Five banking startups: back office optimatition and retail analytics

You can get a sense of the types of projects and applications of cloud native banks are interested in by looking over these Capital One startup contest winners:

– Credit Kudos – an alternative credit scoring platform that measures credit worthiness using real-time transaction data captured automatically from the borrower, providing a transparent and up-to-date view of a person’s credit profile. Freddy Kelly, CEO of Credit Kudos, said: “Our aim is to change the way credit scoring works, from an opaque black box system to something that allows individuals to get the most value from their data. As a pioneer in lending, we believe Capital One is the perfect partner for us to bring Credit Kudos to the market.”
– Multisense – a secure end-to-end solution put together as a user-friendly mobile platform which includes face, voice and fingerprint recognition which can be combined with GPS and NFC. Aviram Siboni, CEO of Multisense, said: “Being part of this accelerator programme is an amazing opportunity. Not only to get the chance to join forces with Capital One, but also to bring our biometrics authentication platform a step closer to the UK market – it’s such an incredible time for us to innovate alongside Capital One.”
– Pariti – a mobile banking app enabling users to take control of their money, reduce interest payments and start saving. The app connects to separate bank accounts and credit cards and automatically identifies income and bills so users know what they can safely spend each week. Matthew Ford, CEO and Founder of Pariti, said “It is extremely exciting to have been selected to go forward in this process and I look forward to working very closely with Capital One to further develop Pariti and enhance the future of banking.”
– Warwick Analytics – a provider of automated predictive analytics that can remove the 80% of time data scientists need to organise and process data prior to analysis. Dan Somers, CEO of Warwick Analytics, said: “We’re delighted to be part of Growth Labs and working with Capital One – one of the most innovative financial services companies. We are looking forward to collaborating to develop disruptive solutions for them and for this sector.”
– WealRo – a real-time assistant for savings and investing that aims to use AI technology and machine learning to find areas of a user’s budget where savings can be made. Owen Haggith-Khonje, WealRo’s founder, said: “Growth Labs presents a fantastic opportunity for WealRo to receive world-class mentoring, with the hope of building a long term relationship with Capital One that positively shapes the financial landscape.”

There’s a mixture of optimizing existing services (better authenticating, credit scoring, improving data analysis), but also analytics-drive services that encourage customers to keep more money in the bank (savings).

Source: Capital One announces finalists for startup accelerator

Link: Billionaire CEO and investor Marc Benioff says unicorn startups manipulated private markets and he’s done investing in them

“The unicorn thing, I’ve been saying for a while now, is not great,” Benioff told Stephanie Ruhle on Bloomberg GO earlier this week. “The reason why it’s not great is not necessarily that these companies are not worth this much money or whatever — we don’t actually know because they’ve manipulated the private markets to achieve these valuations.”

“There is no reason why these companies who claim to be worth billions of dollars and making billions of dollars to stay private,” he continued. “They need to get out on the market, run their companies with the right level of governance, and let the market rationalize these valuations.”

“Being a public company is good. It forces us to make sure we keep the cadence…we have to keep our eye on the ball,” Benioff said. “The unicorn mania that’s going on, that’s dangerous for our Silicon Valley economy.”

Hey, he’s got all sorts of biases where this view favors him and Salesforce…but that doesn’t mean it’s wrong-think.

Source: Billionaire CEO and investor Marc Benioff says unicorn startups manipulated private markets and he’s done investing in them

Beyond OpenStack, Piston positioning itself as a general cloud app installer

So far, the 4-year-old San Francisco-based company has worked to make deploying OpenStack as easy as downloading an app to a smartphone. The new version of CloudOS extends that capability to Hadoop and Spark on bare metal, and it plans to add the container orchestrators Kubernetes, Mesos and Docker Swarm by mid-year.

CEO Jim Morrisroe describes Piston as a “cluster orchestration and distributed systems automation company” focused on cloud-native, and made up of folks from VMware, NASA and others who have been part of the OpenStack community all along.

Also, as with this piece, Susan Hall has been a nice addition to

Beyond OpenStack, Piston positioning itself as a general cloud app installer

StackStorm automates and monitors a core DevOps asset: the software delivery pipeline – 451 Report

I’ve been speaking with StackStorm on and off for a few months now. I finally got around to writing up a report on them, available for clients.

Here’s the 451 Take:

StackStorm fancies itself an automation company, and with experience from Opalis Software, it’s little wonder. What’s interesting about its approach is that it’s automating the DevOps pipeline, including the continuous integration/continuous delivery (CI/CD) process. This may seem like a minor concern, namely, working on developer tools. And ‘developers don’t pay for anything,’ right? However, in cloud native application and DevOps teams, the CI/CD pipeline is the core factory for a company: it’s a mission-critical process that needs as much monitoring and automation as production itself. If your business depends on being able to deploy new code every week – or daily – anything that slows down that pipeline is bad, very bad. Not only that, integrating the pipeline with production monitoring and automation helps realize the full continuous delivery vision. Hence, StackStorm finds itself in an interesting position, vision-wise: we’ll take care of the new mission-critical asset for you, the DevOps pipeline. Few other vendors have that scope of vision, at the moment at least.

Check out the full report behind 451’s paywallapply for a trial if needed, there’s great stuff back there!

StackStorm automates and monitors a core DevOps asset: the software delivery pipeline – 451 Report

The single over-arching theme is this idea is that one should not compete, one should try to differentiate really hard. You want to do things that are one of a kind, you want to do something like a monopoly. You don’t want to do things that put you in cut-throat competition, like opening a restaurant.

More for the “tech world is not normal world” files.