Silicon Wall Street
“That’s not Jamie Dimon,” joked Adam Sodowick, founder and CEO of True Office, as an avatar in his game walked onto the screen. However, Mr. Dimon’s employer, J.P. Morgan, was one of the 12 banks that mentored the FinTech Innovation Lab participants who demoed their products to potential investors and senior executives in the financial industry Wednesday morning at Credit Suisse. (Duh, “FinTech” stands for Financial Tech–get in the game!)
True Office was one of six companies who participated in the three-month long mentoring process, during which these FinTech entrepreneurs presented their products to and received guidance from key executives in the banking industry. True Office is a mobile game that allows companies to conduct more interesting and engaging compliance training.
“This is a very large and deeply unsexy market,” Mr. Sodowick said about compliance training. “It is akin to getting a flu shot.” But TrueOffice makes the training a game, arguably incentivizing users to pay attention and learn from the process. People may even end up reading the company’s policies, where they would inevitably learn that it is, in fact, unethical to lie about your Computer Science degree.
BillGuard is only half-New Yorker–CEOYaron Samidis based in “New York and Tel Aviv.” But the company, which combs your online statements for fraud and frivolous charges, garnered 10,000 sign-ups in a matter of days after launching in May at TechCrunch Disrupt. They discovered fraud on 20 percent of the new users’ bills, and a $6,000 erroneous charge on one wealthy individual’s card.
The only startup to drive up to the stage, GetAround, is the winner of this week’s mega conference.
The two New York start-ups involved in the finals, Sonar and BillGuard, shared the second place runner up slot.
GetAround lets users put their car up for rent, then provides insurance and turns users iphone into the key.
Betabeat’s intrepid Adrianne Jeffries will be hitting the party scene tonight. Let her know where the action is.
“Thousands,” Sonar.me co-founder Brett Martin said via Twitter. “Life is good.” Sonar–a mobile app that shows you how you’re connected to other people in the room–is one of the six finalists for TechCrunch’s Battlefield competition this afternoon, along with fellow New York/Israeli start-up BillGuard, which monitors credit and debit cards for hidden charges, billing errors, forgotten subscriptions and fraud.
There are two finalists from San Francisco (ccLoop and Getaround), one from New York (Sonar), one from New York/Israel (BillGuard), one from just Israel (Doat), and one from New Orleans (InvoiceASAP).