A flying rocket leaving the fintech year 2017 behind, thus symbolizing an end-of-year-review

Looking back: An End-of-Year Review for Fintech 2017

You know you had it coming.

Your calendar told you well beforehand: This year is going to end soon. Which means the symptomatical end-of-year reviews are springing up all over the place.

We’ll contribute. While waving farewell to the old year, we’re looking back on our last 12 months of business. What did we experience? What did we achieve? And, looking at the whole picture, how has the fintech industry been holding up in 2017?

It will be a fintech end-of-year review featuring balancr then. Here are our highlights of 2017:

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A number of signs displaying the words InsurTech, RegTech, WealthTech, PensionTech, and PropTech

Beyond FinTech — 5 *Techs That Shake Up Their Industries

FinTech does not always equal FinTech. The number of digital tools and technological advancements rejigging the financial sector would go beyond the scope of this article. If there is one thing that is true about most FinTech solutions, it’s their focus on “personal finance”. FinTech software often allows users to manage their finances on their own. He doesn’t need an intermediary anymore, such as a human advisor or a bank — although a robot advisor could still be thrown in.

Yet, when looking at the vast variety of technologies and software applications, one thing becomes clear: FinTech has quite a few peers running the show. They are *Techs in their very own right.

Let’s take a look at what we have:

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An image of an ewallet in between symbols for three use cases for stored value transactions: A smartphone with a chat app, a forklift rental and a public library

Use Case: Using balancr for Stored Value Transaction Systems

Modern life can in many ways be broken down into a series of transactions. We give something, like information, money or services, and we get a corresponding value in return. In that regard, time really is money. And so are stored values like virtual assets, loyalty points, kilometers driven and hours of usage.

Before online access was vastly available, tracking such values was synonymous to dragging paperwork. Software experts gave us Excel, of course. But despite its name it has done very little to elevate us above the need for paper copies.

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An electric brain in a jar, symbolizing artificial intelligence and robo-advisory, from which currencies and financial assets branch off

Robo-Advisory, Fintech and AI

Looking around the world, we can see a growing interest in the application of artificial intelligence, especially in financial services. Major fintech events like the Money20/20 US and the Hong Kong Fintech Week gave it the pole position, inviting machine learning experts and futurists to debate it before giant audiences. That said, the practical application of AI in fintech is not a dream of the future, but a present reality.

Robo-advisors, using artificial intelligence to analyze data and manage a user’s portfolio accordingly, have been around for a while in the financial industry. They promise easy accessibility and less need for human interaction, thus providing services at reduced costs. One step further and we enter the domain of trading bots. Such bots make actual business decisions based on previously accessed market data and gainings while circumventing human errors.

But how far have we come already? Let’s take a look.

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