How are fintechs responding to coronavirus?

By Matt High
A team of UK fintech companies have created an app to assist freelance workers during their COVID-19 isolation, while others are working with SMEs A gr...

A team of UK fintech companies have created an app to assist freelance workers during their COVID-19 isolation, while others are working with SMEs

A group of financial services startup companies and fintechs have developed a proof of concept app that will help self-employed people in the UK during the coronavirus crisis.

Finextra reported on 24 March that the team, which includes self-isolating employees from 11:FS, Capital on Tap, Mazuma, Coconut and more have worked together to develop the technology. 

The idea revolves around an app that allows sole traders to prove loss of income due to coronavirus isolation. Finextra said the app uses Open Banking to collect banking data, thus proving income and predicting any future loss. 

The team believes, it said, that the technology will let banks release loans faster to help businesses recover from disruption. 

Covid Credit

Currently the team, known as Covid Credit, is working with stakeholders from Her Majesty’s Treasury, HMRC and others to move towards testing and a possible roll out of the technology. 

CEO of Credit Kudos, Freddy Kelly was quoted as saying the team came together “to design a concept that verifies the income trend of self-employed workers. The process features self-certification combined with impartially retrieved banking data to deliver a comprehensive view of someone’s income.”

From this, said Kelly, the government will be able to assess self-employed people as it does full-time employed. 

It was reported that the teams have created a standalone Python web app that runs on Google Cloud. This interacts with the API of Credit Kudos, which aggregates data from individual bank accounts and applies pattern recognition algorithms. 

This recognises key income figures for the bank statement.

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Fintech taskforce and SMEs

Another group of fintechs from the lending sector have created a taskforce that will help SMEs to receive funding to counter the coronavirus crisis. 

The taskforce includes digital lending platform Trade Ledger, Nimbla, Wiserfunding and NorthRiow, a remote client onboarding platform. 

It will offer an origination and underwriting platform that allows banks and lenders to virtually and digitally deploy funds to businesses that are facing cash flow problems as a result of coronavirus. 

Finextra reported that the platform can support any type of term loans, invoice finance and asset finance and that funds could be deployed in days. 

Trade Ledge CEO, Martin McCann was reported as saying that the outbreak of COVID-19 was “putting immense financial pressure on global supply chains”, and that “now more than ever, SMEs need reliable cash flow if they are to stay in business.”

Elsewhere, mobile banking fintechs Revolut and Monzo have denied rumours that they are facing financial difficulties as a result of the impact of coronavirus on the economy.

For more information on all topics for FinTech, please take a look at the latest edition of FinTech magazine.

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