Busy fall for Allevo. We showcased FinTP, the FINkers United open source community and the BOOST project, which includes both, in the most notorious events of our business focus and region: Internet and Mobile World 2014, Sibos Boston, SWIFT Business Forum Romania, LOAD, RICAP, The Future of Electronic Payments and others. Well, you all know that since the launch of the FinTP Project, earlier this year, we at Allevo have been quite active in promoting it. FinTP has been featured online on Allevo’s blog, on FinTP’s blog, on sibos.com, in print magazines and in focused industry events.
So here’s a recap of what we’ve done this fall:
Internet & Mobile World 2014 8-9 October Horia Beschea, Allevo CTO and President of the FINkers United association, was invited to keynote the Business Software, Cloud & Infrastructure stage at Internet & Mobile World conference in Bucharest, October 2014. He presented BOOST project, which includes both the FinTP application and the FINkers United open source community. 50% of the companies on site were offering cloud services, which fit the topics debated in conference sessions, such as cloud computing, internet of things, big data, user experience, visualization etc. Jacob Benbunan, CEO, Saffron Brand Consultants said something we fully relate to: “Forget about closed systems”. Dr. Vasile Voicu, Product Management Business Segment, Telekom Romania, presented trends for 2016: over 10mld mobile devices connected to the internet, out of which 8mld are mobile phones.
RICAP 15 October RICAP helps Romanian technology entrepreneurs and innovators to develop their businesses and take their products to international markets. The program builds on Larta Institute’s long established “network-centric” methodology successfully implemented over 20 years in 17 countries. Over 9,700 innovators have been assisted through Larta’s commercialization practice. Allevo has been part of the RICAP program and was invited as a member of their alumni to present the process of delivering FinTP. What was considered disruptive innovation in Allevo’s case was the idea of compromising the core business and the main streams of revenue by migrating to a completely different business model. This was the open source model. The time we took to define and refine how this was going to work for us was happening while we were part of their programme and the participants of this round were shown a success story of how a company can break the ice and become different. More about the community of RICAP companies, mentors and advisors, and what they were up to during the first stage of the program is available on their blog.
The future of electronic payments 16 October Andrei Dutescu, Business Analyst at Allevo, was invited to participate in the Regulations panel at The future of electronic payments event organized by Oxygen events. He talked about Allevo’s initiative called BOOST (Banking On Open Source Technologies) and about the 3 components of BOOST: 1) FinTP Project, an open source financial processing application 2) FINkers United, the open source community behind the FinTP Project and 3) the new business model of Allevo. The concept of open source software and how banks have started recently to support the adoption of these products in favor of proprietary software was also discussed. At the end of the presentation questions were asked from the audience mostly related to the FINkers United open source community and about its members, which seemed to attract everyone’s attention.
LOAD (Linux Open Alternative Days) 23 October TechHub hosted on October 23rd the Linux Open Alternative Days (LOAD), an annual event dedicated to Linux and open source technologies, which has reached its 9th edition this year. As LOAD is meant to create a strong community among supporters of the open source philosophy, there was no better place to present our FINkers United open source community and the project it is built around, FinTP. Therefore, we delegated Denisa Agatie, co-founder of FINkers United and member in its board, to talk to the audience about the FinTP Project and the challenges of creating and maintaining an open source community in the FinTech space.
SWIFT Business Forum Romania 30 October Already at its fifth edition, the SWIFT Business Forum Romania has become an annual event organized by the Romanian Banking Association that brings together key decision makers, people with business focus or from the operations area of the local banking community, key people from SWIFT and from the local solution provider community. As usual, there were a few words of introduction from Mr Radu Gratian Ghetea, President of the Romanian Banking Association, a brief of the SWIFT 2020 strategy and on SWIFT’s pricing policy, SWIFT solution presentations, a panel on regulations and standards, a compliance outline and an innovation panel. Allevo has presented its BOOST project during the chatroom sessions. Allevo CEO, Corina Mihalache, joined the innovation panel, next to Rodica Tuchila, Ruud van der Horst and Felix Enescu to discuss openly about opportunities and challenges brought by the Internet of things and the digital bank, a debate on the future of banking and financial services.
The key points of discussion loomed around facts that can be seen in financial services. We’ve seen a lot of new technologies lately in the FinTech space. Is it correct to assume entry is fairly easy, but that these new entrants, startups and customer oriented services do need banks for basic operations such as settlement etc? However, if the likes of paypals, zebras and so on out there take too much of the business that banks would have normally been doing, don’t banks need to redesign their service offering to accommodate the growing customer demand?
Banking is definitely powered by software and today’s requirements for lowering TCO and complying to standards and regulations are adding restriction after restriction. Does it make sense to buy and maintain this many types of software licenses and keep everything developed and implemented on a one-time basis or would it make sense for all banks to unify their behind the scenes operations flows and look into open software that can accommodate this? How are big players in the market dealing with the need to innovate and still remain relevant in FinTech?