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Startups and Ideas to Change the World

David Pope, Marketing Director, HooYu 

HooYu is a global identity confirmation service used not only by businesses that need to check their customers are who they say they are, but also by consumers who want to check another person’s identity.

HooYu helps protect consumers from scams and financial loss by giving them access to the same technology that banks and online businesses have been enjoying for years to make sure their customers are who they say they are. HooYu is also used by money transfer sites, lenders, banks and sharing economy sites to confirm customer identity.

We verify a person’s digital footprint, authenticates their ID document and conducts a biometric facial check comparing a selfie of the customer with the facial image on their ID document. HooYu also extracts and verifies data from digital footprint sources such as Facebook or LinkedIn or ID document sources such as passports, driving licences or proof of address documents. HooYu then examines, compares and cross-references customer identity across these multiple sources to deliver an identity confidence score.

HooYu ensures that people are able to prove their identity in today’s online, digital, 24/7 mobile world. We help everyday internet users to know that the people they are dealing with online are who they say they are and to build trust and confidence. Everyday HooYu protects internet users from romance scams, airbnb scams, recruitment scams, investment scams by enabling them to ask the person they are interacting with to prove their identity.

The company helps businesses to reduce account opening abandonment by creating a smooth online customer journey so that account opening can easily be completed whilst still meeting Anti-Money Laundering compliance requirements. HooYu’s unique blend of identity verification technologies means that customers can be verified in real-time without having to force a customer to go into a branch or to email in copies of ID documents and then wait hours or days for account opening to be completed.

So far there have been no challenges to scaling HooYu, our clients can choose to use HooYu via our back office portal or integrate HooYu into their site or app.

Maya Kumar, Head of UK & Ireland, Luno 

Luno is a digital currency wallet and exchange that makes it safe and easy for people and businesses to buy, sell, store, use and learn about digital currencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum.

Our vision is to upgrade the world to a better financial system. The way people think and use money is changing fast. The existing financial system was built for a non-digital age, ignoring the needs of the modern individual. Decentralised digital currencies (i.e. controlled by no central authority) are enabling us to reimagine the financial system, leveraging efficient technology to upgrade the world to something better: money that is cheaper, faster and safer, private yet transparent, interoperable and programmable and with open and equal access for everyone.

People still do not know where to find a service provider they can trust, an easy but also a safe place to buy digital currencies. Luno ensures they provide this option to users by building bank grade onboarding processes and robust security systems to safely and securely buy/sell, store and use Bitcoin and Ethereum. Educating people and demystifying myths of our industry is key to growth – there is a scarcity of objective, high quality educational materials that explain things about the industry to non-technical people. Luno aims to overcome this by offering our online Learning Portal on our website and app. As we grow across Africa, Asia and Europe, localisation in terms of language, customer engagement, payment methods and other product features is key to ensuring we are offering a global product at a local level.

We deal with these global challenges by speaking to our customers directly in each country, using their feedback, working with local partners and hiring the best talent who understand the market in which we operate. Other external challenges relate to how the traditional financial system views digital currencies. Luno actively communicates and engages with the wider community so they better understand digital currencies and are open to work together to cultivate a sustainable and positive impact on society and the economy.

Nicholas Piël, CEO, Surfly 

Surfly, a Dutch company based in Amsterdam, has developed a visual engagement tool for sharing web sessions online. With Surfly co-browsing solution and video chat, support agents and advisors can remotely assist website visitors.

Unlike screen sharing, Surfly’s unique approach does not require you to download any software or plugins, nor does it require any installation – making it simple, fast and safe. With Surfly’s turnkey service, advisors can move seamlessly across different communication channels (Telephone, Whatsapp, Facebook, Phone or web chat) to a collaborative web-session as they engage with their customers. Moreover, during a co-browse session support, agents and advisors can also share and view documents that reside on their local machine by just dragging them into the browser window.

In today’s financial world, customers want that financial services firms understand their needs and wants. If a financial services firm fails to exceed the customer expectation, they tend to lose their customer. Great customer experience starts with a relationship of understanding and this requires tools that will help an agent to understand a customer and drive customer loyalty, which in turn drives retention, recommendations, and most importantly trust. Our clients achieve the highest customer satisfaction rates among all other communication channels. This is backed up by industry reports such as Forrester reports, “Co-browsing has a much higher satisfaction rating (78% satisfaction rating) than asynchronous electronic channels (email, and web self-service)”.

Surfly has reinvented the way financial services firms interact with their customers. The company has helped big insurance carriers to enhance the customer experience, as well as, improve customer satisfaction. With the help of co-browsing and video chat, agents and advisors can securely navigate a webpage alongside their customer, guide them through complex forms and processes, or use annotation to highlight and emphasize areas of interest. In fact, co-browsing with video chat can be a very effective way to strengthen the emotional bond between a company and a customer – enabling agents to connect emotionally and establish customer intimacy during high-value purchases.

Francesco Simoneschi, CEO and co-Founder, TrueLayer 

TrueLayer builds APIs that enable companies to securely and quickly access the financial data of their customers and make payments, provided that they have given their explicit consent to make it available. We’re helping to make Open Banking a reality by building the technical backbone that allows companies to quickly and efficiently build new products and services.

We provide our service for free to charities and non-profit organisations. Clockwise, a credit union, is already working with us to speed up how loans are assessed for people unable to access traditional financing. We’re keen for more charities to take up our offer and build products that really help people.

Financial inclusion is a core benefit of Open Banking and one of our fundamental beliefs. We are certain that new Open Banking-based services will soon become available that make universal banking a reality and liberalise the credit market. Our goal is to power a new era of financial innovation – so we’re working to facilitate a financial world, where every consumer, particularly the unbanked, have access to financial services and products that would enhance their lives.

Open Banking is still in its infancy and many consumers do not know how it will reduce their costs, increase their choice of services, and generally, give them a much better financial experience by improving competition. Security is naturally a critical part of Open Banking – everyone needs to be able to trust that their data is safe – especially in the current environment. This is why we undertook several months of hard work to gain a license from the Financial Conduct Authority and ISO 27001 certification on security management. Consumers need to know that TrueLayer’s systems are as secure as any major bank.


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