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The strategy behind the growth of a fintech

At the end of the second quarter of 2019, the next capital increase is to be completed. Thomas Niss, founder of Own Standortfonds Austria, wants to lure fresh money with his FinTech. According to Niss they want to raise 8 million euros. From 1 April, negotiations with potential investors are expected to hit the home stretch. Among the candidates are various financial investors. These include, among others, venture capital funds from other European countries as well as from the USA.

With the new money in the jargon Series A financing called the growth of the enterprise is to be fired particularly in the neighboring Germany. Niss said they want to be broader. In other words, the fund wants to reach English speaking Europe with its financial product. That’s about 90 million people, including Niss, primarily investors in Northern Europe and the Baltic States.

Niss is the owner and founder of the fund along with Martin Foussek. The Own Location Fund is managed by FinTech Coown Austria.

Company Founder, Former BCG Consultant and Financial Expert Thomas Niss owns 90 percent of Own’s shares. The Ortner Group started in the previous year and holds 10 percent of the shares after a rumored million-dollar injection.

Of course, this FinTech, which was founded in 2017, is expected to significantly increase its customer base. According to Neo Managing Director Markus Fallenböck, since the foundation, already 4,000 people have invested a total of around 14 million euros in the equity funds launched by Own. The former media manager only moved from the publishing group News in Vienna to the FinTech startup at the beginning of the year. In total, his new company has just one dozen employees.

The special kick

Own attracts investors with simple structures. The customer can already invest with a minimum monthly deposit of 30 euros. In addition, the company advertises with low fees of just under one percent. There are no subscription or opening fees. The total cost is less than one percent.

Own investors can use the app to manage their investment via smartphone and to determine, steer, suspend or sell their investment again without observing a notice period. With graphics and figures, the performance of the fund is displayed almost in real time. The customer also receives the latest stock market information. For example on the companies in which Own has invested. Technology development app, server, security takes place in house, as well as the editors of the stock exchange news.

FinTech has launched just one single fund, which is invested in 250 listed companies in eleven industries. The Own Austria Site Fund is made up of Austrian ATX companies weighting 40 percent, DAX companies and European companies weighting around 17 percent each and shares of US companies in various industries. Google’s alphabet, Amazon or Apple are also among the companies in which the equity fund is invested, but they are weighted lower. Since its foundation, FinTech has been able to do a total of.

The quizzes for the land of investors

The customers are highly internet affine and on average 34 years. According to the new Coown CEO Fallenböck they want to revive the topic of equities and entrepreneurship in Austria.

Via App, Messenger and a just started Quizz known as BizzQuiz the user community is to be extended. As well as a new co-managing director, Own Austria wants to accelerate the pace of expansion and thus increase the number of customers.

The BizzQuiz will be launched at 8pm in the evening at preannounced times. Via messenger a multiple choice quiz is played out to the customers who have previously registered for it. This is to win new customers. The winner of the 10-question quiz, which is thematically oriented to economic topics and played in a given period of time, which is about three minutes, offers fund shares worth up to € 500. If you do not answer a question or answer it incorrectly, you can use a joker, which you have received through the mediation of a user.

And subsequently, new financiers will be added this year through the next round of financing, as Markus Fallenböck confirms. Fallenböck has moved from the publishing group News to the Viennese startup and should further accelerate the marketing.

Everything mobile

At the beginning of the year, Own also opened the app for users who are not yet investors in the Own fund. The app provides content about the 250 companies in which the equity fund is invested.

According to Fallenböck, since the beginning of January, 4,000 investors have been added to the 4,000 investors who have downloaded the app to their smartphone and have been using it ever since. The number of users is to be tripled to 30,000 in the next three months. Similarly, the number of accesses from the current 70,000 to more than 300,000 should be increased significantly.

Fallenböck explained that, the app is to serve as an anchor so as to turn the users into investors.

And the risk? By investing in the 250 listed companies in the 11 sectors, the risk is to be broadly diversified. “But we tell the customer, he should only invest money that he does not need at the moment,” says Fallenböck. And, of course, the customer must be aware that it may lose its investment as a result of fluctuating stock price.

As last happened in October 2018, when stock prices had lost a massive amount of value by the end of the year and the performance of the fund was also worse. Since the beginning of the year, however, things have been going the other way again. Stock prices of the companies represented in the fund have picked up again. The development of the fund can be called up via the app in real time.

The Strategy

A comparison to the high flyers of the FinTech industry N26 and Revolt Fallenböck does not shy away. However, he emphasizes that Own, in contrast to the two, will pursue the chosen niche strategy.

“We are the platform for fund products. And that will continue to be so. An expansion of the product range should not be possible without a banking license. Currently Own Austria is obliged to report to the Financial Market Authority (FMA). As a platform company, the start-up does not need to solve a banking license, which is quite expensive. The vision is an Own Europe,” says Fallenböck.

A platform that operates trans nationally in the EU area. According to the founder, Thomas Niss.


Also published on Medium.

Published inFintech

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