Finastra connects to Contour, offering an enhanced digital trade finance network


Today at Sibos 2022 in AmsterdamFinastra announced a strategic collaboration to integrate its Fusion Trade Innovation software with Contour, the global digital trade finance network, providing banks and corporates with a streamlined end-to-end back-office workflow. Users may access their data through either platform, providing banks with increased efficiency and faster turnaround times when processing Letter of Credit transactions. Ultimately, it opens the door for increased access to trade finance and stronger returns for banks.

Carl Wegner, CEO of Contour commented, “Our partnership with Finastra is an important step forward in breaking down barriers to adoption and increasing access to trade finance. By integrating with Finastra’s Fusion Trade Innovation, financial institutions and corporates will have access to an end-to-end ecosystem of services that will enable them to transact seamlessly and securely.”

Global trade is a multi-trillion-dollar industry that corporates and consumers rely upon daily. To increase efficiencies, many financial institutions have sought a network to support collaborative workflows between trade participants. Finastra and Contour address this need via this new integration, enabling digital adoption while decreasing client costs, reducing reliance on paper transactions, and reducing risk.

Together, Finastra and Contour will further accelerate adoption of digital trade solutions by linking together the two key components of digital trade finance – a deeply integrated core banking platform for internal processes, and an external decentralized network for bank and corporate customer communication. The solution offers full transparency and visibility, reducing the Letter of Credit lifecycle by up to seven days, freeing up working capital for corporates and improving returns for banks.

Isabel Fernandez, EVP, Lending Business Unit at Finastra said, “We are excited to connect with Contour, an innovative leader in this space, in our journey to orchestrate the digital trade ecosystem for our clients. Finastra is focused on making it simple for our financial institution clients to connect seamlessly to the global trade ecosystem so they can maximize business efficiency and develop new business opportunities. We’re pleased that this collaboration enables corporates, particularly small and medium enterprises (SMEs), access to trade and working capital finance where they transact.”


Helen Cook joins Finastra as Chief People Officer


Finastra today announced the appointment of Helen Cook as Chief People Officer. In her role she takes global responsibility for the people organization and advancing the company’s aspiration to be the most inclusive and diverse employer in the Fintech industry. She is particularly passionate about building a curious and well-tooled workforce, supporting employees to develop skills which keep them relevant, engaged and growing.

Helen joins from Natwest Group, where she was a member of the executive team and held the position of Chief Human Resources Officer. She has an incredible wealth of expertise including extensive global exposure in all aspects of people strategy. Her career spans more than 25 years in financial services, including experience at Deutsche Bank and Morgan Stanley.

Based at Finastra’s HQ in Paddington, Helen is a key member of the Finastra Executive Leadership Team, reporting to CEO, Simon Paris. He said, “Helen is passionate about personal development and building skills and capabilities for our employees that enable growth and boost business performance. Her expertise and experience will help us further accelerate Finastra’s people programs that afford opportunities to our employees to expand their horizons.”

Helen added, “I’m excited to be at Finastra and look forward to working more with the passionate and diverse team I have met so far. Finastra’s vision is built on collaboration, and its commitment to become a truly inclusive workplace and enhance the skills of its workforce is inspirational. I’m thrilled to support in growing and developing the company’s global talent.”

Helen graduated from Cambridge University and is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel. In addition to her role at Finastra, she served on the Board of the Financial Services Skills Committee and on the Advisory Board of Ivy House. She also serves as a mentor for the FTSE 100 Mentoring Foundation.


Sia Partners and Finastra name winners of student competition


At a flagship award ceremony, Finastra, Sia Partners, Google Cloud, HSBC Continental Europe, Pépite France and Manaos announced the winners of the Finance and Innovation for Good competition. The initiative invited entrepreneurial students in France to tackle a major challenge around finance for good. Over the past six months, the partners have supported students with their projects from ideation to development.

The overall winners are…

1st place: Sumpler, a solution that facilitates digital receipts at the point of sale, bringing all the data into one place on the banking app.

2nd place: Yam, a digital banking app focused on improving financial inclusion in Africa, including the illiterate population, with some unique digital accessibility innovations.

3rd place: Aphaïa, an equity crowdfunding platform focused on supporting natural capital projects in emerging countries.

The winners of the special project prizes are…

  • Best technical achievement: Eira, an impact investment app focused on generating good financial returns while having a positive impact on the planet.
  • Fastest go-to-market solution: Tetard Capital, a social media platform enabling startups to access funding by connecting them with Gen Z investors.
  • Best social impact innovation: Studlend, a solution which helps US-based students fund their education by connecting them with investors in Europe.
  • Best education innovation: Diwali, a solution which provides financial education for youth, with a focus on Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) investing and green finance.
  • Best socioeconomic impact: Raivel, a platform which connects social economy organizations with banks and other fundraising solutions.
  • Best financial expertise: Greenvest, an ESG investment platform which includes social features such as voting.

The three winners were rewarded with prizes from the partners of 7000€, 5000€ and 3000€, while the special project winners received prizes worth 1000€.

Thomas Rocafull, Partner at SIA Partners said, “The competition provided students with an opportunity to tackle important issues and learn about real-world applications in a business setting. Students play an integral role in shaping our future, and this was apparent with the extremely high quality of finished projects. By partnering with industry experts like Finastra, we gave students the necessary education and tools which resulted in a variety of innovative ideas to increase sustainability and inclusivity in financial services.”

Chirine Ben Zaied, Head of Innovation at Finastra said, “Finastra’s commitment to ESG is underpinned by deep-rooted collaboration, which makes competitions like these crucial. We are so impressed with the creative ideas and insights from all the projects and are extremely proud of the students who took part. A key takeaway is that ESG investing might look like a crowded space, but there is still room for innovation. Additionally, financial inclusion remains a huge problem: financial apps are still inaccessible for many, but fintech can play a big role in tackling this challenge. It was a pleasure to collaborate with the partners and we extend a huge congratulations to all of the winners.”

Throughout the past six months, participants received material resources, including access to Finastra’s open platform for innovation,, and weekly training with nearly a hundred coaches from a variety of industries. Winning projects were selected based on their degree of completion, financial viability and their capacity for disruption and innovation.


Finastra names Hack to the Future 4 winners


Finastra today announced the winners of its Hack to the Future 4 annual global hackathon. Thousands of participants from over 75 countries submitted 230+ projects focused on sustainable and inclusive finance, embedded finance and Banking as a Service (BaaS), and Decentralized Finance (DeFi).

And the winners are…

Best Business Model Innovation: EnFOLL – a marketplace for second-hand solar panels, helping underserved communities get access to renewable energy, and extending the life of the products.

Runners up: Effortless.

Best Fintech submission: PRAAM – Physical Risks Analytics for Asset Managers – an integrated solution to identify, evaluate, manage and report physical risks in investment portfolios. Benefits include value protection, climate risk management and operational efficiency.

This project is a collaboration between IMPACTPlus, a fintech start-up, and a Finastra FusionInvest team. IMACTPlus also won the Best Woman-Led Fintech prize for this submission.

Best Embedded Finance submission: Effortless – Quick and simple Buy Now Pay Later financing. Consumers benefit from a simple way to apply for a loan with optimal terms and payment options, direct from their trusted financial institution.

Runners up: FinFit 2.0 | Wellness Banking and Fundget.

Best ESG submission: Give XRP – a fast, simple, secure app for charitable giving, enabling crypto users to make tax-deductible donations.

Runners up: I-REC tradingMalachiFriends Reference Bureau

Best DeFi submission: Monnex(TM) – Accessing Finance the Confident way(TM) – A revolutionary platform that helps monetize traditional assets like Equities etc. to access real liquid funds or investments into crypto without impacting the integrity of these assets.
Runners up: GrowrPayment Vouchers and PiggiFund.

Best Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DE&I) submission: Growr – an app that encourages financial inclusion by enabling borrowers to receive fair and instant unsecured loans based on self-sovereign identity and DeFi protocols.

Runners up: Trackio and A Green Vest.

Prizes for winners include mentoring and scholarship programs, cash, crypto and internship opportunities.

Chirine BenZaied, Head of Innovation at Finastra said, “We want our hackathons to ignite a movement towards a world of financial sustainability, inclusion, and autonomy. This year’s projects really reflect that goal and we’ve been so excited to see the truly innovative ideas that people all around the world have come up with. We also garnered so much insight from these projects on the technologies and trends the industry is moving towards. We see the market switching from private to public blockchains and looking for ways to embed DeFi into traditional banking services, for example. We also see that there is still significant need to find solutions that support financial inclusion, especially in connection with BaaS. Congratulations to all of the winners and a big thank you to our hundreds of supporting partners, our judges and mentors.”

Finastra also hosted a youth hackathon for 10-18 year olds, encouraging the next generation to help change the world of finance. Hundreds of projects were submitted from around the world, including ideas from India and Moldova.

Youth hackathon winning teams:

MicoBank – a project submitted by a 14-year-old at the Deva Matha Central School – an app to reward children for positive actions with Solana Tokens that can be spent in store, secured by blockchain.

Finlit – A project submitted by two students – a literacy tool to solve financial inclusion challenges for young people.

Runners up: Aiding Peace.

Finastra made its open APIs available via its development platform for the hack.

To see all the project submissions from the hackathon, click here.

To tap into the previously live meet up sessions, which have over 23,000 views, and join the Hack to the Future fintech movement, click here.

#HackToTheFuture #HackingForGood #OpenByDefault


Finastra and Uni Systems collaborate to deliver treasury, payments and risk solutions and services

Finastra has established a new partnership with Uni Systems Information Technology S.M.SA (Uni Systems), an Information and Communications Technology (ICT) systems integration company that specializes in Information Technology landscape transformation in Europe. Uni Systems will be bringing Finastra treasury, risk and payments software – Fusion Treasury, Fusion Risk and Fusion Global PAYplus respectively – to local markets with on-the-ground implementation and support services.

Constantine Serros, Banking and Financial Services Business Unit Director at Uni Systems, said, “We are excited to announce this new business partnership with Finastra. As a global leader in the fintech space, Finastra brings deep expertise coupled with leading solutions in the domains of treasury, payments and risk, which we aim to leverage further with our local footprint, knowledge and technology integration capabilities. We are certain that this partnership will help European financial institutions on their journey to digital transformation – a vision which both Finastra and Uni Systems share.”

The partnership will enable customers to benefit from local expertise and high-level professional services alongside Finastra’s trusted technology solutions. It covers selected customers in multiple geographies in Europe, including GreeceCyprusMaltaRomaniaBulgariaAlbaniaNorth Macedonia, Serbia, Croatia and Slovenia.

Michael Henssler, General Manager, Treasury and Capital Markets and Risk at Finastra said, “Uni Systems is an exciting new member of our Fusion Orbit partner program. We are looking forward to reaching wider markets across Europe with this collaboration. Uni Systems’ specialized consultants are now trained and certified in delivering our solutions, both in the cloud and on-premise, and we are confident they will also deliver quality professional services to our customers.”


Finastra announces winner of its hackathon to tackle bias in financial services


Finastra has announced the winner of its recent hackathon – Hack to the Future 3. Launched to help build an unbiased fintech future, the event saw over 600 participants from more than 50 countries, including Antarctica. With many women-led and diverse teams of students, fintech enthusiasts, financial institution developers and fintech founders all joining the movement, the hackathon is a step towards positive change and redefining the future of finance.

Prizes up for grabs included cash, as well as incubation and internship opportunities from Finastra and some of its 40+ partners.

And the winner is…

  • BloinxA decentralized application using blockchain technology to help build savings communities by operating as a ROSCA administrator through smart contracts. Rotating credit and savings associations (ROSCA) e.g. tandas in Mexico, enable people with lack of financial knowledge and access to credit cards and bank loans to obtain money quickly through a money-pooling fund.

1st Runner up:

  • tinch.An agri-fintech initiative to tackle bias against women in the agriculture sector when it comes to market price, access to agricultural loans and land availability.

2nd Runner up:

  • Qualify – Growth SimplifiedA peer-to-peer lending platform to help low income communities generate credit scores and gain access to formal credit.

Sharon Doherty, Chief People and Places Officer at Finastra said, “We’re on a mission to make financial services more equitable and inclusive, leading by example. During International Women’s Day we shared a point of view that AI bias, if unchecked, could be one of the biggest drivers of inequality in our lifetime. In practical terms, financial solutions such as lending aren’t equally available to people of all genders and cultures.

We also launched a global hackathon to encourage women-led and diverse teams to join our global open innovation community to hack with us, with a particular focus on AI solutions. In fact, nearly 80% of the projects were led by women, which has shone a light on the wealth of female talent in the industry and has been wonderful to see.”

Adam Lieberman, Head of Artificial Intelligence & Machine Learning at Finastra said, “From platforms that help assess algorithmic fairness metrics and synthetic data solutions that create more representative datasets to solutions tackling gender inequalities and the credit invisible, we have seen amazing AI-powered use cases for building an unbiased fintech future and fighting algorithmic bias.”

Finastra made its open development platform –, underpinned by Microsoft Azure – along with more than 180 APIs, SPIs and data sets available for the hackathon.

Check out the submitted projects here or join the conversation on social media using #HackToTheFuture, #HackingForGood and #OPENbydefault

To read recent Finastra-commissioned research from KPMG, centered on algorithmic bias, visit: Open by default | Finastra


Payment Fraud Prevention app from NetGuardians sees success on Finastra’s


Finastra today announced the availability of NetGuardians’ Payment Fraud Prevention app on its open development platform. The app uses artificial intelligence to proactively detect fraudulent payments in real-time and reduce fraud losses. NetGuardians’ operational experience shows that compared with traditional anti-fraud offerings the software reduces the number of false positives by up to 83 percent, resulting in bank staff spending an estimated 93 percent less time investigating suspicious payments.

The NetGuardians app, available via, is pre-integrated with Finastra’s corporate payments, cash management and retail banking solutions: Fusion Global PAYplus, Fusion Payments To Go, Fusion Cash Management, Financial Messaging Services and Fusion Essence. A handful of customers have already selected the pre-integrated app to fight payment fraud more effectively. The app uses AI and machine learning to analyze customer behavior and accurately score payments for fraud. This approach allows banks to reduce their fraud losses while blocking fewer legitimate customer payments than traditional rules-based fraud detection engines.

“All banks must have a robust solution in place to monitor for payment fraud or face fines for missing fraudulent transactions,” said Sagive Greenspan, General Manager of Payments at Finastra. “The integration of NetGuardians’ Payment Fraud Prevention app with Finastra’s payments and cash management solutions through means that our clients can access a highly effective fraud prevention solution and be live in a matter of weeks, compared with alternatives. The NetGuardians approach means that banks benefit from operational savings and reduced losses from fraud, and so too do their customers – from individual retail customers through to multi-national corporations.”

Using the NetGuardians pre-defined AI/ML risk models, banks are able to tackle payment fraud challenges by detecting suspicious payments coming from social engineering techniques or scams, such as invoice redirection, CEO-fraud and others. When a fraudulent transaction is detected, it is temporarily held and an alert is generated in real-time and routed to the relevant stakeholders through risk dashboards and forensics tools for further investigation.

“If transactions are erroneously stopped for fraud, customers can lose time and have a negative banking experience. It is therefore vitally important for banks to implement a fraud solution that reduces the risk of false positives and removes the burden of manual work required to handle suspicious transactions,” explained Joël Winteregg, CEO at NetGuardians. “Finastra is a valued partner and we’re thrilled that our Payment Fraud Prevention app is seeing growth on the platform. We are impressed to see that in a very short period of time, four Finastra customers have already selected our app. The integration makes it incredibly easy for banks that are already using Finastra’s payments, cash management and retail banking solutions to deploy our app and start benefitting from fraud protection – with a reduced implementation cost and fast time to market.”