Most of our users and investors have been following MarketsFlow with keen interest, and you have seen us roll out innovating products one after the other for the last 3 years.
It started in 2017, after a year and half of FCA authorisation application as Investment Adviser & Manager, we launched award-winning Portfolio Optimisation platform in 2018. We started offering optimised portfolios to users as Separately Managed Accounts with a minimum account size of £25,000.
Then after months of severe brainstorming, and a big desire to bring optimised portfolios to everyone, we launched one of the most advanced Pooled Capital Portfolios in May 2019, which offered everyone the ability to invest in MarketsFlow’s optimised portfolios from only £10.00 on the App.
Constant innovation is a hallmark of our company in its brief history.
Last year, the Holdun Family of Canada took a stake in the company. As a result, I had to spend significant amount of time in Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver.
These trips were eye-opening and I learnt a great deal from the Canadian fintech ecosystem.
We wanted to launch the Pooled Capital Portfolios App in Canada, with Holdun but found that listing funds would take over a year due to regulatory requirements. I wanted to move fast and started looking for a quicker, simpler financial App with a mass appeal for Canada.
Once again, the relentless zeal for constant innovation lead me to our biggest innovation to this date – Strowz. But this time, I shared this huge responsibility with my Canadian Co-founder Catherine Beauvais-Gascon.
Catherine brought the missing elements to MarketsFlow: spirit, creativity and immersive user experience.
Whilst most companies would brandish terms like spirit and immersive user experience as if they were a commodity, however Catherine truly lived by these principles. Like Apple, we wanted to give Strowz App a lively spirit & a creative personality.
We looked at every financial product and saw them as transactional at best. We wanted Strowz to serve a higher purpose.
Here, I am attaching one of the early drafts Catherine and I made back in February. It seems almost unbelievable to look at this and compare to the current amazing interface we have on Strowz. But remember, everything starts with a dream and a vision, even the early Apple computers were just slabs of motherboards.
Look how far we have come.
So let’s step back a little. In November 2019, I studied the Savings and Round-ups App market in the UK, which amounted to 10.5M in 2020. I looked at the US and the UK markets and players, and based on our investment management experience, holding client money permissions and the expertise in data mining, I wanted to build the next generation of Savings app. To me things were already looking dated with the current savings Apps out there.
We filed for our FCA AISP application in Jan 2020 and set to work. In under 2 months combined with relentless work ethic and constant iterating mode, we had done the impossible.
Strowz was born. Strowz is the next generation of MarketsFlow which sits within the App as the investment section as seen below.
As you can tell, I could write a book about our experiences in the last 3 months of engineering Strowz. In fact, you never know … 😊
But to keep it short, let’s talk about the now and the future.
Our small but hugely talented team loves Strowz App. In the last 5 weeks we have added over £2.7M targeted savings but most importantly, it appeals to everyone. The biggest Savings category is home related, house deposits and improvements, followed by travel.
There is too much to talk about this amazing App which includes revolutionary Savings Buckets, highly advanced Round-Ups, Bank Accounts linkage and our Investment platform.
Since launch, we have already rolled out Automated and Manual deposits functionality based on users’ feedback, and if history is to tell anything we will have constantly iterated this product hugely using customer feedback loop. Today Paul our CTO told me that this is the best feedback loop product he has ever worked on.
As this product was built for scaling rapidly in the UK and launching in Canada and the US, we will be looking at adding 100,000 users by the end of 2020.
Therefore the product had to have the mass appeal, and I am so pleased that we feel it serves that very purpose. When you download this App on Apple Store and Google Play, you will feel that it is a design-led product just like Apple products.
It does not mean that we stop innovating here. I can tell you that we already have the future pipeline products in place but let’s make this a hugely successful App first.
I am very excited to have Catherine on this journey as the Co-Founder and Chief Experience Officer of Strowz. You will have seen her blogs and you will be seeing more of them in the near future as she takes on the role of influencing users to create Savings Buckets and live their dreams.
Afterall, everything starts with a dream!
With love & hope,