One of the most exciting, must-know trends in banking right now is the re-bundling of diverse financial products and services by digital innovators. To find out more, we’ve interviewed Tono Brusola, founder of Fundsfy, which joins up day-to-day cash and longer-term investment management in one digital banking portal.
Available across Europe, Spain-based Fundsfy combines a neobank with an investment marketplace, and it enables users to control their spending and access the market-leading funds and products via a single app.
“Our greatest strength lies in the fact we offer every product a traditional neobank provides, but also give access to an excellent variety of high-quality financial products,” Tono said.
Here are Tono’s extended responses to our questions:
1. Did you have a defining experience that drove you to set up Fundsfy?
The main drive to set up Fundsfy came from my experience with seeing a large gap in the market. The problem we saw was the lack of access for people who do not have the capability or knowledge to access high quality private banking products. Focusing on this problem created a desire to innovate the market, and to level the playing field. It is not common for many people to know about the benefits of investing into the stock market, and to many it can seem risky or uncertain. A common misconception is that investing is only for those with profiles of high financial income. At Fundsfy we want to educate and give equal access for everyone to invest quick, fast, and easy. Educating users on the ability to diversify your investment portfolio by investing into funds and other low risk investments.
Another driving factor was seeing that the fintech neobank sector was handling digital banking, but lacking to provide users with digital investment opportunities. On one side, you see the digital banking industry, and on the other side you see the digital investing buzz with cryptocurrency and other similar products. Fundsfy seeks to bridge the gap between these two areas of digital banking and investing. Before Fundsfy, in order to manage your money you would probably have to access a lot of different apps, but Fundsfy gives the user the option to see everything all in one place.
2. What’s the next big evolution in neobanking?
A powerful core neobank with simplified wealth management access. Taking personalization to new levels with the use of Artificial Intelligence (AI). Simplifying mobile payments to allow for quick and secure transactions. Also, the importance of blockchain technology is another next big evolution. At Fundsfy we are implementing AI in our system to help the user get the most out of their experience. And with our strong network of partners we are already on the cutting edge of blockchain technology. We believe in data security and financial growth for everyone. That’s why at Fundsfy we strive to stay ahead, focus on user experience, and make investment our primary focus.
3. In five years’ time, where do you envisage that you will have taken Fundsfy?
We envisage to have taken the lead in digital investments, and to have at least 500k to 1 million core active users in the app. At Fundsfy we focus on the user experience (UX) and user interface (UI) for the user as a high priority. We truly believe that with focus on customer feedback, and constant innovation and improvements we can make this achievement possible.
4. How do you build the right partnerships to accelerate speed and drive innovation?
Fundsfy was built on a hybrid programming language called ionic, which has allowed Fundsfy to build its development faster than an average native app. Normal native application coding needs to be written differently for both iOS and Android, but with an ionic framework we have the ability to write the code for both iOS and Android all in one coding language. This has given us the opportunity and speed to build our app in half the time, and allows us to focus on improvements and not waste time simply developing the core functionality of the app. Our team focuses on new ways to innovate and enhance traditional models, and to create the bridge between our partners. For example, Fundsfy’s partnerships with investment firms, insurance companies, and the like is accelerating growth for us and our partners, and helping our users in the ability to invest fast, and digitally making Fundsfy the pioneers in diversifying the market.
Another interesting partnership that drives innovation is our physical bank aggregator, which allows our users to add all of their physical bank accounts into one wallet. This bank aggregation feature really makes it easy for the user to have a 360º view of all of their accounts all in one app. Simplifying the ability to manage your money and making it quick and secure to transfer money between different bank accounts, investments, and more.
5. If you could give one piece of advice to a person who has an idea for a neobank what would it be?
The advice I would give is to be ready for many challenges and obstacles. The financial, and banking sector has a lot of rules and regulations. And not all the regulations are the same in different countries, every territory has their own different set of rules. Aside from the regulations, there is the difficulty of building the technology to digitize investments, and to make the app fast and user-friendly. Plus you constantly need to stay ahead in the market because with technology it is always changing and evolving. It is important to keep innovation in mind and to think of the business from the user’s perspective.