Innovation requires Infrastructure
Innovations require infrastructure. Transportation services need streets. Software innovations need devices. Uber needs a mobile internet. Intelligent Software needs Data.
As you might know we at Fincite are providing an Investment Software enabling financial institutions to provide digitally-empowered advice to their customers.
Digital Financial Advice requires data
To provide the best quality advice, a 360° view on the customers’ financial is a great benefit. And times are good for this. Based on technology, market data available and regulation (PSD2), it became possible to connect (almost) all financial assets & positions digitally.
So, we incorporated Accounts, Real Estate, Pensions and Insurances into our Investment Software.
In 2017, we went beyond Germany and started in several further European countries. Here’s what we learned.
Europe is not Europe (yet)
First thing you learn: Each country in Europe is different. While often the same regulations such as PSD2 and MiFiD II are in place, the historic evolution of the technologies is way different.
Take account aggregation. You are tempted to think: “It’s PSD2. So, it’s all the same for EU Countries, right?” A clear: “No!”. Next to different technology interfaces, many countries differ in their 2-Factor-Authentification (2FA). Different aggregation vendors such as our partners of figo are solving the challenges resulting from different techniques. From screen scraping to API to App disintermediation, the approaches vary largely.
When It comes to Pension even regulatory implementations vary largely. In the UK, the Nordics but also the Netherlands you can see your current corporate and state pension on websites – often called Pension Dashboard. Digital. This can be a great start to advise. a customer on his retirements. In Germany, there is no API, no Dashboard, in sight.
Real Estate is again a different issue. Countries are following different price evaluation standards in different countries. Transmitting a valid pricing estimation on real estate can help, to provide more holistic advice.
And, let’s not start with Insurances and standards like BiPro. This blog post would get too long. 🙂
So… How to move on?
We learned fast, that while our Technology is scalable beyond borders, different data infrastructure demands different processing. So, we decided to take this as a challenge to reduce our onboarding time for each country by professionalizing the country-specific Data Source Selection & Onboarding Process.
Last year we started in the Netherlands. This year in Belgium, Switzerland, and Austria. We are working with local customers and partners on enabling the fundament holistic financial advice in these countries. For Q4, we are currently in talks with customers at 3 further European countries.
If you are a customer or partner in the countries mentioned above or in other European countries… let’s get in touch.