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Fintech startups from across the country and from the Netherlands and Ireland flocked to the Statehouse Convention Center in Little Rock on Monday for the first-ever VenCent Fintech Summit.
Hosted by the Venture Center of Little Rock, the summit aims to connect fintechs with potential clients – mostly banks – but another benefit many exhibitors cited was the connections they have now made with fintechs that complement their work .
The Simmons Bank, Arvest Bank and Discover booths were among those set up by established companies, along with the Acxiom and Euronet lounges at the center of the exhibition space on the first day of the three-day event.
Euronet, a global company, has a software development arm in Little Rock with 130 employees and a new product that Matt Niles, dDirector of Client Solutions & Products, will be promoting in a Tuesday afternoon breakout session.
Smaller exhibiting companies that are headquartered or have an office in Arkansas were eGiftify, Data Driven Partners and BOND.AI.
Egiftify provides white-label digital gifting, marketing, rewards and payments technology to businesses of all sizes and started by supporting The Terrace restaurant in Little Rock, owned by the family of the fintech’s founder, Susi Barakat.
Data Driven Partners, a two-woman company led by Mallory Van Dover and Jennifer Carlisle, is focused on providing the actionable data banks and credit unions need to be efficient and competitive to launch the success of their Community Reinvestment Act initiatives and to measure and mitigate credit risk.
Bond.ai recently launched a unique network of financial institutions and employers, providing tools to help both grow. It is designed to connect banks, credit unions, fintechs and non-integrated businesses to increase profitability and generate a strong customer acquisition pipeline.
Additionally, several signs at the fairgrounds directed summit attendees to a number of out-of-state startups currently participating in this year’s FIS Fintech Accelerator program hosted by the Venture Center and sponsored by fintech giant FIS of Jacksonville, Florida , as well as the state.
From left: Arcanum Technology executives Brian Finnan, Frank Brice and Brooks Brown on the VenCent Fintech Summit exhibition floor in Little Rock. The company demonstrated a strong, four-digit password that never needs to be changed by the end user.
These include Tapcheck, with its enterprise-grade technology that enables employees to access their paychecks sooner — and thus avoid predatory payday loans. Next to his booth were fraud transaction monitor Sygno and risk management company Sardine.
Redactable, as the name suggests, aims to help banks redact documents correctly to meet compliance requirements. Neural Payments’ technology aims to allow customers of different banks to transfer money between them without having to sign up for the same application as CashApp.
Many of the other startups with booths had graduated from either the Fintech Accelerator or the ICBA ThinkTECH Accelerator hosted by the Venture Center. These included sales and marketing-focused company Fi Works and Plinqit, which aims to automate how consumers save.
One of several standout technologies was nKode from Arcanum Technology of Athens, Georgia. It demonstrated a secure four-digit password that never needs to be changed by the end user.
There were more than 70 fintechs at the fair, far too many to name them all and what they are up to. But their business goals have ranged from automating tedious functions to enabling collaboration to simplifying processes as complex as applying for a mortgage.