Moven Preps PayPal Integration, Global Growth

  • Philip Ryan
  • May 15, 2015
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© Can Stock Photo Inc. / trgowanlockMoven is expanding to new geographies and increasing customers’ money movement options with a PayPal integration.

Financial services these days are built on APIs, integrations, and partnerships. Which systems can you connect to make your customer’s life easier? Which partners can help you fulfill your mission of building the best product or service?

Going your own way, except for the largest of banks, is simply not an option.

Malauzai, the mobile software developer from Austin, Texas, took a slot at Finovate to discuss its Apple Watch apps — five of approximately 42 Apple Watch banking apps are from community banks running Malauzai software — and to talk partnerships. It set a Finovate record by having seven people on stage for one presentation, with representatives from Mitek, Allied Payment Network, and elsewhere.

Moven, the mobile bank account from Brett King and company, was one of many presenters to discuss integrations as a way to increase functionality for its customers. The New York-based startup plans to integrate with PayPal soon to give customers another option for moving money, CEO Brett King told Bank Innovation. No specific date was set, but it could take place alongside Moven’s major app update, planned for July.

Moven is also making deals to expand into new geographies, such as Taiwan and the Middle East, including Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. A partnership with Accenture, announced this week, will help power this global growth, as well as help Moven develop biometric authentication and refine its mobile account opening and marketing. Moven is already live with Westpac New Zealand, and parts of the Moven platform are soon to launch with TD Bank in Canada, as was announced in December 2014.

With the July update, Moven will offer point-of-sale credit for direct deposit customers and an intelligent savings function that will make recommendations to users about putting money away in a vault. There is also a wish list, which the company took pains to differentiate from savings goals — something King describes as a broken model. He is referring to goals such as “Save $1,000 this month.” Customers feel they are depriving themselves, and then they get into a cycle of deprivation and rewards. In other words, “once you reach your goal, you spend the money,” King said at Finovate in San Jose, Calif., this week.

“The idea is to gamify spending and saving,” King said. Part of gamification for Moven is keeping millennials interested in their finances, and a sure way to turn them off is to ask them to create budgets or tag transactions. Moven, therefore, does these things automatically. So did Level Money, acquired by Capital One in January.

“Six to seven months in, for customers using Moven every day,” financial behavior is tangibly improved, King said.

In the U.S., Moven is maintaining its independence and focusing on getting customers, according to King. But in the world outside, where banking systems are often considerably more advanced, Moven is actively pursuing and winning bank partnerships. This model stands in stark contrast to that pursued by fellow neobank Simple. (King’s conversation with Simple CEO Josh Reich last week on King’s radio show, Breaking Banks, is a must-listen for those interested in next-generation banks.) Simple was acquired by BBVA for $117 million in early 2014 and hasn’t had the smoothest ride since.

Moven’s growing web of partnerships may mean the Simple path is closed for them, but on the other hand, keeping clear of U.S. partnerships may mean something like this is expected with an American bank.

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Philip Ryan is Senior Editor of Bank Innovation and Senior Director of INV Fintech. He began covering financial services in 2012 and has more than 15 years' experience in online journalism, which makes him quite old. He can be reached at pryan@royalmedia.com.

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