Category Archives: Fundraising and Investing

FFCON20 fintech cage match: Financial planning vs literacy

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NCFA Canada | By Samuel He | July 11, 2020

FFCON20 Fintech Draft Finally vs Numoola - FFCON20 fintech cage match: Financial planning vs literacy

Image Credit: Inspiring / Shutterstock

 


Dealing with finances is time-consuming and difficult, especially when it involves contradictory goals, like paying off debt while investing for the future. Unfortunately, financial literacy is not emphasized in today’s educational curriculum.

Reports show that only 16% of Millennials qualified as “financially literate,” and over 75% of Canadians stated that they were not confident that they will ever achieve their financial goals.

Several companies have taken initiatives to offer assistance in this field. One company is Finally, a free online financial planning stimulator will provide guidance to users about their financial goals. Another is NuMoola, a family-focused consumer banking app that helps children develop good money habits using real money and gamified education.

Finally offers a DIY Financial Planning Simulator that helps users customize a tailor-made plan to best fit their needs. The simulator uses multiple financial algorithms and machine learning to make the process straightforward and efficient, creating a plan for the user in as little as 20 minutes.

A basic financial plan can be created for free, with the user having the option to subscribe for additional value-added services. Some of these services include automated money movement, access to a financial planning advisor, and cashback programs for assistance.

NuMoola approaches the problem from a different direction. The NuMoola app strives to make learning about financial literacy a less daunting endeavour. And their focus is on getting children to develop good lifelong financial habits early. The app features family-focused banking that allows children to learn the value of money and gamified educational tasks focusing on all aspects of banking and money management. Achieving financial awareness at this early stage prepares children to be financially responsible and tackle financial hurdles in the future.

 

You can see Finally and NuMoola pitch at FFCON20 DIGITAL’s Fintech Draft Competition!

Get a ticket, tune in and vote to show your support for Finally and NuMoola (and others, see below)

Check out their profiles and their competition at the FFCON20 RISE page.

 

 

FFCON20 Fintech Draft - FFCON20 fintech cage match: Financial planning vs literacy

NCFA Jan 2018 resize - FFCON20 fintech cage match: Financial planning vs literacy The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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Montreal’s Flinks raises $16 million

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Montreal in Technology | Steve La Barbera | Jul 6, 2020

Flinks celebration - FFCON20 fintech cage match: Financial planning vs literacyPerhaps Montreal’s best known fintech, Flinks has today announced another $16 million flowing into its coffers. That includes just over $5 million in debt, and and $11 million series A round led by National Bank’s corporate venture capital arm, NAventures, which was also the source of the loan. The round also included participation from Intact Ventures, Luge Capital and Panache Ventures.

“The digitization of financial services is more than just a trend. It’s a profound reshaping of the industry, driven by rapidly changing consumer needs in a global context. Flinks is uniquely positioned to help businesses accelerate their digital transformation,” said Flinks co-founder and CEO, Yves-Gabriel Leboeuf.

“This investment from our strategic partners allows us to jumpstart the next phase of our mission: consolidating our position in our home market and building new innovative data products that will allow us to tackle global demand.”

The funding will be used to help Flinks bring its services to new verticals, such as wealth management, and continue its geographic expansion to establish itself as a market leader in those new geos. By developing and leveraging a powerful, secure data exchange network, Flinks plans to continue to improve the experience of all of its stakeholders.

See:  In the Future, Home Will be Wherever Consumers Choose to be

“NAventures firmly believes in democratizing innovation. That is why we are proud to support Flinks as they continue to establish their vital role in fintech ecosystems, both in Canada and abroad,” said Philippe Daoust, Managing Director of Venture Capital at NAventures.

“We see great alignment between Flinks’ mission and our own focus on helping our clients manage their finances by providing them with innovative and reliable digital solutions.”

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NCFA Jan 2018 resize - FFCON20 fintech cage match: Financial planning vs literacy The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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Refusal to embrace open banking puts Canada behind yet another curve

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Financial Post | Kevin Carmichael | July 10, 2020

Adam Feleskey Portag3 ventures - FFCON20 fintech cage match: Financial planning vs literacyAdam Felesky, chief executive of Portag3 Ventures LP, the venture-capital arm of Power Corp. of Canada, was primed to put his home country on the leading edge of finance at the end of last year.

“We’re on a mission to build global champions from a Canadian base,” Felesky told the TechCrunch website in early December when Portag3 announced it had raised $427 million for a new fund aimed at digital finance startups.

The “majority” of that money remains unallocated, Felesky told me this week, but that could soon change. The social distancing demanded by COVID-19 has sped up the shift to a digital economy, a boon for outfits such as Toronto-based Portag3, which specializes in identifying startups that have plans to disrupt finance. The pandemic caused a terrible recession, but anyone focused on digital technology barely noticed.

“We’ve been playing offence,” Felesky said during a Zoom interview organized by the National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association. “We’re excited about the environment right now. There are lots of opportunities.”

Without access to data, digital upstarts have little chance of stealing market share from legacy institutions, even if they offer a better service

Unfortunately for Canada, which, like most countries, will need all the investment it can get to recover from the coronavirus crisis, most of the opportunities that Felesky sees are elsewhere.

See:  Open banking would help the recovery

That’s because we Canadians — and, by extension, our elected representatives — refuse to get excited about open banking, the industry term for a regulatory regime that grants control of financial information to clients rather than the financial institutions that serve them.

Without access to data, digital upstarts have little chance of stealing market share from legacy institutions, even if they offer a better service. The United Kingdom, European Union and Australia are among the jurisdictions that have adopted open banking over the past couple of years and will benefit from a first-mover advantage as a result.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government, meanwhile, keeps postponing a decision on whether it intends to follow, which probably suits the established banking oligopoly just fine.

Around the time Portag3 closed its latest round of fundraising, an expert committee appointed by Finance Minister Bill Morneau was finishing up a report that was relatively enthusiastic about open banking. In January, Morneau released the review and announced additional consultations would be held in the spring. Those meetings were postponed until autumn because of the pandemic, meaning regulatory clarity is at least a year away, if not longer.

As a result, Portag3’s money probably will end up in places where governments have decided to embrace the future, rather than serve the interests of legacy interests by dallying. Canada will have exposure to the digital shift in financial services thanks to the ownership stakes Portag3 and others take in various international firms. But the actual champions of global finance will continue to come from elsewhere, and their clients in Europe and Asia will be first to enjoy the benefits of better service.

See:  NCFA Open Letter: Government should collaborate with Fintechs

“Unfortunately, we’re spending more time outside of Canada than inside of Canada because of some of these (regulatory) headwinds,” Felesky said. “It’s difficult to make some of these investments believing something may occur. We just don’t have any capital in businesses that are dependent on open banking.”

A new generation of finance entrepreneurs think decades of coddling have left the big banks too risk averse to be successful in the digital economy

There is a strongly held view among fintech advocates that the big banks are using their influence to delay regulatory changes that would entice new challengers for as long as they can.

Given the banking oligopoly’s outsized role in the federal government’s COVID-19 rescue, it’s fair to wonder if it will have even greater sway over Ottawa once the emergency is over. The argument that the guarantee of financial stability justifies protecting the largest institutions from competition will be strengthened by Bay Street’s ability to keep many mortgage holders and smaller companies afloat during the crisis.

See:  NCFA Announces Updated Virtual Interactive Programme for FFCON20 DIGITAL, the 6th annual Fintech and Financing Conference

There will need to be more urgency in Ottawa, too, and some of that will have to be directed by us, so call your member of Parliament. The opportunity cost of letting the banks and their regulators sort out open banking is too great.

Continue to the full article --> here

 


NCFA Jan 2018 resize - FFCON20 fintech cage match: Financial planning vs literacy The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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FFCON20 Week 1: Scaling Fintech Funding, Innovation and Competition – July 9th Agenda Now Posted

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NCFA | Team FFCON20 | Jul 6, 2020

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MoneyMates: Slaying predatory lending

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NCFA | Samuel He, Market Research Analyst Intern | July 3, 2020

P2P lending - FFCON20 fintech cage match: Financial planning vs literacy

Source: P2PMarketData

Today, millions live paycheck to paycheck, struggling to get by financially. This lack of resources and a poor credit score makes getting a loan difficult. And the options that are available, make the problem worse with high rates and aggressive rules.

Traditional payday loans use aggressive deadlines and lump sum payments that often results in the customer spiraling into a debt trap.

The challenge for the customer is accessibility to resources and the opportunity to improve their credit capacity for future, cheaper loans.

Founded by Samir Issa, MoneyMates is an alternative lender that prioritizes the welfare of its customers by offering expert guidance not just on getting the loan, but how to improve their credit situation.

See:  Shopify expands capital lending program to help Canadian merchants weather COVID-19

They do this by offering customers an extended repayment period of up to two months rather than the typical two weeks. In the event of a missed payment, MoneyMates will work with the customer on a solution to avoid additional fees and penalties.

MoneyMates has also added a unique savings feature to help borrowers accrue savings. Customers are given the option to choose a savings amount when borrowing, which is set aside and deposited into the account along with any bonuses once the loan has been paid off. The approach helps borrowers understand both what they are borrowing and what savings can be accrued to help them avoid future emergency loans.

The objective is to provide vulnerable borrowers with better financial health, expanding access to financial services and a sense of empowerment.

MoneyMates - FFCON20 fintech cage match: Financial planning vs literacy

Interested in seeing MoneyMates pitch at FFCON20 DIGITAL's  Fintech Draft Competition?

Inspired by sports league drafts, the inaugural FFCON20 annual Fintech Draft is designed to identify and feature emerging and high growth fintech startups and scaleups. Qualifying Fintech Draft participants will be profiled online and reviewed by expert fintech scouts, and will compete in one of two (2) Fintech Draft competitions.  Draft finalists compete at FFCON20 DIGITAL: RISE between Jul 9 – Aug 27, 2020 for exposure and prizes including promotion to investors, media, and partners and a 1 year industry partnership with NCFA.

Be sure to give them a vote and show your support! Check out their profile and competition here: https://fintechandfunding.com/shortlisted-draft-companies/

 


NCFA Jan 2018 resize - FFCON20 fintech cage match: Financial planning vs literacy The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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FundThrough Commits $10 Million to Help SMBs Overcome Shutdown

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FundThrough Blog | Jun 26, 2020

small businesses are the backbone - FFCON20 fintech cage match: Financial planning vs literacyTORONTO – FundThrough, North America’s leading invoice funding solution for small businesses, has announced it will provide $10 million in free funding for clients as the economy reopens from COVID-19. The company announced it as part of a broader initiative to help small businesses, who invoice their customers and wait to for invoice payments, get back on their feet in the wake of the COVID-19 economic shutdown and has expedited this capital commitment for SMBs looking for a practical source of funding.

The Toronto-based Fintech company will provide working capital to small businesses in exchange for outstanding customer invoices, based on the creditworthiness of the payor. Clients that sell goods and services to larger customers and need working capital quickly are encouraged to apply.

“We are proud to announce this initiative to help kick start the North American economy and ensure that companies get paid immediately for the work they have completed and the products they have delivered,” said FundThrough Co-Founder and CEO Steven Uster. “Large companies often stretch out their payment terms for their suppliers. We are levelling the playing field so that suppliers no longer have to act as a bank for their customers.”

FundThrough will provide the funding through its next-generation invoice factoring platform, Velocity. Once onboard, clients can upload their outstanding customer invoices, update their account and payor information, and quickly receive their funding request. The quick influx of cash could provide companies with the working capital they need during a period of uncertainty. Factoring also provides a unique alternative to traditional funding methods.

See: 

“One of the biggest challenges for small businesses will be to get paid for the first projects that they complete as the economy reopens,” said Deepak Ramachandran, FundThrough co-founder and Chief Technology Officer. “We’ve already seen large companies extend their payment terms from 30 or 60 days to 90-120 days. So, if a supplier completes an order and has to wait four months to get paid, it may feel a lot like they are shut down once again. FundThrough can get them their money within 48 hours of invoicing, so they can keep working on the next order.”

Small businesses seeking funding for their outstanding invoices can visit FundThrough.com for more information.

About FundThrough

FundThrough is a leading player in the fintech small business working capital space. Its tech-enabled invoice funding platform has re-imagined invoicing so that businesses who sell to larger customers can get paid instantly. FundThrough enables business owners to eliminate “the wait” associated with payment terms. For more information, go to www.fundthrough.com.

 

View: original release

 


NCFA Jan 2018 resize - FFCON20 fintech cage match: Financial planning vs literacy The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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Mastercard to Acquire Finicity to Advance Open Banking Strategy

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Finicity | Release | Jun 23, 2020

Finicity - FFCON20 fintech cage match: Financial planning vs literacy

Strengthens existing open banking capabilities with Finicity’s proven technology and talent

Enhances collaboration and co-creation efforts with fintechs and financial institutions

Furthers commitment to consumer-centric data protection and practices

PURCHASE, N.Y. – June 23, 2020 – Mastercard (NYSE: MA) today announced it has entered into an agreement to acquire Finicity, a leading North American provider of real-time access to financial data and insights. The purchase price is US$825 million, and Finicity’s existing shareholders have the potential for an earn-out of up to an additional $160 million, if performance targets are met.

The addition of Finicity’s complementary technology and teams strengthens the existing Mastercard open banking platform to enable and safeguard a greater choice of financial services, reinforcing the company’s long-standing partnerships with and commitment to financial institutions and fintechs across the globe.

See:  Rebank Podcast: How to Build a Profitable Digital Bank with Tinkoff

Open banking gives people and businesses more control over their financial data. This includes determining how and where third parties – such as fintechs or other banks – can access that information to provide new services like money management programs or initiate payments on their behalf.

Mastercard has increasingly invested in this space over several years, including the 2019 launch of a set of comprehensive open banking solutions in Europe. The combination of these efforts with the Finicity technology powering platforms such as Quicken Loans Rocket Mortgage and Experian Boost has the potential to shape the next generation of open banking services.

“Open banking is a growing global trend and a strategically important space for us. With the addition of Finicity, we expect to not only advance our open banking strategy, but enhance how we support and accelerate today’s digital economy across several markets,” said Michael Miebach, president of Mastercard.

“Finicity has a proven business, built on partnerships with thousands of banks and fintechs, similar to us. Finicity also shares our commitment to consumer-centric data practices, ensuring consumers have a say in how and where their information should be used. It’s through the use of next generation open banking APIs and clear consumer approvals that this financial information can deliver streamlined loan and mortgage processes, rapid account-based payment initiation and personal financial management solutions.”

“Since our founding, Nick Thomas and I have focused on developing industry-leading technology and building an organization that empowers consumers and organizations to better understand, manage and use their financial data to improve their financial lives,” said Steve Smith, chief executive officer and co-founder of Finicity. “Enabling people to access and control their data, while ensuring best practices to protect that data, will continue to drive tremendous innovation that increases financial literacy, inclusion and health.  This partnership with Mastercard helps us accelerate this mission globally.”

 

Strategic Rationale 

Advances Mastercard as a Strong Open Banking Partner for Fintechs, Financial Institutions. Finicity’s technology and dedicated employees will enhance Mastercard’s existing open banking solutions by enabling them to expand in North America and other key geographies. Today, Mastercard open banking services in Europe feature connections to more than 1,800 financial institutions. With a direct connection to the North American banking, lending and wealth management ecosystem, Mastercard will extend Finicity’s reach to be a one-stop partner for any consumer, bank, merchant, fintech or government’s data, payment and open banking needs.

See: 

Strengthens Capabilities and Offerings to Consumers and Businesses. Following the completion of the transaction, Mastercard’s existing technology and expertise combined with Finicity’s new analytics platforms, will help streamline the credit decisioning process for consumers and small businesses. Additionally, the integration of Finicity’s account owner verification tools to Mastercard’s New Payment Platform capabilities will deliver an improved ACH and real-time payments experience to consumers, merchants and businesses.

Enhances Commitment to Responsible Data Practices. Finicity shares Mastercard’s commitment to safe and secure data practices centered around the individual. Finicity’s co-founders have played a critical role in the advancing the discussion of best practices across multiple industries. Finicity has a strong commitment to deliver best-in-class data management practices by partnering with banks and their customers to ensure secure connectivity is established.

“Bank of America is a strong believer in giving people control over their financial information and the ability to share it securely,” said Mark Monaco, head of Enterprise Payments at Bank of America.  “We’ve worked with both Finicity and Mastercard, as well as industry groups such as Financial Data Exchange, to accelerate the adoption of the highest standards of privacy and security for data sharing, and to eliminate the retention and storage of individuals’ financial details by third parties. We look forward to continuing our work with Finicity and Mastercard to further improve the customer experience.”

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NCFA Jan 2018 resize - FFCON20 fintech cage match: Financial planning vs literacy The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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