France-based startup Tinubu Square is launching an innovation lab to explore technologies for the trade credit finance and insurance industries.
Reports in Global Trade Review on Thursday (May 10) said Tinubu Square announced the lab to collaborate with existing clients on emerging technologies. Initially, the lab will focus on APIs, blockchain and deep analytics, with additional technologies on which collaborators will focus moving forward. Reports said one of its first partners will be Export Development Canada (EDC), a Canadian export credit agency.
Sébastien Méric, leader of the innovation lab, explained, “The idea is to carry out proofs of concepts at the beginning, to investigate the technologies and make sure we understand them. We can then work with customers to move beyond the proof of concept, making prototypes that they can use with their own customers, and assess what should be brought to the global market.”
Méric said the lab will enable the company to take a more collaborative approach to industry innovation and exploration of integrating new technologies into its current offering. He added that the firm will assess projects every nine weeks to determine whether further progress can be made, or whether they will abandon a project and begin a new one.
Regarding the potential for API technology to disrupt the trade finance and credit insurance space, Méric said, “One of the main changes that is coming is the fact that people now want integrated services. Businesses don’t want to go to one place for one service and another for a different service. One way is through open APIs.”
Last October, Tinubu Square announced $62 million in new funding from Long Arc Capital and Bpifrance. At the time, the company said it would use the funds to focus on development of its underlying technology, which provides credit and surety insurers, trade finance banks and export credit agencies with solutions to mitigate risk.