Another new fintech. Similar niche as Algbra, but I feel like this one is more in tune with what I value more. Also jumping on the cashback bandwagon, but will donate said cashback to a charity of your choice instead of giving it you.
The cards look rather nice though.
I still feel like the market is very crowded now though, and there’s little to no room for anyone else. Yet I still always get a little excited when a new one pops up. All it takes is a solid hook to solidify their place and justify their existence. Not sure Fana have one, but it is just a waiting list right now.
I’m more intrigued about their use of the i.o domain identifier. British Indian Ocean Territory (BIOT). Wonder why they chose that domain instead of .com. I guess though, domain names can be set up from just about anywhere?
BIOT by the way, is not somewhere you can just rock up and set up a finance business. It’s basically a large U.S Airforce Base in the middle of the Indian Ocean that us Brits evicted the islanders from back in the 1950s.
The IO TLD is very common in tech, particularly with a crowded .com market.
Freetrade is .io too, for instance.
It’s a very common and widely used TLD, so it’s much ado about nothing. It’s unrestricted so there’s no residency or territory requirements to own one, so doesn’t imply any affiliation with BIOT whatsoever.
Basically “that was the 50s and the military base is probably more important than the residents right to reside there + they haven’t been there for a few generations now so the privy council writing the order was subjectively a good decision (that I agree with)”
Edit: also, while it is a U.S. military base it is also UK sovereign territory (that we lease to them for several hundred million a year)
There have been efforts recently to undermine our sovereignty by Mauritius and I hope they heed our conflict with Argentina to realise that it’s not worth doing anything rash
TLD talk at least makes up the tech part of fintech
I’ve been digging into the company some more, and whilst this is a new product for them, they’re already an established player in the market, and offer a B2B service.
They already have a wallet app of sorts on the App Store, which I believe ties into a service they sell to business, to let customers donate to causes during the checkout process. There’s a nifty API that can be plugged into all major merchant platforms like Shopify and Squarespace.
Seems interesting, don’t know how successful it is myself, but I have noted seeing similar things at the checkout of some websites, usually pertaining to some kind of carbon offsetting the delivery, or planting trees.
The app is here:
And the B2B stuff here:
And some deets here:
I’m curious if and how any of this will funnel back into this new endeavour, but it’s certainly an interesting business with its own little niche carved out already.
Not sure it’s something I’ll ever actually use. I’m just here for the cards. My mind is open though.
I can appreciate that if what already exists in the world of fintech serves your needs well.
I think for me, the promise of the fintech revolution has yet to be fulfilled. We have a lot of pretty good options, and they’ve improved some aspects of banking, but nothing which exists today is quite what I’ve been hoping for, so I’m always open to new players.
The market is just very crowded and fragmented now, and much of what we’re getting ends up just being much of the same. I think there’s still room for someone new, if they bring a really compelling idea with them. And I still get a bit giddy about that prospect.
Would also be nice if they weren’t all just current/spending account style products. The credit card sector still needs a lot of fintech love and it hasn’t got much, if any.
Insurance needs a little more competition too. We’re getting some, in some niche areas like Napo and Waggel for pets, Revolut also for pets, and Sky Protect for the home, but I’m not sure what else there really is.
And we definitely need more in the investments space. Products like Freetrade. We have plenty of robo investors, but Freetrade is going down the drain and there is really nowhere suitable to move to that can replace it.
Insurance is massively constrained by the comparison sites which essentially determine the size and format of typical consumer options. Offer something different which adds value in different ways and they either don’t appear on those result lists at all or you’re way down the list - either way basically invisible.
(Not complaining btw, the power of these sites for consumers is huge.)
There are new players but however much they play up the importance of their apps and whatnot they are ultimately selling an annual policy with a different set of established features and optional upgrades.
There’s also the issue with all these things that people are less engaged with them than they are a current account, or even savings. I have some cause to log in to mobile banking most days. I log in to credit cards maybe once or twice a month (once to check statement and settle up, once to check all’s good mid-month). Investments I have a look at maybe once a quarter.
Insurance… basically renewal time only unless I have to make a claim.
It’s unfortunate but anything which adds value in ways which will need more of a consumer’s time is ultimately probably not going to sell through as a usable improvement.
They haven’t been attractive propositions honestly. They don’t really do anything or new or make anything better, or try to reinvent the broken aspects, or offer anything competitive (which should be easy with fewer overheads).
The only half decent ones that have come about aren’t even proper credit cards (PayPal Credit, Klarna’s card, Monzo Flex), but I suspect that’s where it’s going.
Globally there’s only really been Apple Card that’s actually approached the credit card from the same revolutionary thinking that went into the fintech approach to bank accounts.
Given the approach Chase took with the current account, I’m hoping to their credit card approach will be similar to how Apple approached the credit card problem.
Email from Fana (probably just to those of us on their subscription list)
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