Startups set for success after completing The FinLab’s 100-day accelerator programme

Startups set for success after completing
The FinLab’s 100-day accelerator programme


Singapore, 31 August 2017 The FinLab is set to see more success following the graduation of eight promising financial technology (FinTech) startups from its 100-day accelerator programme this month.

The FinLab, an innovation accelerator joint venture between United Overseas Bank (UOB) and SGInnovate1, provides practical guidance, resources and mentorship to enable startups selected into its programme to secure investor funding, to sign commercial deals and to expand into new markets.


The graduates from The FinLab’s second cycle have developed a range of innovative FinTech solutions using technologies such as blockchain, artificial intelligence and machine learning. These solutions will be used to drive innovation in regulatory technology, capital markets, business efficiency, financial inclusion, personal finance and mobile payments.

Ms Janet Young, Head of Group Channels and Digitalisation, UOB, said, “UOB’s entrepreneurial background provides us with a first-hand understanding of the factors that enable businesses to succeed. We have used this insight to set up an ecosystem of partners from government, industry and the investment community2, both locally and in the region, within The FinLab to help more startups build FinTech solutions of the future. This support includes providing valuable mentorship and resources to help startups grow their businesses in a viable and sustainable manner.”

Tapping The FinLab’s network to propel regional expansion

Mr Felix Tan, Managing Director of The FinLab, said the trailblazers from the first cycle of The FinLab’s programme have inspired more startups to seek a partner who is able to help them navigate the complexities of expanding into new markets.

“We observed that there was an increase in the number of startups that are more advanced in their business development applying to be part of the second cycle of our accelerator programme. Although some of these startups had already gained early business traction, they saw our insights, venture capital networks and our regional industry partnerships as a way of speeding up their market entry into and across Asia,” Mr Tan said.

For example, cycle one graduate Turnkey Lender3 expanded into Indonesia while participating in the programme. It then attracted US$2 million in funding from Vertex Ventures, the venture capital arm of Temasek Holdings, to further its entry into other ASEAN markets such as Malaysia, Philippines and Thailand. Vertex’s investment is a reflection of its confidence in the startup.


Mr Tan also said that The FinLab was attracting startups not only from Asia, but from around the world. For instance, Israel-based startup PayKey used the insights, partnership access and financial support gained from The FinLab accelerator programme to establish its footprint in Asia.

Through the support of The FinLab, PayKey was able to collaborate with UOB to create UOB MyKey4, a solution that enables consumers to pay and to be paid securely through social messaging apps. This is PayKey’s first business deal is Southeast Asia and is an important milestone for the company as it builds its presence in the region.

Other startups taking advantage of The FinLab’s expertise in helping businesses expand in Asia include:

·         UK-based Transficc, a startup that has built a low latency, robust and scalable consolidated application programming interface which enables financial institutions to connect easily to multiple electronic trading platforms at a fraction of the time and cost; and

·         Canadian-based Quber, which helps financial institutions use big data to gain a deeper understanding of their customers’ lifestyle needs. With the insight, financial institutions can then build engaging programmes based on their customers’ needs to help them acquire better money management habits over time.


Mr Pang Heng Soon, Head of Investments, SGInnovate, said, “We are excited that many of The FinLab startups have progressed in the FinTech space. Through access to resources, advice and connections to different parts of The FinLab’s ecosystem, these startups are breaking into different markets in Singapore and regionally, providing viable solutions to real business challenges. We have high hopes for these teams and believe that their products will continue to scale globally.”

Strengthening industry alliances

As part of strengthening its industry alliances, The FinLab recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Shenzhen Internet Finance Association, China and the Internet Professionals Association, Hong Kong. The MOU aims to encourage knowledge exchange across borders and to help The FinLab’s startups expand into China and Hong Kong.

“Apart from speeding up the startups’ development, we are also working to build a strong partner ecosystem to help them seize overseas expansion opportunities as they grow their business. With this MOU, The FinLab’s startups will be able to establish a footing in China and Hong Kong, which are two key markets in Asia. We will continue to build up such partnerships to strengthen our current network in Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam,” Mr Tan said.

Applications for the next 100-day accelerator programme will open in November 2017. For more information on The FinLab, please visit www.thefinlab.com.

1 SGInnovate is a private-limited company wholly owned by the Singapore Government. For more information, please visit www.sginnovate.com.

2 Partners include SPRING Singapore, SGX and venture capitalists such as Kuan Hsu of KK Fund, Carmen Yuen of Vertex Ventures and Debneel Mukherjee of Decacorn Capital
3 Turnkey Lender was also the recipient of the second prize at the inaugural MAS FinTech Awards in the Singapore SME category.
4 UOB MyKey, launched on 10 July 2017, is an extension of the UOB’s mobile banking app, UOB Mighty.

– Ends –

About The FinLab

The FinLab is a joint venture between UOB and SGInnovate. We accelerate the development of FinTech startups changing our world today. Through our deep expertise and broad experience in the financial industry and the venture capital ecosystem, we provide startups with valuable insights and a strong infrastructure to propel their businesses to the next level. Our wide connections in ASEAN, Greater China, Europe and the United States provide our startups an unparalled access to most of the world’s markets for growth and expansion. For more information, please visit www.thefinlab.com.

About United Overseas Bank

United Overseas Bank Limited (UOB) is a leading bank in Asia with a global network of more than 500 offices in 19 countries and territories in Asia Pacific, Europe and North America. Since its incorporation in 1935, UOB has grown organically and through a series of strategic acquisitions. UOB is rated among the world’s top banks: Aa1 by Moody’s and AA- by Standard & Poor’s and Fitch Ratings respectively.

In Asia, UOB operates through its head office in Singapore and banking subsidiaries in China, Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand, as well as branches and representative offices across the region.


UOB plays an active role in the community, focusing on art, children and education. It has, over more than three decades, held the longest-running art competition in Singapore, the UOB Painting of the Year, which has since been extended across Southeast Asia. In recognition of its contributions to the arts, UOB was conferred the Singapore National Arts Council’s Distinguished Patron of the Arts Award for the 13th consecutive year in 2017. UOB also encourages its employees across the region to be involved in its regular volunteer activities. This includes the annual UOB Heartbeat Run/Walk which is held in China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand.



Quote and fact sheet – Startups set for success after completing The FinLab’s 100-day accelerator programme



Aimazing (Singapore)

Aimazing enables consumers and businesses to make mobile contactless payments using inaudible soundwaves facilitated by speakers and microphones on smartphones. This creates a seamless “tap and pay” experience for the user, regardless of which payment platform either party is using. Aimazing was one of the winners at the MAS Fintech Awards 2016.

Mr Jun Ting, Founder, Aimazing, said, “The immense guidance and support of The FinLab team and mentor community has been invaluable to our young team.”



Attores (Singapore)

Attores uses blockchain technology to help companies store and share data and documents securely. Attores is now working with Ngee Ann Polytechnic on a pilot programme to issue and verify the authenticity of diplomas via IT solutions. With Attores, potential employers can also verify Ngee Ann Polytechnic students’ certificates more efficiently.

Mr David Moskowitz, CEO, Attores, said, “The FinLab was instrumental in helping us connect with Ngee Ann Polytechnic through the Poly Fintech 100 initiative. We are very thankful for the continued support that both UOB and The FinLab have given us, and we look forward to deepening this relationship further.”



BondLinc (Singapore)

BondLinc makes bond trading more transparent and efficient for institutions, relationship managers, traders and clients. It does this by digitising the bond trading process on a single platform which can be accessed by clients, relationship managers and traders. By leveraging the client ecosystem to link everyone on a unified platform, BondLinc effects cost savings, increases efficiency and provides compliance and audit capabilities at bank levels.

Mr E K Ong, Co-founder, Bondlinc, said, “The FinLab offers unparalleled mentorship from both within and outside of UOB. The FinLab’s investment has given Bondlinc extra credibility which helps us when we deal with prospective clients and partners.”



CardUp (Singapore)

CardUp enables cardholders to make large payments using MasterCard or Visa credit cards. Cardholders can enjoy the convenience of going cashless and accessing lines of credit, and benefit from earning more rewards points and miles, as well as additional CardUp rewards, without the hassle of making payments through cheques or bankers drafts.



Chynge (Singapore)

Chynge uses artificial intelligence to help companies ensure that their cross-border payments are compliant, safe, transparent and fast for all parties involved in each transaction.

Mr Joe Tusin, Co-founder, Chynge, said, “The FinLab’s intensive 100-day accelerator programme gave us a glimpse into business models of FinTechs and market opportunities. We appreciate the tremendous support we have received from Felix and his tenacious team at The FinLab.”



HelloGold (Malaysia)

HelloGold simplifies the buying and selling of gold for retail investors and small businesses through an app, letting customers buy physical gold with as little as RM1. It also allows gold to be pledged as collateral to borrow at lower rates when needed. It solves the problem for those who want to save in gold but can’t afford it, and for those who want to borrow money but don’t have the right credit score.

Mr Robin Lee, CEO, HelloGold, said, “It was a simple decision for us to apply to The FinLab programme as we wanted an accelerator that could introduce us to strategic partners and investors, and support us in our plans for expansion for the long term.”



Nickel (Singapore)

Nickel is building NiX, a marketplace that simplifies institutional forex trading for corporates and onshore banks. Through NiX, customers can get instant access to hundreds of providers at once, while enjoying competitive FX pricing.

Mr Liam Lin, Founder, Nickel, said, “After the programme, the mentors from UOB as well as The FinLab team has been active in getting Nickel involved with their various activities within the startup community. They have also been very supportive of our NiX project and have been absolutely essential in our traction with the Indonesian regulators."

PayKey (Israel)

PayKey’s payment keyboard, which is integrated with UOB Mighty, UOB’s mobile app, can be accessed within popular social messaging apps, allowing users to make P2P payments quickly and securely.

Mr Guy Talmi, Chief Marketing Officer, PayKey, said, “The FinLab’s accelerator programme was a great success for PayKey, and resulted in our partnership with UOB later on. We are excited to bring our Social Payment Solution with the unique functionality of sending money using popular social messaging apps to UOB, our first customer in Southeast Asia, and look forward to see further customers’ engagement and usage.”



Quber (Canada)

Quber leverages technology to provide smart financial management tools. Through a mobile platform, Quber provides an innovative solution that recommends relevant financial products based on the customer’s needs.

Ms Jen Leger, Co-founder, Quber, said, “The FinLab has helped us to understand consumers’ needs, the pain points of financial institutions in Singapore and how our solution serves the Singapore market. Being a major FinTech hub, Singapore was the perfect spot to begin our entry into Asia, and being part of The FinLab was a good first step to expand our team and solution in both Singapore and Thailand.”



Tookitaki (Singapore)

Tookitaki’s machine learning platform applies supervised learning to analyse large volumes of data to identify potential risk and compliance issues. This approach improves model performance with time, decreases chances of decision leakage and keeps it relevant to any business environment.

Mr Abishek Chatterjee, Founder, Tookitaki, said, “We are excited to be part of The FinLab’s accelerator programme as it gives us an inside view of current trends among Asian financial institutions and solutions that matter to their customers. Getting connected to industry veterans as mentors was a great boost in our growth journey.”



TransFICC (United Kingdom)

TransFICC provides banks and asset managers with a low latency, robust and scalable consolidated universal API for trading. TransFICC’s one AI for eTrading connects to all trading venues, while providing an audit trail for best execution practices.

Mr Steve Toland, Founder, TransFICC, said, “In looking to establish a footprint in Asia, The FinLab has been a valuable strategic partner, connecting us with a network of financial institutions and ecosystem partners in the region.”



Tuple Technologies (Singapore)

Tuple Technologies’ (Tuple) Intelligence Assistant provides companies with the ability to analyse their data for better customer acquisition and retention. Tuple’s solution includes a chatbot which acts as a business assistant to quickly execute marketing campaigns in various social and digital media channels.



Turnkey Lender (Ukraine)

Turnkey Lender is a cloud-based loan management system which fully automates every step in the origination and account servicing process. This ensures speed and agility while controlling risk with business-driven, adjustable risk parameters using proprietary credit scoring models.

Ms Elena Ionenko, Co-founder and Chief Business Development Officer, Turnkey Lender, said, “Having a pipeline of potential partners is important for a startup like us to continue to expand. Since completing the accelerator programme, we have continued to receive invaluable support from The FinLab and UOB in connecting us with government agencies and like-minded partners in the region. This has really helped us to enter into new markets successfully.”

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