The Fintech Guest Blog

17
Nov

10 FinTech Startups We Like

While we’ve been busy building an online banking service for small businesses from the ground up, we’ve also kept an eye on newcomers and unicorns in the fintech space. Today, we’ve picked our ten favourite startups that are changing the way the world uses financial services.

TransferWise

Headquarters: London

What it does? Online money transfer service

Why it’s cool?

This unicorn, founded just around the corner in our neighbouring Estonia, is doing nothing short of disrupting. TransferWise eliminates high bank fees from foreign exchanges by matching users who want to convert, say, pounds into euros and users who want to transfer money in the opposite direction (euros into pounds). The service currently operates nearly 300 currency routes and plans on adding 300 more routes in the next year.

Monese

Headquarters: London

What it does? A free UK current account you can open in under 3 minutes, regardless of your citizenship.

Why it’s cool?

Launched just a month ago, Monese is primarily targeting expats and immigrants in the UK, the growing segment of consumers severely underserved by traditional banks due to strict residency restrictions. Its Android (for now) mobile app lets anybody open a current account online in less than 3 minutes and get a Visa debit card. What makes it even better is the fact that the company offers low-cost international money transfers.

GoCardless

Headquarters: London

What it does? Recurring payments made simple.

Why it’s cool?

GoCardless makes it easy for businesses of any sizes to accept recurring payments online. They do so by unifying the world’s direct debit networks, simplifying them, and opening up access to everyone. Why we love them? Because in a world where most of payment processing is done over credit card-based networks, this company has created an entirely new type of payment network that significantly simplifies life for all businesses that center around recurring payments.

Invesdor

Headquarters: Helsinki

What it does? Equity-based crowdfunding platform

Why it’s cool?

This pioneering equity-based crowdfunding platform from Helsinki matches entrepreneurs looking to raise equity financing and investors who are seeking to discover and invest in exciting growth companies. It is the first fully licenced equity and debt crowdfunding platform operating across the European economic area. For businesses, Invesdor is an easy-to-use online tool through which a business can promote itself and connect with a large audience of potential investors, significantly saving time on fundraising. Companies have the freedom to decide how they raise money, who can see their investment requirements and who can invest. Among investors who use Invesdor are business angels, stock market investors and anyone who is looking to invest in promising business ideas.

Kreditech

Headquarters: Hamburg

What it does? Online lender

Why it’s cool?

Kreditech offers a range of credit and banking products for consumers who have little or no credit history to borrow money through other means. The company focuses on markets where consumers are underserved by traditional credit providers, such as Poland, Russia, the Czech Republic, Spain, and Mexico. Kreditech’s technology enables better ways of offering credit to customers who have no access to fair and affordable loans. The company’s algorithms take into consideration some 20K different data points to assess an application. Kreditech has just raised €82.5M to continue adding more products and countries to its platform.

iZettle

Headquarters: Stockholm

What it does? Mobile payments company for small businesses

Why it’s cool?

We like our Nordic neighbour iZettle because it truly understands what problems small merchants have and knows how to support them on their journey from a small idea to something bigger. The company offers small merchants one of  the cheapest and easiest ways to process card payments via its mobile card readers. In addition, the company is gradually rolling out a new product iZettle Advance to offer loans to its customers who need funds to grow their small businesses.

Mondo

Headquarters: London

What it does? Mobile-first challenger bank

Why it’s cool?

Due to launch a preview in October, Mondo is building a full-stack “smart bank” from the ground up and is in the process of applying for a full banking license. We’re looking forward to seeing what Mondo’s got in stock for us.

CONDA

Headquarters: Vienna

What it does? Crowdinvesting platform

Why it’s cool?

CONDA’s belief that the future lies in the hands of young and innovative entrepreneurs is close to our heart. Austria’s biggest crowdinvesting platform lowers the barrier for startups and small businesses to get funding. CONDA creates a community-driven mechanism for investing in business ideas, which allows anyone to invest in projects starting with as little as 100€. In addition to financing opportunities, businesses can profit from a strong marketing component of their crowdinvesting campaigns. Currently available for businesses based in Germany, Austria and Switzerland, the platform is looking to expand in other European countries soon.

FinLeap

Headquarters: Berlin

What it does? International fintech company builder

Why it’s cool?

We all agree the world needs better financial services. Finleap is a startup factory that wants to empower more fintech companies to reshape the financial industry of tomorrow. Finleap helps founders execute ideas by giving them access to venture capital, top talent, financial industry expertise and hands-on support in engineering and marketing. The team behind FinLeap has successfully built many companies and they understand the challenges fintech startups face to help effectively overcome them.

Robinhood

Headquarters: Palo Alto, California

What it does? Commission-free, mobile-first stock trading.

Why it’s cool?

Living up to its name, Robinhood helps its users save a lot of money on stock trading commissions. It is really that simple — it’s a mobile app that allows you to buy and sell stocks without having to pay any trading commissions. Through its technology-enabled brokerage the company removes the parts that make other brokerages costly. Although, stock-trading apps are nothing new, Robinhood is very attractive (judging by the amount of users the company reports) for those who want something that combines online stock without the fees with a simple and elegant design. Further down the road, the company plans to monetize its service by offering premium services, like margin lending.

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