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James Brown

April Newsletter – InsurTech report launch, WealthTech launch and more

Dear Readers,

Already a month has passed since the tragedy in Christchurch, it didn’t take long for the New Zealand tech sector to collectively condemn the terrorist and his shocking use of technology to live-stream his violence. Not only did we condemn the attack and pay our respects to the family and friends of the victims, but there was an underlying message that called for more industry and government cohesion.

So, it is exciting to know that FinTechNZ has been invited to Parliament to present to the National Caucus on the FinTech sector and the opportunities we have within the ecosystem, I will share the outcome after our presentation next month.

InsurTechNZ and EY New Zealand collaborated in late 2018 to write the InsurTech Landscape report “InsurTech emerging at pace” which was released at EY Auckland last Wednesday.

The report was a comprehensive stock take and analysis of the Insurtech eco-system, open to those who consider themselves InsurTechs. Most respondents were New Zealand InsurTechs, technology vendors plus other industry participants. Read the full outline of the launch and download the EY/InsurTech NZ industry report here.

Last week we launched WealthTechNZ and enjoyed fantastic levels of support with 20 people from across the industry attending the initial meeting. This is a new Working Group within FinTechNZ that is being established to support the needs of the WealthTech sector of New Zealand, helping to connect, promote and advance the industry.

One exciting pilot is with Choice, from 13 May you will be able to pay with Choice on Wellington’s most popular street – Cuba Street! This pilot will last for two weeks only so please head down to Cuba Street and take part if you can. If you would like to see Choice payments in action, please check out this video.

Now in its third year the 2019 Kiwi Fintech Accelerator programme is bringing together New Zealand’s leaders in financial services including KiwibankXero, SBS and Centrality to help build the future of financial services in New Zealand. The Kiwi Fintech Accelerator will be run out of Xero’s Rewired co-working space in Auckland, with satellite options in Wellington and Invercargill, making the program more accessible than ever to FinTech founders. Another great example of the Fintech industry working together to support innovation, so if your organisation wants to get involved please get in touch.

To build support for the Kiwi Fintech Accelerator, Xero and Kiwibank have collaborated to create the Kiwi Fintech Startup Challenge. This challenge is for Fintech fanatics with drive, direction and vision. They’ll be given the chance to bring their ideas to life with the support from the best of the Fintech community. This two-day challenge takes place in Auckland, 4-5 May.

As part of our ongoing effort to promote diversity, we are keen supporters of ShadowTech which is also taking place in May. This is a fantastic initiative encouraging girls from years nine to eleven to pursue careers in the tech industry, with the help of inspiring mentors. For further information and to become a mentor please visit here.

With all this activity it’s no wonder our membership continues to grow and diversify, I am so excited to see some of the new members coming on board and getting involved in the growing number of working groups. Want to be interviewed to share who you are and what you do?

TechWeek is just around the corner and I will be speaking on TechWeek TV on Friday around Open Data, you will see me at the Clearpoint event discussing “The Future of Financial Services” and I am involved in a discussion with Delta Insurance and Everedge Global talking about “Intangible Assets” all over the country, as well as supporting a number of our members’ events, such as DLA Piper’s. I am looking forward to the discussion around “Post Brexit and what it means for NZ companies”. With so much uncertainty also comes opportunity. Check out the TechWeek19 website for the complete rundown.

I hope you’re achieving as much this Autumn as we are. If you’re looking for some inspiration, make sure you get involved!

Happy Easter.

Have a great break,

James Brown
General Manager


Our newest Working Group WealthTech’s first event will be taking place at 5.30pm on Monday 20 May at Forsyth Barr in Auckland. Registrations open soon, details will be on our event page.

It’s one month until Techweek19 kicks off from 20-26 May. There are hundreds of events taking place across the country. Make sure you check out the Techweek TV schedule, which includes webcast The power of incubators and accelerators for start-ups.

Attend the CFA Society New Zealand, Investment Conference; Alternative Finance and Alternative Investments 22 May in Auckland.

Join EdTechNZ and TechWomen on 13 June in Wellington20 June in Auckland and 26 June in Christchurch to discuss how to achieve diversity in the tech sector. Registrations open soon.

Save the date for the Canterbury Tech Summit on 12 September in Christchurch.

Register for the 2019 Export Essentials workshops running throughout New Zealand from April to July.

The 2019 NZ Cyber Security Summit will examine the changing cyber landscape and what that means for the modern business ecosystem, taking place on 15 October at Te Papa, in Wellington.

Register now for The Kiwi FinTech Startup Challenge, take part in a two-day challenge to rethink the world of Fintech, 4-5 May in Auckland.

Get your tickets to the Hi-Tech Awards Gala Dinner on 24 May in Auckland, taking place during Techweek19.

Register for the Women in Insurance Summit 2019, 30 July in Auckland before 10 May and receive an Early Bird rate. FinTechNZ members are also eligible for a 10% discount, contact us for the link. You can also nominate your entrant for the Women in Insurance Awards.

Upcoming international events include Innovate Finance 29-30 April in London, London Tech Week 10-13 June, London FinTech Week, 5-10 July and the UK’s largest FinTech Conference and Trade show FinTech Connect, 3-4 December in London.

Join the conversations happening in Europe in 2019 at the European Payments Summit 25-26 April in the Netherlands.

Hong Kong FinTech Week is back on 4-8 November 2019 you can pre register now and get further information.

We are always keen to promote and support member activity, so if you have any upcoming events to share please get in touch we are happy to promote through our channels.


Don’t underestimate the power of the fintech revolution! ‘History is replete with people’s failures to anticipate the impact of technological change. Are we making the same mistake with fintech? Could it, in fact, be the next revolutionary technology to boost economic growth?’

Read the New Zealand tech community’s top trends for 2019 with predictions from FinTechNZ, Callaghan Innovation, Soul Machines and more.

If you are looking to work in Hong Kong InvestHK has numerous avenues of support for SMEs and Start Up. For more information please contact Andrew Denticefrom the FinTechNZ International Working Group.

Learn how London-based ClauseMatch is expanding into Asia Pacific by launching Southeast Asian operations out of Singapore.

Are MGAs: the fast track to insurance innovation? an insightful article from Matthew Grant, Executive Director at Abernite.

Financial companies in the MENA region are opening up to partnerships with global fintech startups.

UAE‘s National Bank of Fujairah is looking for regional and global startups with a track record in deploying AI in personal financial management. Startups can apply here.

Finablr (UAE Exchange)
Global #payments and #foreign_exchange platform Finablr is hungry for Integrated #IoT cross-border payment solutions and disruptive mobile wallet ideas.

Mobile wallet of the future startups can apply here. Integrated IoT cross border payments startups can apply here.

There’s only one week left to submit your idea to the 2019 ACORD InsurTech Innovation Challenge, the world’s premier event for innovation in insurance technology. Applications must be received on or before 26 April.


BNZ and Collective Campus launch Go SME Grow program with an international search for innovators and entrepreneurs to help grow NZ businesses.

Congratulations to EverEdge’s CEO, Paul Adams, and Head of Strategy, Paul Davies, who have been named among the world’s elite intellectual property strategists in the 2019 IAM Strategy 300 rankings.

Congratulations to Sphere Identity’s CEO Katherine Noall who was awarded the “Rising Innovator” at the KNOW2019 conference. They have also launched blockchain-based easy sign-up system.

Mastercard launch the first ever Mastercard Digital-First card to see an overview of the product click here.

Congratulations to our members who are finalists for the Hi-Tech AwardsIBM in the Best Contribution to the NZ Hi-Tech Sector by an Internationally Headquartered Company category; and Sharesies in the Hi-Tech Start-up Company of the Year category to name but a few.

Callaghan Innovation’s Scale-Up New Zealand, launched this week. This free online platform connects innovative New Zealand businesses, investors, incubators and others, with each other and the world. Add your organisation’s profile on Scale-Up to connect and attract funding. Learn more about Scale-Up here.

Welcome to our newest members Jasper and Quick Loans. Jasper is an IoT platform that automates connectivity management and Quick Loans deliver their customers super quick loans! We’re looking forward to hearing more from you soon.

Lightning Lab GovTech is accepting applications for its July 2019 cohort. If you are in the public sector, don’t miss your chance to be part of this project accelerator.

We want to continue to strengthen the FinTech community so reach out if you think someone should be part of the conversation, or if you have something to say.

James Brown