The winners of the inaugural Australian Fintech Awards (Finnies) were announced on May 24, and it has been a blazing success for agritech and small business fintech.
Retail provider Afterpay took out the FinTech Organisation of the Year for its 'buy now, receive now, pay later' approach to purchasing, which the judges said was a 'strong customer centric solution' that allows customers to pay in four fortnightly instalments.
AgriDigital co-founder and CEO Emma Weston took out the top Female FinTech Leader of the Year Award - the first time the award has been included in the Finnies. She also won the Emerging FinTech Leader of the Year award.
AgriDigital is a financing solution for the agriculture supply chain, and uses blockchain as part of its business. Judges commented that Weston shows “a strong combination of business and technical leadership... she showcases resilience, creativity, and tenacity in a new business undertaking.”
Unsecured loan provider Prospa co-CEOs Greg Moshal and Beau Bretoli claimed Male FinTech Leader of the Year Award. In five years the company has more than 10,000 customers and $350 million in loans to SMBs.
“Prospa comes with a fresh and energetic attitude, sourced straight from its founders. Very clear vision and target-focused, the results speak for themselves," the judges said.
Super investment provider Spaceship won Emerging Fintech Organisation of the Year. Judges commented that “Spaceship's willingness to invest in growth assets that traditional super funds are not comfortable with provides a significant competitive difference, as does its offer of transparency, and low fees. Traditional superannuation communicated poorly with their members, creating disengagement."
Simon Cant, FinTech Australia's president, says the awards will create awareness of FinTech talent.
“Tonight’s awards showcase the excellence in Australia’s fintech industry and will help promote this industry to a broader audience, assisting it to grow in a highly globally-competitive environment,” he said.
“The awards also amplify the work of our fintech industry members who are taking on and solving key industry challenges, such as increasing leadership diversity and building partnerships with larger financial institutions," he added.
Online community voting has also opened for the Global FinTech Leader of the Year Award. Candidates include Imran Gulamhuseinwala, Blythe Masters and Jack Ma. Voting closes tonight at 10pm AEST.
The full awards are as follows: