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Alex Mifsud is the co-founder and CEO of Weavr, a member of the Finnovating platform. Weavr provides a scalable platform that lets any company add banking to their services via APIs – quickly & at low cost.
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Finnovating (F): Please tell us a little bit about Weavr.
Alex Mifsud (AM): Weavr is a financial technology company that enables innovators to easily integrate financial services into their products. Businesses of all sizes and in diverse industries use Weavr to issue financial accounts and payment cards for their customers, empowering them to collect and make payments in the context of digital applications. These applications, together with the banking services integrated within them, are shaping the future of work, healthcare, education, real estate, and other services sectors.
My co-founder Adrian and I spent many years dealing with this problem of contextual security and compliance in our previous businesses. An app to pay for parking has completely different risks to an app to buy a car, so there isn’t a single solution that works for every situation. We were always grappling with having to build, integrate and run financial solutions.
Our big idea is that we discovered a way to describe financial solutions that makes it easy to understand the risks and to create a way to manage them. We could then automate this approach and save many years of time by avoiding all the specialist effort that goes into designing embedded financial solutions, legal drafting, and building custom risk management solutions that are usually needed.
We also wanted to find a way to make it possible for our clients to build and run these solutions for themselves, then we would be able to serve ten times more. As an engineer, along with some of my colleagues, we thought about what a solution might look like and started unpacking the barriers and finding technical as well as operational solutions to them. The result is Weavr.
(F): You are the current CEO of Weavr. How does Weavr fit in the UK FinTech ecosystem?
(AM): Weavr is the only start-up providing embedded finance technology that makes the vitally important, but hugely complicated, way of managing banking and payments accessible to all. Weavr is enabling non-financial businesses to bank their customers simply and safely. From quick and easy technical integration and simplified customer onboarding through to low set-up fees and transaction costs, Weavr is acting as the innovators’ hero, powering innovation and disruption. Non-financial digital businesses can now run embedded banking services like any other digital software – as simple as building a checkout page on a website.
Traditionally, embedding financial services such as banking and payments within a non-financial digital business has been complex, lengthy, and inherently unsafe. Businesses have simultaneously lacked the technical capability and not had the risk appetite or expertise to manage and understand compliance or data security. In short, they have not possessed the fundamental capabilities to provide banking and payment services in the digital age.
With competing alternatives today, a digital business spends in excess of £250,000 and takes at least 9 months to design, implement, and launch a solution before the first transaction can happen. This is a real barrier to adoption for non-financial service businesses of all sizes and it stifles innovation.
Weavr revolutionary technology simplifies the process of embedding banking and payment services. Via our plug-and-play platform, any digital business can use our unique financial plug-ins, to build their bespoke embedded finance solution and be ready to process transactions in weeks, at a fraction of the cost previously considered the norm. With Weavr, businesses can go live within a month having spent less than £2,000.
(F): What is Weavr’s value proposition? How do you want to help customers?
(AM): Weavr’s mission is to make building and integrating banking services like any other digital software – simple, flexible, and accessible to all innovators while ensuring that it is safe for the financial institutions providing such banking services. Weavr believes that, by making it possible for customers to access relevant banking services precisely where and when they need them, it will enable banking to deliver greater value to society.
Weavr offers endless possibilities for businesses to improve the way they serve their customers, for example allowing a grocery delivery app to offer digital wallets to their riders for direct tipping or providing cashback to their customers. Healthcare providers can organise all the payments connected with a course of treatment to be made to a dedicated account and then automate payments to the clinicians, labs, and facilities involved. What’s more, a fitness app can become the means for sports brands or insurers to reward active lifestyles.
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(F): How do you think Weavr will contribute to transforming the Embedded Finance sector?
(AM): Embedded finance is the new and unstoppable force that is revolutionising business, just like ecommerce did 20 years ago. The shift to delivering financial services within non-financial applications is just starting to accelerate but has the potential to be the next evolution in financial services delivery. If the bank branch was 1.0, banking apps 2.0, then financial services 3.0 is this embedded form of finance.
Traditionally, only companies with big budgets could integrate embedded banking. But now, with Weavr, any business can. Our revolutionary plug-and-play solution transforms the embedded finance sector due to its simplicity and accessibility. Innovators of all sizes can now connect financial services with real human needs in the context of when and where they need them.
Across all industries, those who have successfully integrated embedded finance capabilities into their offering have disrupted the industry and won. Every innovator disrupting and redefining an industry, like Uber, Airbnb, and Delivery Hero, all have embedded finance as a central part of their strategy.
(F): What is your vision for Weavr in the next five to ten years?
(AM): Our vision is that most financial services are purchased and consumed through digital products and services that serve broader and more fundamental customer needs like health, education, work, family, and leisure.
The focus will be more on the benefits of banking and less on the banking itself. You can get very creative by having banking disappear into the background. A wearable manufacturer is now using Weavr in an almost philosophical manner by creating a platform to reward wellness and social interactions! Weavr exists to connect financial services with real human needs in a digital world.
(F): What made you decide to become part of the Finnovating community?
(AM): We were excited to connect with the Finnovating community and be involved in conversations with like minded FinTech people. Ranging from legal experts to insurance and investors, this new platform will allow us to connect on a global scale to learn and grow from others within the community.
(F): How do you think Finnovating can help Weavr in your upcoming phases?
(AM): Our biggest need is to drive awareness of what embedded finance can do for all types of digital businesses and how our unique approach makes embedded finance accessible to all serious innovators. Our network is already sending this message out to the market, and we want more and more of this. We want to reach every single innovator in Europe who can benefit from adding embedded finance to their business.
(F): What do you think Weavr can contribute in being part of the platform?
(AM): Innovation within the FintTech ecosystem continues at pace and collaboration is essential to help meet current and future challenges. Weavr can help bring greater value to the community by sharing its expertise and innovations within embedded finance.
(F): What are your expectations for the first global FinTech platform?
(AM): Finnovating will allow us to connect and talk to more businesses than before! We love any opportunities to connect with and learn from others so the matching function will be a great opportunity for us to see the next best trends and the chance to connect with the entire global financial community. alex mifsud weavr ceo
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