Ammar Akhtar, Yobota’s Co-Founder & CEO
Fast growing FinTech company Yobata seeks to offer a cloud-based operating platform that will drag financial institutions out of the 1970s.
What is Yobota – what problem are you solving?
Yobota is a rapidly growing FinTech company in London.
We have built a fast and flexible cloud-based operating platform for financial services. It allows our clients to create and run innovative financial products faster than other core banking providers.
We believe that without the ability to modernise the manufacturing of banking products, banks will struggle to make any material impact on their customer propositions, competitiveness, cost base, or operational risk.
Many financial institutions are currently operating on complex, legacy technology architectures. Many of them were designed and developed in the 1970s/80s! This not only increases operational cost and risk but also reduces the ability to innovate.
Yobota Platform removes those barriers and allows financial institutions to build better products and improve relationships with their customers.
In 2018, Yobota enabled Chetwood Financial to launch its LiveLend and SmartSave Bank brands.
Chetwood was the only bank to be fully authorised by the UK’s Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) in 2018. Their entire business runs on Yobota Platform.
During the past year, our team has doubled in size to almost 50 people and has won a prestigious Juniper Future Digital Award in the Banking Innovation category. Over 20 countries are represented within our team, with a gender balance of 30%. We treat the diversity of experiences and ideas as one of our core strengths.
We seek to create the most value by focusing on solving complex technical problems and avoiding the buzzwords of the fintech industry. Excellence, security and scalability are at the core of our work ethos.
Your platform provides a set of core modules to build products – what are the main types of products your customer build?
The flexibility of Yobota Platform allows our customers to create all kinds of financial propositions.
The Platform runs in the cloud and supports consumer lending, deposit accounts, and connectivity to the broader financial services ecosystem.
It manages customer onboarding and the whole account lifecycle for our clients. Our APIs allow our clients to customise their end-user experiences.
We currently support an array of lending and deposit products like LiveLend with its Reward Loan proposition, as well as SmartSave Bank. We are currently preparing for launching further propositions to disrupt the UK market.
Products run by our clients are extremely well received by their customers, just have a quick look at hundreds of reviews on Trustpilot!
It would be extremely costly to create those offerings if our clients were using more traditional and less flexible core banking solutions.
Most of your team have a strong maths backgrounds – how did you all come together?
Only a few of us knew each other before this all started – and definitely not that well!
We’ve been very lucky with our recruitment – particularly early on. The team is just fantastic. Quite a few of us don’t have maths backgrounds, but we’ve focussed on finding people with the right technical skills and ambitions so we get the right blend of skills and personalities.
It’s about creating the right culture as much as anything else.
What does ‘Yobota’ mean?
Yobota is a technology company. We were looking for a name which would support a brand independently of industry sector or individuals.
What advice would you give new startups in this space?
- Don’t over-commit.
- Don’t focus on hype terms.
- Don’t build something which can be easily copied.
- Do focus on real challenges that others are not tackling.
We have an array of craft beers and independent music at FinTECHTalents – Give us a great song to listen to while we sip your favourite tipple. Please tell us the drink as well!
There was plenty of debate about the song and drink of choice so we decided to leave this one open 🙂
Meet Yobota – one of our 2019 FinTech Stories companies – at FTT19 this November.