Swift in Brussels has announced the five finalists of its third annual Innotribe Startup Challenge. The contest is meant to uncover the most promising innovative financial technology companies. The chosen companies will compete against winners from earlier London and Singapore showcases at Swift's annual conference in Boston in October, the company said in a press release.
Representatives from ten early-stage startups and five growth-stage companies introduced their technology to an audience of global investors, venture capitalists and industry experts at the Innotribe event.
The early-stage startup finalists are Epiphyte, which makes software that lets financial institutions' systems "talk" to crypto-financial networks; Lending Robot, which automates loan selection and investment in peer-to-peer lending transactions by using machine-learning algorithms and real-time scoring; and Standard Treasury, which builds and maintains APIs businesses can use to connect to their banks for funds transfers and other transactions.
Another two companies earned a spot in the growth-stage innovator category: Juntos Finanzas, a creator of personal finance tools
for cash-based households; and Wallaby Financial, which provides technology that analyzes credit card usage for rewards, credit limit, statement due date, linked bonuses and other offers.
The startups' showcase was organized in New York because it is "the fastest-growing fintech startup ecosystems in the Americas " that now ranks second behind Silicon Valley, Fabian Vandenreydt, head of markets management for Swift Innotribe and the Swift Institute, said in a press release.
A total of 47 semi-finalists participated in the 2014 competition, according to Swift, a member-owned global cooperative whose technology, products and services connect more than 10,000 banks and other financial institutions in 212 countries. The company says it created the Swift Innotribe initiative to offer a global medium where people, networks, startups and innovators can connect with investors, strategists, and decision-makers in an effort "to bridge the gap between the startup ecosystem and the financial services industry."