Original-Research: FinLab AG - von GBC AG
Einstufung von GBC AG zu FinLab AG
Unternehmen: FinLab AG
Anlass der Studie: GBC-Management Interview
Kursziel auf Sicht von: -
Analyst: Cosmin Filker; Marcel Goldmann
FinLab investment Iconiq Lab Holding GmbH has recently completed a seven-
digit financing round with Hightech Gründerfonds (HTGF III) and FinLab AG.
The money is to be used to further develop the Asset Management as a
Service (AMaaS) platform. This platform is intended to help external asset
managers to implement crypto strategies. GBC analyst Cosmin Filker spoke
with the FinLab Management Board member Juan Rodriguez about the potential
of this platform and the latest developments in other investments.
GBC AG: Mr Rodriguez, Iconiq Lab's recent financing round is to be used to
develop the Asset Management as a Service platform. Can you give us more
details about this product?
Juan Rodriguez: AMaaS is a 360-degree service platform for crypto asset
managers to optimize the execution of their own crypto investment
strategies. The AMaaS ecosystem comprises a seamless portal through which
managers may digitally launch regulated financial vehicles, execute
transactions through an aggregated orderbook from global crypto exchanges,
engage licensed crypto custodians as well as world-class auditors, banks,
fund accountants and other vital fund service providers. The AMaaS platform
is secured by the ICON Vault, a bespoke, secure digital wallet solution
utilizing cold and hot storage solutions. AMaaS is the infrastructure
supporting the Iconiq Funds' crypto asset index funds and is now available
to any external crypto asset manager.
GBC AG: The crypto markets have been characterised by negative trends in
recent months (publicity, volatility, etc.). How do you assess the current
market situation and what impact does this have on Iconiq Lab's product?
Juan Rodriguez: Basically, your question is about crypto currencies, which
we, like Iconiq Lab, do not generally invest in. FinLab has not invested in
any crypto currency or token to date, and will not do so in the future. We
only invest in companies that work and earn their money with a business
model on or with blockchain. In the long run, blockchain will be the medium
that reduces intermediaries and creates the greatest possible transparency.
Blockchain is an issue for the long-term. The internet did not emerge
overnight either, so we consider our investments to be long-term. The
negative headlines only result from the high volatility and extreme price
fluctuations. But I will come back to your question specifically. Iconiq
Lab's product will in particular offer significant transparency and very
high quality products to the end customer. At this time, crypto products
are not necessarily characterised by a high degree of transparency and
quality. They are rather more geared towards the speculative and short-term
trading of crypto currencies. However, this must change in the short term.
The quality and transparency of the markets will be improved as a result of
institutional players, such as Vontobel, entering the market, in addition
to the shift from ICOs (Initial Coin Offerings) to STOs (Security Token
Offerings) and the associated increase in investor rights (e.g. voting and
dividend rights). This should also result in greater price stability.
GBC AG: Deposit Solutions, which runs an Open Banking platform, is the
flagship of your investment portfolio. The most recent financing round was
conducted at a valuation of USD 500 million, whereas its value at the time
of FinLab's initial investment was just USD 25 million. Deposit Solutions
recently announced the entering in the US market. What potential do you see
Juan Rodriguez: Deposit Solutions (Deposit) is currently active in Germany
under the brand Zinspilot and in the Netherlands and Austria under the
brand Savedo. It is also active in Switzerland since last week. Other
European countries will follow in 2019. In addition to B2C business via the
aforementioned channels, we have connected various large POS (Point of
Sales) such as Deutsche Bank and FFB (Fidelity Fund Bank) to the platform.
By entering the Swiss market, we are opening up the funding channel for
foreign currencies for our product banks. For example, a German bank can
offer investments such as overnight and fixed-term deposits in Swiss francs
(CHF). The same applies to the USA and the US dollar. Vice versa, US or
Swiss banks could also offer their product range to European customers via
Deposit. Ultimately, we are using Deposit's platform and the unique single-
account solution to give B2C customers access to a wide range of products.
The platform also simplifies the process of sourcing retail investments for
product banks without using expensive proprietary retail infrastructure
(e.g. branches and marketing).
GBC AG: The authentication solution from Darmstadt-based AUTHADA, another
portfolio company, is being used for the first time by the direct bank
comdirect. Should this be seen as a milestone?
Juan Rodriguez: The milestone is the solution behind it, which has been
developed by AUTHADA. The solution meets all the requirements of the German
Money Laundering Act, the German Banking Act and the Federal Office of
Administration. To this end, the solution(s) guarantee(s) maximum security
and is/are certified by the Federal Office for Information Security.
The authentication solution identifies the customer in seconds and they can
be immediately activated by any bank or service provider. A major advantage
is the elimination of the media disruption that occurs when using postal or
video identities. Banks experience significantly reduced conversion and
onboarding times, and thus incur far lower costs. As one of the leading
online banks, comdirect recognised this at a very early stage and
introduced it last year. In addition to comdirect, we have other banks -
both online and offline - in the sales pipeline, ready to introduce our
services in 2019.
GBC: Mr Rodriguez, thank you for speaking with us.
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Offenlegung möglicher Interessenskonflikte nach § 85 WpHG und Art. 20 MAR Beim oben analysierten Unternehmen ist folgender möglicher Interessenkonflikt gegeben: (5a,5b,6a,11); Einen Katalog möglicher Interessenkonflikte finden Sie unter:
Date (time) of completion of german version: 28/01/2019 (11:32 am)
Date (time) of first distribution of german version: 28/01/2019 (3:00 pm)
Date (time) of completion of english version: 30/01/2019 (3:34 pm)
Date (time) of first distribution of english version: 30/01/2019 (4:00 pm)
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