Moneybox and Plum among Nesta Challenge top winners

By Aisling Finn on Wednesday 14 October 2020

Alternative LendingDigital BankingSavings and Investment

Moneybox, Mojo Mortgages, Plum and Wagestream will all take home £200,000 as a result of winning the Open Banking challenge.

Moneybox and Plum among Nesta Challenge top winners
Image source: Victor Trokoudes/Plum

Nesta has revealed the top four fintech winners for its Open Up 2020 competition. 

Moneybox, Mojo Mortgages, Plum and Wagestream scooped the top prize, winning a £200,000 slice of the £1.5m prize fund as a result.  

The challenge, which created in partnership with the Open Banking Implementation Entity (OBIE), garnered 107 applications, which was whittled down to 15 finalists, all of which have won £50,000 for reaching the late stage. 

As a result of being awarded the top prize, the four winners will receive £200,000, which consists of the £50,000 already awarded from reaching the finals plus an additional £150,000 for scooping the top accolade. 

The challenge, which created in partnership with the Open Banking Implementation Entity (OBIE), garnered 107 applications, which was whittled down to 15 finalists, all of which have won £50,000 for reaching the late stage. 

Lubaina Manji, senior programme manager for Open Up 2020 Challenge, told AltFi: “When we first started the challenge, we really wanted to get as wide a range of fintechs as possible to really show the power of open banking.” 

“We wanted to show just how innovative open banking can be in terms of money management and we had a great range of applicants, but I think we’re still just on the edge of what we can do with open data and money management. This challenge will hopefully be a springboard for other fintechs in the future,” she added. 

Nesta created the challenge to highlight the importance of innovative open banking-enabled solutions to help people across the UK better manage their money. 

Victor Trokoudes, CEO and co-founder of money management app Plum, told AltFi: “Our product is completely built on transactional data and we relied on that data long before open banking existed and still care about it a lot now.” 

“We want to constantly improve the ecosystem and express how we can change the whole open banking domain. It was an incredibly enjoyable process and we’re so glad that we’ve been recognised for our work in open banking,” Trokoudes added. 

When asked what the prize money means for Plum, Trokoudes told AltFi: “It basically means more firepower for us to continually improve the open banking protocol.” 

The other winners include savings and investment app Moneybox, Mojo Mortgages, which uses credit scores and open banking to determine if a customer is ready for a mortgage and salary tracker Wagestream, which allows employees to save directly from their salary, track their wages and bank balance and set smart payment reminders in real-time. 

Since the challenge first opened over a year ago, the number of people using open banking in the UK has doubled, reaching 2 million users just last month.

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