Fintech Impact


Portag3 Ventures with Ben Harrison (Partner) | E36

Ep. 36

During this 36th episode of the Fintech Impact podcast, Jason Pereira interviews Ben Harrison, Partner and Head of LP

Engagement & Partnerships at Portag3 Ventures, one of the top venture capital firms in the

fintech space.

● 00:56 – Portag3 is made of two funds that handle areas like blockchain and A.I..

● 02:19 – Ben has just over 16 years with Great West Life.

● 05:08 – Financial customers want the same user experience that they are familiar with from Amazon and Google.

● 10:28 – In order to have a better understanding of the change that is happening, invest in and partner with those that are doing it.

● 13:31 – The cost of starting a start-up as dropped dramatically during the last decade.

● 16:12 – When start-ups get absorbed by huge institutions, the corporate culture should remain the same to maintain those talented developers.

● 20:30 – Success in Asia from an insurance company standpoint success is measured in selling 100s of 1000s or millions of insurance policies in a year.

● 23:22 – When there are major investments involved, there are broad power shifts.

● 24:40 – What is the platform that is going to streamline blockchain.

● 27:00 – Portag3 Ventures invests in great, talented people in the founders and high comfort with the technology, performance, and scalability.

● 29:53 – Ben Harrison is most excited about seeing the interest in the bigger companies being willing to have partnerships.

3 Key Points:

1. Portag3 Ventures’s first fund was made up of Power Financial, Great West Life, andIGM.

2. Approximately, 10 years ago the average price of launching a start-up company was $5 million, now it is about $500,000 dollars.

3. To adapt to change and stay ahead of the curve—you have to be willing to partner up.

Tweetable Quotes:

- “Portag3 is an early stage venture fund.” – Ben Harrison.

- “Customers just expect now the types of experiences that they receive from Google or Amazon or Netflix.” – Ben Harrison.

- “So it’s not so much that fintech is going to topple the business world, it’s now questions about these big platform tech players.” – Ben Harrison.

Resources Mentioned:

● LinkedIn – Jason Pereira’s LinkedIn

● Facebook – Jason Pereira’s Facebook

● Woodgate Financial – Website for Woodgate Financial

● Ben Harrison – LinkedIn for Ben Harrison

● Portag3 Ventures – Website for Portag3 Ventures

More Episodes


Open Banking 4: Global Contrast with Edward Berks, Davyde Wachell, & Chad Davis | E162

Ep. 162
In this 162nd episode of Fintech Impact, Jason Pereira, award-winning financial planner, university lecturer, writer, and host interviews Edward Berks (Xero), Davyde Wachell (Responsive AI), and Chad Davis (LiveCA) on what works and doesn’t work with Open Banking in different countries around the world!Episode Highlights:1:03 – Everyone introduces themselves and their companies.4:06 – What market has done the best job of moving Open Banking forward?8:44 – Where have we seen the biggest struggles throughout the world?13:40 – David explains how North American banks are actively slowing down the process of Open Banking.17:00 – Everyone weighs in on TD’s current lawsuit against Plaid.21:05 – What is the correlation between market competition and outcomes?27:00 – Jason compares the American financial psyche with the Candian one.28:03 – Everyone discusses streamlining access to capital during COVID in Canada.33:30 – Why does the Canadian government continue to push timelines for Open Banking?37:30 – David discusses the opportunity that exists for financial regulators in Canada.39:30 – What is the timeline in Canada for the next thing that financial institutions should be excited about?41:10 – What would each guest change in the world of Open Banking?3 Key PointsThough Canada has PIPEDA, which guarantees people’s right to their data upon request, the banks have made the process a nightmare for the requester.Canadian banks colluded to ban Apple Pay in Canada in a manner that would be considered illegal in other countries.In Canada, Fintech was completely boxed out of the situation of providing relief during COVID, something it could have done much quicker than the major banks.Tweetable Quotes:“Australia has always been a little further along on the accounting and banking spectrum than Canadians and Americans and the UK. I think they’re going to be pretty well positioned to roll this out right as well.” – Chad Davis“Every time we give a password, we’re violating our fraud protection. That’s just a nonsensical stance to take.” – Jason Pereira“Whether or not you’re China or whether or not you’re a Canadian bank, the more you try to stop the flow of information, the more that information is going to flow.” – David Watchel“I think that there’s a herd instinct in well–established banks in most jurisdictions, and once you get that first domino toppling, it’s difficult for the other banks not to follow.” – Edward BurkeResources Mentioned:Facebook – Jason Pereira’s FacebookLinkedIn – Jason Pereira’s – Website for Fintech – Sign up for Jason Pereira’s – Website for Woodgate – Website for – Website for - Website for Responsive AI

Open Banking 3: Canada with Ben Harrison, Andrew Moor, & Daniel Eberhard | E161

Ep. 161
In this 161st episode of Fintech Impact, Jason Pereira, award-winning financial planner, university lecturer, writer, and host is joined by Ben Harrison (Portag3 Ventures), Andrew Moor (EQ Bank), & Daniel Eberhard (KOHO) for part 3 of his series on Open Banking. This one is all about Canada!Episode Highlights:0:57 – Andrew Moor introduces himself and EQ Bank.2:25 – Ben Harrison gives insight into his role at Portag3.3:58 – Daniel Eberhard introduces himself and CoHo’s mission.6:15 – What is the current state of Open Banking in Canada?9:00 – How does this round of conversations surrounding Open Banking differ from conversations in the past?12:49 – Jason discusses the unprecedented urgency around regulatory reforms in Canada right now.14:19 – What kind of consideration is Canada’s advisory committee taking from markets that have already implemented Open Banking?18:12 – Everyone discusses the lack of data rights for consumers in Canada.23:28 – What does Open Banking mean to the future of KOHO, EQ Bank, and Portag3?30:39 – Who will be making the decisions for consumers’ financial lives with Open Banking?32:39 – Is there a concern about focusing on solely quantitative data and ignoring qualitative data surrounding consumer lives?38:30 – Jason explains how quality goes down every time a company adds a new product.40:48 – What is the one thing that everyone needs to know about why we need Open Banking?3 Key PointsCurrently, Canada’s 5 largest banks have the largest revenue to population ratio in the world, largely due to a sheer lack of competition.Unlike past conversations around Open Banking with the Canadian Minister of Finance, this time around there is an actual proposal.The fundamental push for Open Banking has been fueled by a lack of engagement by consumers. The hope is that Open Banking makes financial transactions and banking transparent and simple.Tweetable Quotes:“This is a way to unplug the power of some very large institutions and deliver more value to the entrepreneurial community...everyone should be aligned on this kind of thing.” – Andrew Moor“The message that I take from the advisory committee’s work is they strongly believe that government absolutely needs to play an important role in designing the framework from a legislative standpoint.” – Ben Harrison“The real gating factor is actually the approval and I think that’s always been the biggest risk to this process. And now we have a framework through which to shape the discussion.” – Daniel Eberhard“The general how we’re going to do this hasn’t necessarily been fully addressed yet. It’s more so we need to do this.” – Jason Pereira“It is really hard to be good at tons of things.” – Jason PereiraResources Mentioned:Facebook – Jason Pereira’s FacebookLinkedIn – Jason Pereira’s – Website for Fintech – Sign up for Jason Pereira’s – Website for Woodgate FinancialPortag3 Ventures – Website for Portag3 VenturesEQ Bank – Website for EQ BankKOHO – Website for KOHO Financial

Open Banking 2: U.S. with Frederik Mennes, John Pitts, & Yoseph West | E160

Ep. 160
In this 160th episode of Fintech Impact, Jason Pereira, award-winning financial planner, university lecturer, writer, and host interviews Frederik Mennes (OneSpan), John Pitts (Plaid), & Yoseph West (Relay) to discuss the state of Open Banking in the United States!Episode Highlights:● 0:50 – John Pitts introduces himself and Plaid.● 1:32 – Yoseph West introduces himself and Relay.● 2:08 – Frederik Mennes introduces himself and OneSpan.● 3:22 – What is the state of affairs in the US for Open Banking right now?● 5:52 – Frederik addresses the fundamental differences between the US and Europe in their approaches to Open Banking.● 7:00 – How has the state of regulations in the US impacted Relay’s growth?● 8:30 – What are the incentives and motivations for Plaid’s clients on the bank side?● 11:34 – Frederick shares about OneSpan’s client education around security in Open Banking.● 13:30 – John explains why he thinks that regulations are not as vital as some might think.● 16:47 – What is going right and what needs to be fixed in the US situation?● 24:49 – How do US companies regulate the risk of moving to APIs?● 27:46 – Is it reasonable to draw a compliance line for customers with a certain value of assets?● 29:48 – Jason and Frederick weigh the risk vs. reward of Open Banking for smaller banks.● 31:39 – How much pushback does John see from Plaid’s screen scraping guidelines?● 36:08 – Where does Yoseph feel constrained in the current system?● 41:00 – Everyone shares the one key thing that they believe the US Open Banking system should focus on moving forward.3 Key Points1. While the US finds itself years ahead of Europe on the practice of Open Banking, it finds itself an equal amount behind Europe on regulations.2. Open Banking companies in the US face the challenge of switching over to Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) without risking data and client rights.3. Screen scraping, or consumer data extraction for automation of previously-manual actions, is still allowed under PSD2. It has actually been updated in its security measures.Tweetable Quotes:● “It’s no secret that Europe has been pretty much at the forefront of the Open Banking initiatives around the world through initiatives such as PSD1 and PSD2.” – Jason Pereira● “To actually deliver true open banking, the dream that we all think of...I think that’s a dream that will only exist as a result of Challenger or Neobanks.” – Yoseph West● “At this point, regulation is actually very helpful to create a level playing field for security. Regulation can help to make sure that all the players in the ecosystem...implement the right security technology.” – Frederik Mennes● “The key thing that makes the US market special is that it is being driven by consumer demand.” – John PittsResources Mentioned:● Facebook – Jason Pereira’s Facebook● LinkedIn – Jason Pereira’s LinkedIn● – Sign up for Jason Pereira’s newsletter● – Website for Woodgate Financial● Plaid – Website for Plaid● OneSpan – Website for OneSpan● Relay – Website for Relay