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Seedhack FinTech – 60 hours and 16 teams later

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What does a bank designed for the needs of a six year-old have in common with an iPhone app designed to help you donate money to a religious organization and a system to help spot issues with legal documents? Well, they were all spawned out of Seedcamp’s recent Seedhack FinTech which took place 30th, 31st March and 1st April. We had over one hundred energetic and entrepreneurial hackers register to take part in the event in the purpose-built Campus by Google and enabled by our generous sponsors: Paypal, Domain.me, and 10gen.

Friday night’s kick off was led by a keynote speech from Michael Rolph, Director at Anthemis Group, a leading Financial Technology investment firm. He highlighted how a key part of the financial tech investment opportunities involves bringing additional transparency between those that manage capital and those that invest or use capital. The old model of a few people exploiting inefficiencies in information are over as new startups increasingly democratize the information necessary to make better financial decisions.

After the keynote, we had our API speakers present what their companies did, as well as how their technology could be used within the context of a new project. Our API presenters were:

Following the talks from our speakers, the attendees had the chance to mingle, eat some great food courtesy of @centralworking and bounce ideas off of each other. Once done, the group headed back upstairs to go into a pitch rally of ideas. After the pitch rally, everyone settled in for a late night of hacking away on their respective ideas.

By late afternoon Saturday, 16 companies had been formed and were mentored by our Judges which included:

What’s amazing is that in spite of having little sleep, the companies had tons of energy and were still struggling with how to make certain ideas work and getting their MVPs ready until late into the evening.

On Sunday, crunch time started at 4pm as all the weary-eyed hackers commenced their final pitches. Below is a summary of the top three companies formed (that presented), what the project was about, and who the members were. The best Demo award went to Holy Light, with the runner up position being split evenly between Sayvd and Minipots, both showing how awesome a product can be built in just slightly over 48 hours. The company that was given a fast track to an upcoming Seedcamp event was Business Semantics, which worked on a project to help alleviate the burden of legal document review.

Business Semantics

Using semantically-rich terminological dictionaries/ontologies and linguistic analysis to identify and remove ambiguities in contracts which by their nature constitute litigation risk.

  • Donald Chapin – Business Semantics
  • Finbar Mostyn-Williams – Indenture Analysis
  • Roy Singh – Text/ data mining
  • Samuel Belu-John – Structured Finance
  • Tim Ruffles– Text/ data mining

HolyLight A CRM solution for churches to manage churchgoers + mobile & social app to allow anyone to donate anywhere via PayPal.

MiniPots Are creating a casual social game to help friends bet each other about the topics they care about.

  • Haiyan – product innovation, design, backend dev
  • Roy – iOS developer and designer
  • James – Business innovation, service design

Sayvd Sayvd is a social mobile app giving you an easy way to save small amounts of money and stick your savings in a safe place for bigger purchases later. Save 2,5 on a coffee towards your snowboard.

What’s clear after the Seedhack FinTech event however, is how much innovation still needs to happen in the space. Many of the conversations that the attendees had with each other as well as during customer validation calls circled around a huge dissatisfaction with current payment systems, credit card processing systems, security, and even banking. We truly hope to see much more innovation coming out of this space!

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