide personalised services built upon an integrated self-service digital banking platform known as ‘BankWorld’.

With compliance core to the reassurance needed to drive adoption of digital banking, Solgari’s omni-channel cloud communications platform provides communications and functionality through Microsoft Dynamics 365 within the CRM interface.

As Singapore embarks on its journey into digital banking, there is much to be learned and gained from the experience of companies who have helped other organizations venture into this space. A global technology hotspot, eight of the top 10 global software companies have their European headquarters in Ireland, making this a hotbed of innovation; innovation that empowers and enables.

To find out more about the #IrishAdvantage in Fintech, please reach out to talk.

Authors

Tiarnan McCaughan – Senior Market Advisor Fintech & Financial Services, Southeast Asia

tiarnan.mccaughan@enterprise-ireland.com

Grace Odlum – Market Executive, Southeast Asia

grace.odlum@enterprise-ireland.com

With digital banking being on the rise, Botswana Savings Bank (BSB) has chosen CR2, the global leading digital banking provider, to launch a suite of next-gen digital banking channels and payments services. The move forms the central pillar to the BSB digital transformation strategy to provide a suite of value-added digital services to their customers.

Headquartered in Ireland, CR2 is world-leading provider with a market leadership position in Africa, within the Digital Banking Platform market enabling over 100 banks in 60 countries to seamlessly connect and engage with their customers on the most critical banking channels today.

The sheer importance of providing dynamic digital banking payments and services has been highlighted by the Covid-19 pandemic as customers move away from branches and physical interaction.

With CR2’s next generation BankWorld platform, BSB will have the ability to digitally onboard customers remotely, allowing the bank to efficiently increase its customer reach. The new suite of digital services will give BSB’s customers full access to relevant lifestyle-based digital services such as Person to Person payments and utility payments. Customers will enjoy an enhanced digital experience as they will be able to access their accounts, products, loans and mortgages remotely whilst being able to track their spending and budgets through Personal Financial Management, creating a better all-round customer experience.

Kabelo Ngwako, BSB Director of Support Services looks forward to working with CR2 on this significant milestone for the bank. “This investment for BSB is important and we were careful to select an experienced and trusted vendor with knowledge of our market.  As CR2 are highly rated and recognised by analysts as a world leading provider of digital banking platforms we know that by bringing them onboard to roll out our digital channels they will give us a platform that will put us at the cutting edge of modern banking in Botswana” said Kabelo Ngwako.

On the announcement of the partnership, Meabh Maguire, CR2’s Global Commercial Manager said that she believes BSB’s move into Digital Banking will give them the edge in an already highly competitive market. “Our BankWorld platform will enable BSB to offer their customers a state-of-the-art digital banking and payments service. In the times that we now find ourselves living, it is key that a bank reacts and adapts quickly for its customers and with this investment, BSB are making a strong statement as to their commitment to the future and to ensuring their customers have access to the best digital banking services available.”

In welcoming the move by BSB, Nicola Kelly, Senior Market Advisor for Enterprise Ireland said, “In CR2, Botswana Savings Bank has chosen their world leading technology to fulfil their ambitious digital transformation strategy that will deliver huge benefits to BSB customers, providing access to the next generation of cutting-edge digital banking services that are being used around the world”.

“When it comes to advances in financial technology, Africa and the rest of the world is looking at Ireland. With the strong reputation for world leading innovation, Irish companies are at the forefront of the financial digital transformation – it’s the Irish Advantage in action”.