Digital identity, payments, blockchain and financial inclusion, the top trends in BBVA Open Talent

Digital identity, payments, blockchain and financial inclusion, the top trends in BBVA Open Talent
Digital identity, payments, blockchain and financial inclusion, the top trends in BBVA Open Talent


The transformation of the financial ecosystem is everywhere, and every day sees the arrival of new fintech trends bringing further disruptive innovations. Apps for authenticating identity, new payment methods, blockchain technology applications, tools to fight against fraud and improvements in financial inclusion are just a few of these trends.

These same trends can also be seen in the projects of the winners of BBVA Open Talent 2016, a competition now in its 8th edition that continues to drive the spirit of transformation of the financial ecosystem.

Blockchain and authentication

The management of identity and authentication processes is critical in the financial world, so solutions in this area are very highly prized. Cambridge Blockchain, winner of the US and rest of the world edition of the competition, provides a tool to help financial institutions eliminate unnecessary steps in compliance while offering an improved user experience.

New payment methods

Online banking, and above all mobile banking, are constantly undergoing innovations in the form of new payment channels. Numerous startups are opting to develop pioneering apps and tools in this area.

PayKey, an Israeli startup and a winner in the European edition, proposes a project for a system of secure payments through social networks by means of its own keyboard that can be downloaded onto a cellphone. This solution exploits existing networks to create an intuitive and simple payment experience: users can instantly transfer money during a conversation with their friends and families.

Financial Inclusion

In response to growing demand for financial inclusion in the digital age, BBVA Open Talent decided in its 2015 edition to present a special prize for the most interesting project in this area.

Musoni, another winner in the European edition, received the award in this category. This Dutch startup has developed a system that uses technology to help financial institutions to optimize their microfinance services, improve efficiency, reduce costs, and broaden their reach in rural areas where most of the population is outside the formal banking system.

The fight against fraud

Fraud prevention has become key in online transformation processes, so many institutions are keen to explore new possibilities.

Precognitive, winner of the US and the rest of the world edition, has developed a fraud prevention technology in electronic devices. Its app combines artificial intelligence with behavioral analysis to detect and prevent fraud in real time.

Digital transformation

All these trends fuel the current process of digital transformation in the financial ecosystem and place the customer at the heart of the strategies.

The solutions in this area include particularly the two Latin American winners.

Alegra is a cloud-based app that helps SMEs manage their finances: it enables them to invoice, manage their expenditure and bank transactions and create smart reports from the information received from both the website and mobile devices. It also allows financial institutions to communicate more effectively with these micro-companies and facilitates access to these customers.

Another startup, Kobra, is a collection network via mobile devices. This tool contributes transparency and efficiency to the process of home collection, and connects collectors with financial institutions.

Encouraging innovation

BBVA Open Talent competition is a manifestation of BBVA’s commitment to promoting innovation in the banking and financial ecosystem.  Aimed at recently created start-ups all over the world, BBVA Open Talent seeks out the most disruptive ideas in the area of financial services.

Over the last five years, more than 3,250 companies have taken part in this program, and the winners of past editions have attracted over 116 million euros in investment.

“BBVA Open Talent is BBVA’s contribution to fostering the fintech ecosystem, supporting businesses that will improve the financial lives of customers through technology”, says Shamir Karkal, BBVA’s head of Open APIs.

This competition is now in its eighth edition, and continues to encourage the entrepreneurial spirit that will transform the world.  

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