Norwegian fintech has grown from a very small sector to one with a large presence in a very short time. This is because the financial services landscape is changing. Everything from the blockchain to artificial intelligence is affecting consumer behavior, which then prompts changes in business models and financial services. This has caused the thriving fintech community to become the perfect breeding ground for technological innovations in the financial sector.
Right now, Norway has a very technically savvy population. With approximately 80 percent of residents using smartphones, user adoption of financial technology is much more rapid. This makes sense since Norway has the best digital infrastructure in the world. This infrastructure has paved the way for 90 percent of residents to use online banking services. BankID is the perfect example of this. This digital identification system is owned by the banks and 3.5 million Norwegians. It keeps transactions secure, and the system is completely compliant.
The Norwegian financial sector is innovative and scalable. This is why so many companies in the fintech sector are focusing on the banking sector and the solutions that it can offer. Below, you will read about some of the hottest Fintech companies out of the Nordics and how they are influencing the banking sector and much more.
Skandiabanken is a company that is making investments in Quantfolio, which offers robo-advisory services. In fact, Skandiabanken is the largest shareholder with ownership of 39.9 percent of the shares. This is an important investment because it is a step toward making digital saving options even more user-friendly for private citizens. This is a form of asset management that is automated and simple, allowing each individual to have access to individualized solutions.
As for Skandiabanken itself, it is a forward-thinking company that believes in innovation and how technology can drive that change. The company’s focus is on the savings industry because it has been stagnant for quite some time. By offering customers a cost-efficient savings platform, customer satisfaction will increase, and so will trust because of an increase in the level of transparency that is afforded to users. There’s a lot of potential for Nordic fintech companies to succeed in the asset management and digital savings market. By using Quantfolio in its mission, Skandiabanken will be able to use its knowledge and competence to strengthen its long-term savings focus.
SpareBank 1 SR-Bank
SpareBank 1 SR-Bank, formerly known as Sparebanken Rogaland, is Norway’s largest savings bank. It has made two investments: Boost.AI, a company that specializes in natural language processing, and Vester, a platform used by banks for lending. In collaboration with Vester, a crowdlending platform is being created that can revolutionize the lending industry. It might be a whole new way for personal loans and other loan types to be processed and handled overall.
Boost.AI is a virtual assistant. One of its newest features is the ability to authenticate identity. Nonetheless, its first product is the ability to create virtual employees that can take care of specific tasks on behalf of their human counterparts. The software is unique, as it uses algorithms that handle challenges that the business world is faced with every day. It’s a way to work smarter in a more cost-effective way, and it’s making its way into the financial sector. The fact is that artificial intelligence has the ability to work faster than humans. Because of this, people are free to take care of other important tasks.
As for the Vester collaboration, it focuses on crowdlending, which is similar to crowdfunding. It’s a peer-to-peer lending system where investors lend to borrowers for a return. It is a model that has existed for a while, particularly in the real estate market where fast and large returns can be realized. Now, crowdlending is making its way into other lending markets.
Nordea and Spliff
Nordea and Spliff are currently working together to make saving money a fun and social activity. Nordea is the largest bank in the Nordic region and among the largest in Europe. It caters to individuals and businesses and has been doing so for 200 years. This type of longevity is only achieved when innovation is embraced. That is what Nordea is doing in its collaboration with Spliff. If saving money is made to be more fun, then more people are likely to start stashing their cash instead of spending it. People like fun and games, even when doing something like saving money and planning for the future.
Klarna is a company based in Stockholm, Sweden, that was founded in 2005. This is a company that provides online payment services for merchants. The way it works is customers can buy goods online by entering just the email and postcode. After entering this information, the customer completes payment and delivery details. The payment moves through Klarna so that the merchant is paid. It gives the consumer a secure way to make purchases with online storefronts.
Klarna is different from similar services because the risk is taken away from the buyer and the seller. Klarna bears 100 percent of the risk. Of all the e-commerce transactions taking place online in Sweden, Klarna is handling approximately 40 percent of them.
Trustly is another Nordic fintech company located in Stockholm, Sweden. It’s also a name that many people recognize. It has been around since 2008 and is an e-payment solution that uses direct payment technology. Trusty stores banking information, but Trustly makes purchases on behalf of the customer so that the customer’s banking information isn’t revealed at any point during the transaction. It assumes most of the risk that is incurred during the transaction, which gives the buyer and seller a degree of protection.
Trustly has tens of millions of customers and is a trusted payment method accepted by the very large online sports betting and casino market in Europe.
Axo Finans is an online lender, offering personal loans that can be used to finance cars, consolidate debts like credit card debt, perform home improvements, go on holiday, and much more. You can borrow between NOK 10.000 and NOK 500.000, and no collateral is required.
What makes Axo Finans unique is its fast application process. Once the application is complete, multiple offers are presented so you can get the best possible offer. This is a way to receive multiple loan offers without having to complete multiple applications. It’s a rather simple system. Plus, the loan is received quickly, as well, because all you need is a bank account, so the money is direct deposited into the account.
Axo Finans uses BankID to aid in the identification process. Everything is done electronically so the loan can be applied for and acquired without having to leave the comfort of your home or office.
The Bottom Line
Overall, the Nordics are enjoying a digital revolution and leading the way in the meantime. Being at the top of the list is a big deal, especially with these countries focusing on having a high level of stability among its people. Look at Norway, for instance. It is home to some of the happiest people on earth. How the country embraces technology, the mark it has made in the fintech sector, and how the people are served are all factors that contribute to this happiness.