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The first of three episodes recorded at Fintech Talents, that we produced in partnership with Andaria, experts in scalable embedded finance solutions.
The event took place at The Brewery, London in November where we recorded a series of interviews from Andaria’s booth with a number of the speakers and attendees. Our guests for this episode were:
1/ Nirav Patel, CEO, Andaria
2/ Victor Cruz, CEO, VC Innovations
3/ Anjali Singh, Founder, HealthWallet
4/ Carl McCartney, Customer Experience Director, Les Mills
5/ Peter Dignan, Head of Pistonheads Engineering and Consumer Engagement, CarGurus
6/ André Moeller, Global Payments Manager, Elli at Volkswagen Group
Nirav Patel, CEO, Andaria
Nirav talked about why they had decided to sponsor FinTech Talents. Andaria is using the event to push out thought leadership and help educate others, as he suggested that the industry is at the tip of the iceberg in terms of embedded finance and there is plenty of opportunity to come.
Nirav defined embedded finance as a fusion of two different spheres, integrating financial services into a non-financial company or business. He went on to mention exciting use cases involving football clubs, which puts football fans at the centre of the proposition. Nirav said this is particularly important when considering the cost-of-living crisis and how sports can be a release from people’s everyday hardships. Andaria’s solution can reinforce this.
Loyalty is a given when it comes to sports fans however the benefit. Andaria are looking to improve the customer journey and make it more diverse, efficient and cost effective through their embedded finance solution.
Nirav stated that the solution doesn’t aim to dilute the sporting team’s brand but add an enhanced product to it. Fans would be able to get a branded card that looks and feels like the football club. This can then be used not only within the club’s stadium but also outside where consumers can gain loyalty point.
He then highlighted priorities for Andaria over the next 12 months, which included looking at anything in the mobility space and also doing something that gives a helping hand to the community.
Victor Cruz, CEO, VC Innovations
Victor spoke about the immersive and intimate experience VC Innovations are trying to create at Fintech Talents. The Brewery is the perfect venue for this. They place a big value on the audience and creating content. There’s lots going on with live DJ sets, the craft beer stands and the largest hosted buyer program in the UK. It’s the fifth anniversary of the event.
Victor explained how they are trying to grow the event in a sustainable way. He think it’s great that the likes of Andaria are leveraging the platform pre-event, during the event and post event to engage with their community.
Victor jokingly referred to himself as the Chief Troublemaker Officer. He loves chatting to innovators, getting to know his clients and understanding why delegates come to the show.
Ultimately, they are looking to attract innovators from across the ecosystem. But there is a big amount of effort around understanding the buy side ecosystem and what that audience is trying to achieve and then matching that against companies that can address objectives, drivers, inhibitors. This could any number of things from cloud and data analytics to BaaS and embedded finance.
Victor talked about the future of the event. He wants to keep it intimate and for him it’s about influencing the audience makeup, the content narrative and the experience. He’s not looking to make the event another Money20/20. FinTech Talents is well placed from a demand gen, brand awareness and marketing perspective. He is very proud of their retention rate which is close to 100%. The vast majority of people at this year’s event will return next year.
Anjali Singh, Founder, HealthWallet
Anjali stated the aim of HealthWallet is to transform the healthcare funding landscape in the UK by using the power of fintech and the power of embedded finance to create and develop a new way of funding healthcare. HealthWallet is a use first pay later solution rather than a pay first use later model.
Anjali explained how a consumer would download the HealthWallet app and then they would pay a subscription. Immediately after downloading the app the virtual HealthWallet credit card can be accessed and then theyu can pay for healthcare services and get cashback rewards, as well as interest-free payment plans. HealthWallet is targeting four main demographics including 45-65 which typically do not have medical insurance but health is important to them, and the freelancer contractor market, which typically don’t have access to workplace benefits and therefore don’t have access to health insurance or a health cash plan. Anjali described HealthWallet as the poster child for embedded finance as their health care product is embedded within a lending or credit proposition.
Carl McCartney, Customer Experience Director, Les Mills
Carl began by providing some background to Les Mills. It’s a fitness company that focuses on the health and wellbeing of the planet. It was founded in 1968 by Les Mills – the Olympic and Commonwealth athlete based out of Auckland in New Zealand. His son then created a suite of group training programs, which were launched in the early 90s and now exist in over 110 countries around the world. They have 130,000 instructors and around 9 million weekly workouts through their club partners and streaming platform.
Carl highlighted the changes seen in the modern customer. It’s estimated that around 75% of the workforce will be made up of Gen Z and millennials by 2025. The pandemic has changed the way people consume goods and how they integrate goods into their lives and how quickly they want these goods available.
Carl said that the biggest change with Gen Z is the way they interact with brands – they no longer use Google and reviews they use TikTok as a search engine and see reviews through social channels of like-minded people. The negative side for brands is if they are not making full use of those channels as they are then less likely to get that customer engagement.
Carl said at Les Mills they are looking into how to use embedded finance to create a lifestyle habit that matches the behaviours and motivations of the Gen Z consumer.
Peter Dignan, Head of Pistonheads Engineering and Consumer Engagement, CarGurus
Peter began with an introduction to CarGurus. CarGurus was founded in 2006 by one of the co-founders of TripAdvisor. It is the number one automotive marketplace in the USA and they are trying to bring it to the UK. The vision statement for CarGurus is building a destination that gives consumers and dealers the confidence to buy, own and sell the cars in the right way, anywhere at the right price for them.
Pistonheads is part of the CarGurus family. Pistonheads is the number one site for UK premium performance and collectible cars, and has more Ferraris for sale than AutoTrader.
CarGurus aims to satisfy three main things when it comes to consumer experience: does the car meet their criteria, are they getting a good price and is the car reliable.
Peter said they’ve seen a transition, especially through the Covid times, of moving the car buying journey fully online. As part of buying it online, you need to have the tools there to make that work. Where embedded finance come in is that you need a way to finance a car. A majority of people are looking for a monthly price rather than an overall price, and being able to surface that up in the consumer journey is really key to making that work.
Peter talked about how they could generate revenue from embedded finance. Ultimately, they want to be part of the transaction, by taking a small percentage of the transaction fee and a small percentage of the finance deal. They want to ensure a good customer experience so they actually understand how much they’re paying, what they’re buying and what they can afford.
Peter concluded by saying that Pistonheads have launched an auction product. But the ultimate thing is they want people to buy, sell and own cars in any way which is suitable for them. They want to build the tools that mean they grow in the automotive sector in the UK.
André Moeller, Global Payments Manager, Elli at Volkswagen Group
Andre talked about what it means to be a customer centric company and it’s complicated at Elli, a company offering e-mobility solutions. The onboarding process is always the same but sometimes they don’t see the customer for six months because he’s a house owner and charges up his car at home. But then in the summertime, he is going to Spain with the whole family, and everything has to work.
Andre went on the talk about the challenges of risk and fraud prevention detection which starts for them at the KYC process. Currently, they are having a discussion with Revolut to help with reducing the amount of fraud. Andrew spoke about the challenge of having the right set-up across Europe, with customers using PayPal and credit cards. Ultimately the challenge is to ensure a balance between interaction with the customer and making the payment work.
Andre talked about how he is supportive of AI and machine learning as the next big thing in fraud prevention and spoke about getting ahead of the fraudsters. AI and machine learning will help them detect issues and protect their systems.
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