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July 12, 2021updated 13 Jul 2021 3:03pm

Bank transformation in weeks: Modularbank founder speaks with RBI

By Douglas Blakey

It is a strong and confident pitch and all the key words are utilised in as few sentences as possible as Modularbank co-founder and CEO Vilve Vene sets out her stall. She tells Douglas Blakey that her firm can deliver and efficient and flexible premium product to established and new banks in a mere matter of weeks.

Flexible, sophisticated, innovative, speed to market, agile, passion, technical excellence, industry experience and trusted: and that is just the start of Vilve Vene’s pitch to incumbent banks, neobank challengers and non-financial institutions looking to roll out consumer finance products.

In her extensive career in financial services over 30 years, Vene has played a key role in the creation of Hansabank (now Swedbank), the largest bank in the Baltic states and one of the first digital banks in Europe.

She also co-founded Icefire, the company now responsible for providing the digital infrastructure for the Estonian tax system and recently sold to Checkout.com.

Modularbank CEO and co-founder Vilve Vene speaks with RBI editor Douglas Blakey

Modularbank: sophisticated, flexible, modular-based banking in a box

Vene’s latest project is Estonia-headquartered Modularbank, founded in 2019. She says that it offers sophisticated and flexible modular-based banking. Modularbank is a core banking technology provider, it offers a banking platform in a box Vene says that it has everything a bank or credit institution needs for compliant day-to-day operations.

She adds that Modularbank clients can launch new business lines or replace broken systems and introduce new products with very little development.

And in todays ever more competitive market, speed to market is crucial.

“Our working model is agile and nimble, allowing us to keep the time to market as low as possible – without compromising the quality of our solution. Modularbank is built on technological excellence but also a wealth of experience in banking. We always look to find solutions for our customer’s business first, we don’t just supply technology. We are trusted partners for our customers, not just platform providers.”

Each module is a separate service offered over APIs. Modularbank can be implemented as software-as-a-service removing the maintenance burden and cutting operating costs. Alternatively, it can be run in-house giving the bank full control over the platform.

Modularbank: expanding internationally, increasing headcount

Looking ahead, Modularbank has big ambitions and post the capital raising, the financial ammunition to continue expanding headcount and growing internationally. Moreover, the pandemic has heightened the realisation among the incumbent banks that they must address the challenges of running on legacy infrastructure.

Nor do they have the luxury of several years to embark upon costly and disruptive digital transformation projects.

Vene plans a near doubling of her team to about 100 this year, is opening an office in the UK and will grow its presence in continental Europe. And it will continue to win business that once might have been the preserve of a small core of well-established tech providers.

Given her track record to date and determination to succeed, it would be a bold or reckless observer who bet against Modularbank succeeding.

Modularbank API-first cloud-based banking platform summarised in just 80 seconds:

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