In UK, FinTech Alliance Launches

Collaborative efforts between FinTech firms and traditional financial firms continue to gather steam. In the U.K., the FinTech Alliance debuted with more than 500 members. Elsewhere, Monzo crosses the Pond, and APIs make inroads into real estate.

Movement to foster collaboration between FinTech firms and traditional financial firms continues to gather steam across the globe, aided by government encouragement and initiatives.

In one recent example, the U.K. FinTech Alliance debuted this week, with a roster that tops 500 members. Crowdfund Insider reported that the alliance was created in partnership with the Department for International Trade, and looks to strengthen what is being termed as the FinTech “ecosystem” in the country, where about 76,000 individuals are employed. A release from the alliance noted that among the current members are Level39 and Virgin StartUp.

The alliance said individuals or companies can build profiles on the FinTech Alliance, where users will be able to access and share information across the platform, connect with investors, receive updates on the latest policy and regulatory changes, and find employees.

Monzo Across The Pond

In an example of U.K. efforts making tracks on a more global scale, Monzo, the U.K. digital bank, has set up shop in the U.S. As reported, the company is rolling out apps linked to checking accounts and debit cards. The firm said it will be holding sign-up events for consumers in cities that include Los Angeles, New York and San Francisco.

Among the account features are no minimum balances and no monthly fees, nor will Monzo pay interest on deposits. Monzo, which has 2 million customers and the equivalent of about $793 million USD on deposit, has also applied for a U.S. banking license in partnership with Sutton Bank.

As Monzo CEO Tom Blomfield said in an interview with The Verge, “Initially, it will be a partnership with Sutton Bank, as we’re not a regulated bank in the U.S. yet. But, in parallel, we will be applying for a U.S. banking charter. … The main thing that will be removed is lending. We’re not a bank [in the U.S.], so we won’t be lending customers money.”

Other features will make the leap from the U.K. to the U.S., such as payments notification and tap-to-pay functionality.

Property Management (And Payments), APIs Included

In an example of API-driven B2B developments, InventoryBase, a platform that offers property inspection services to management companies, said this past week that it is adding B2B payment services. The payments will be geared toward the third parties that conduct property visits, according to reports.

Third-party suppliers can integrate into the InventoryBase platform via API, which allows stakeholders to connect back-end systems, the company noted.

Through the firm’s rollout of its InventoryBase Workstreams module, property managers can submit a job to the platform to receive bids from potential vendors. The company further illustrated that once a supplier is chosen, the job is conducted and the vendor provides their report.

“Payments have always been a burden to the property services supplier industry, and InventoryBase aims to simplify how clients pay suppliers in a more speedy, secure and protected way,” InventoryBase said in its release. The company added that the B2B payments feature, as described above, ensures that both property manager and supplier agree over a contract and payment.