The Best of Finovate Spring 2014

After a short flight to Silicon Valley, we donned our bright orange vests and joined the greatest minds in financial technology. We saw everything from eye-scanning identity verification to instant approval for car loans to making payments with Google glass. All of these companies were creating phenomenal disruptions, but from our experience, launching a successful innovation is so much more than a great idea – it takes drive, focus, creativity and commitment. After 67 seven-minute presentations over the span of two days, here are the top presenters that had all of these characteristics.

  • EyeVerify - EyeVerify blew the crowd away with their James Bond-like technology that uses an eyeprint scan to verify someone’s identity. This patented solution uses existing smartphone cameras to capture and pattern match the blood vessels in the whites of the eye. In the blink of an eye, this technology has captured our attention.
  • Digital Insight - Digital Insight helps banks and credit unions grow by offering innovative online and mobile banking solutions that make it easier for consumers and businesses to manage their money. Applying customer insights and innovation to design its products, they provide solutions that help financial institutions achieve higher customer engagement and profitability. Digital Insight takes customer personalization to a whole new level that bankers haven’t seen before.
  • Venovate - Venovate provides the perfect integration of both sides of an investment – matching accredited investors to qualified institutions with private-placement business opportunities. This crowdfunding marketplace facilitates the discovery, evaluation, and purchase of private company stock and other alternative assets. Venovate opens the door to smarter investment alternatives, and a wide range of financial opportunities.
  • ZenPayroll - ZenPayroll offers a sleek new take on payroll service by enabling businesses to get, set up and run payroll in minutes, from any device. ZenPayroll is taking the excel spreadsheets to a whole new level by providing direct deposit, pre-tax benefits, vacation/sick days, reimbursements, automatic tax filing and worker’s compensation all in one place. We’re excited to see the future for ZenPayroll as they launch a new HR service.
  • Dealstruck - Dealstruck is defining the future of small business lending by allowing customers to find the right loan, get the funding they need at the best rate, and show the factors that affect a loan offer. Dealstruck is the first to combine thorough credit screening on business borrowers and to allow investors the freedom to choose specific investments so they can build a customized portfolio that meets their own preferences on risk, return, industry and size.
  • Verde International  - Verde International is a 24/7, online bank strategy and planning platform that quickly identifies actionable, peer-proven formulas for success. The application provides a new method for scoring, reviewing and decision making on loan originations. Verde considers hundreds of business and market attributes, hundreds of thousands of competitive market zones, and hundreds of millions of competitive and political market overlaps to build unique peer groups around each bank. All of these features bridge the gap between internal analysis and consulting engagements, so you can quickly identify the best path for you.
  • LendingTree - LendingTree is an online marketplace of lenders where consumers can complete a simple online loan request and receive offers from multiple lenders. The marketplace contains hundreds of lenders that offer all types of home loans - mortgage, refinance, and home equity, car loans, personal loans, credit cards, credit repair services, free credit reports, credit monitoring services, auto insurance, extended auto warranty products, and much more.  LendingTree caught our attention not just because of their quirky Muppet character, but because of the ability to shop for a loan from a mobile device in 90 seconds, compare offers in real-time, and click once for the best deal.