...and a little teaser for next year
A small step for man, a giant leap for Norwegian fintech. Inspired by our colleagues in Sweden and Denmark and spurred on by Innovation Norway and Visit Norway, we figured it was about time that Norway arranged its very first Fintech Week. Many pieces are already in place, and we really look forward to sharing more information with you about this over the New Year.
Sustainability: less talk, more action
Another of our focus areas this year has been sustainable fintech. We have worked towards increasing our member's knowledge of the EU Taxonomy, ESG reporting, and how to implement sustainability in their business models. The clusters resource group in sustainability has also undergone a strategy process facilitated by Deloitte, where they defined what sustainability means for the cluster, which arenas we will focus on, and what we want to achieve going forward. We’re just getting started down this path, however, so if you feel the call to join us in this effort, don’t hesitate to reach out to us.
One of our many cluster projects this year also has ties to sustainability. Together with Sparebanken Vest, Sparebanken Sogn & Fjordane, and Quantfol.io we completed the first stage of building an ESG scoring model for their investment funds. You can read more in-depth about this and our other projects on our website, as well as our resource groups in Open Banking, KYC/AML, Sustainability, and Customer service.
Get in the Zone
Speaking of our website; we’re currently developing a "Member Zone" with exclusive access for cluster members, where you can download reports, re-watch events and courses, browse cluster benefits, and more. We’re also in the works of making both a Norwegian fintech mapping and a regulatory radar where members can look up regulations that are either being implemented in Norway or are on their way from the EU. Member Zone will be up and running sometime in Q1 2022, so make sure to check this out when the time comes.
No rest for the fintechs
It has been a great year for crowdfunding in general, and particularly for our members Dealflow and Folkeinvest. They've presented several of our members on their platforms, such as Horde, who for a while held the Norwegian crowdfunding record. Just like a ping-pong game, the crowdfunding record moved from one platform to the other, and then back again. For a while, Dealflows' campaign for Citybox smashed the record with 28MNOK, whilst Folkeinvests campaign for Way AS currently has taken back the record with its 31 MNOK (still ongoing). Last but not least, cluster member Kameo had ambitions to crowdfund real-estate loans for 1BNOK (!) in 2021, something they managed to do already in October 2021.
Norwegian fintech is second to none and is increasingly making its presence known on the international stage. A recurring theme in the news this year has been Norwegian fintechs going international, such as member companies Diggecard, Ticketco, Strise, and Firi to name a few. The strategy often involves mergers with smaller tech companies to have all the tools they need to scale into the Nordics. This has been the case for both Stacc and Signicat. Vipps has also taken a clear position within Nordic payments, leading the merger with Danish Mobile Pay and Finnish Pivo and placing their headquarters in Oslo.
From the EU with love
Additionally, NCE Finance Innovation submitted a proposal for the Horizon Europe project on secure digital identity together with Signicat and a European consortium. We´ll find out later this winter if the European Commission selects the project - fingers crossed!
Several of our members have also been supported in their applications for the EIC (European Innovation Council) Accelerator and other members have qualified to apply for a grant from the new support scheme "Women in Tech".
From the team
This year we got to welcome two new colleagues onboard the team; Roger and Torstein. We also had the pleasure of having four interns from HVL and BI choose Finance Innovation as their internship placement. We look forward to welcoming new interns in 2022.
The end...for now
Sorry for the long read, but this really is just the tip of the iceberg! With so much going on, it's almost hard to believe that nearly half of our time as a cluster has been happening under the shadow of a global pandemic. We are so grateful to all of our members that have been a part of our journey so far and made all of this happen. Stay safe and healthy, and we’re looking forward to an exciting new year in fintech with you all.
Christmas greetings from
Atle, Rea, Kristoffer, Håkon, Torstein and Roger