The rise and rise of the millennial generation has impacted some of the oldest and most traditional industries in the world. As a result, financial startups are developing innovative ways to approach and manage money.
With a workforce that's more digitally savvy than ever, finance startups are taking advantage of tools that some large, well-established businesses in their field simply don't have the ability to use. This fast-paced change to the face of the industry is rocking boats and disrupting the way business is done – with huge benefits to the public.
We've identified eight finance startups at the head of this disruption:
1. Our Crowd
An Israeli startup with the tagline, “A better way to invest in startups,” this financing newbie set out to make the process of gaining funding easier and more successful for new entrepreneurs. We’ve seen success with other crowdfunding businesses, but Our Crowd is unique; its specialized team of experts and successful entrepreneurs take funding personally – handpicking through the different proposals, investing their own money in the ventures, and only then introducing them to accredited investors both locally and world-wide.
With over 10,000 thoroughly vetted investors, Our Crowd takes it even further by working personally with the ventures after they’ve received funding, giving guidance and taking high level positions within the startups to ensure their success.
With international business becoming an everyday occurrence for even the smallest of companies, it's become more important than ever to accept payment from anywhere around the world. That’s why Adyen, a Netherlands financial startup, set to streamline the process by introducing innovative methods, which offered benefits that even high-profile payment industry dealers are adopting.
With a mobile-friendly platform, online payments are available in over 187 currencies and 250 payment methods, making it perfect for startups in diverse environments who are still deciding what works for them.
Investment management is an expensive venture, but Wealthfront is creating new expectations for the public by introducing a completely different process for how you invest. For smaller businesses, getting the kind of guidance and insights that high profile organizations receive is traditionally impossible without a massive bank account to back it.
However, in keeping with the digital age, Wealthfront’s management is entirely automated with the latest technology and experience backing it. This means a significant cut in costs and makes it possible for new investors to get high priced management and tax-harvesting without the high price.
Trading on the stock market with no experience or guidance can be risky and even more risky in the present U.S. economy. Robinhood gives you access to the biggest companies and their vast wealth without any need for capital or experience.
Located in the United States, this startup is about helping the little guy, boasting in their tagline: “Commission-free, mobile-first stock brokerage”. Zero commission fees are enough to sway millennial generation investors away from the traditional kind of stock brokerage, but they’re taking it a step further by making the stock market entirely digitized. Brokering is done online and can be accessed through your mobile phone at any time, reducing the costs that make stock trading expensive – simplifying something otherwise complicated.
Located in Germany, Kreditech is sending the message that all banks need to go digital – and to take it to the extreme, Kreditech is embracing all that digital technology has to offer. By taking advantage of Big Data, advanced data analytics practices, machine-learning algorithms, and automated workflows Kreditech is turning into a fine tuned machine able to operate faster and more efficiently, with less room for human error.
When it comes to finance, human error can be extremely damaging; Kreditech offers greater peace of mind and security, and is forcing the public to ask the same of their banks.
Atom Banking is setting the example that to be a bank, you don't need branches. With no branches, Atom is not only changing how banking is managed, but how it’s accessed as a whole. Exclusively online, users can access their bank through their mobile phones, and Atom uses the latest digital technology to provide a better and more accurate experience for their customers.
With the freedom of no brick-and-mortar locations, along with a smaller team of staff, they’re able to adopt new trends and technology faster than traditional banks. The CEO, Mark Mullen, in fact, says, “I think we have the potential to be as disruptive [as Uber]. Absolutely. Why not?"