FinTech, or financial technology, remains one of the most exciting sectors of tech innovation. Whether it’s payment processing, online lending, investment management, or consumer lending, companies are using new technologies to change how financial services are delivered to consumers. At breakneck speed, FinTech companies are updating long-outdated processes, creating new services that would have seemed unimaginable even a decade ago, and in some cases directly challenging much larger and more established businesses for market share.
Nowhere is the spirit of FinTech innovation more alive than in Israel. Already known for its large and growing tech ecosystem (most startups per capita than any other country) Israel is capitalizing on its existing technical knowhow and culture of innovation to create some of the world’s most innovative FinTech companies. Last year, in Israel alone, it was estimated there were over 500 FinTech startups in existence. Not surprisingly, many of these companies are raising eyebrows. The 2016 Fintech 100 ranking by global advisory firm KPMG and Australia’s well-respected Fintech VC H2 Ventures listed 9 Israeli companies among its list of top global FinTech Innovators. Investors are also taking note, with an estimated 10 percent of last year’s $4.5 billion of investment in Israel tech going to FinTech firms.
Below you will find four Israeli companies making a big splash in FinTech whom you are likely to hear much more about in the future.
New solutions based on Big Data analytics are allowing businesses to reassess and improve their existing services, particularly as they relate to how they serve their customers. Earnix’s software solutions provide banks and other financial institutions with the ability to use Big Data analytics to guide their pricing decisions. Through the use of Earnix’s predictive analytics and complex data analysis software, the financial institution of the future is better able to predict and react to changes in both consumer behavior and the market. Not surprisingly, Earnix has peaked the interest of investors, recently raising a $13.5 million venture round.
Commercial real estate development is a business heavily reliant on the accurate analysis of complex data and information. CrediFI’s big data software platform simplifies the ability of Commercial Real Estate Finance professionals to compile and analyze key information needed to make informed decisions regarding potential deals. From financial and loan data to property specific information and market related analysis CrediFI’s platform is a 21st century solution to commercial real estate deal analysis. To date, CrediFI has raised $23 million in financing, having completed a $13 million venture round in mid February.
As online purchasing and social media use continue to increase, it was only a matter of time until someone created a secure solution facilitating payments through social media. Tel Aviv based PayKey has developed software that enables banks to provide their customers with the ability to make online payments within various social networks and messaging services. A winner of the Bank Innovation Israel Demo contest, PayKey’s solution is available across mobile platforms, works with various social networks, and can be customized and branded. In November of 2016, PayKey raised a $6 million Series A funding round which included Mastercard and Santander InnoVentures.
While Bitcoin remains the world’s most popular cryptocurrency, its underpinning technology, blockchain is helping to spurr further FinTech innovation. Blockchain startup, Colu provides users with the ability to securely transfer digital currency to one another. Yet, Colu is not just another digital currency wallet. Colu’s blockchain powered technology allows for the creation of local digital currencies that can be accepted and used for transactions within a particular community, neighborhood, or favorite merchant. Colu raised $9.6 million last year in a Series A Round led by Spark Capital, among others.