Venture Vision: Open-banking, partnerships and fast fintech growth

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An Awin interview with Snoop CMO and Co-founder Paul Lloyd.

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Fintech is transforming how all of us manage and improve our financial wellbeing. Attracting $4.5 billion in VC investment in 2021, the UK is Europe’s largest Fintech hub, and ranks second only to the USA globally.

With great innovation comes great opportunity. Now, more than ever, it is imperative for business leaders from all verticals to understand how Fintech, open-banking and apps, are enabling new capabilities in audience engagement and value creation.

Snoop, a UK based Fintech launched in 2020, is a money-simplifying app that helps people spend, save and live smarter through AI-powered personalised advice. Voted a Top 50 Fintech in Europe, Snoop is backed by Salesforce Ventures, and now connects customers to over 50 banks and credit card companies.

In a recent conversation with James Bentley, Awin UK Strategy Director, Snoop CMO and Co-Founder Paul Lloyd shared his reflections on successful scaling, partnerships, and the revolutionary benefits of open-banking for all.

Hi Paul, tell us a little bit about what Snoop does, and your role?

Snoop is a free app that connects to your bank accounts and credit cards, analysing your spending and showing you how to save money at the places you spend. We’re aiming to save every household in the UK more than £1,500 a year.  I’m the CMO so my focus is really on customer growth and engagement, plus building the Snoop brand.

Snoop achieved some huge growth milestones in 2020, what were your highlights?

2020 was an amazing year given we only launched in April. Over 100,000 downloads, 4.8 rating in the App Store, and a top 5 UK Fintech ranking (beating some very big names).  But the highlight for me was our £10 million crowdfund. The fact that our customers were prepared to invest in our future success was genuinely my greatest highlight.

Based on your experience over the past twelve months, what advice do you have for other founders scaling their ventures in these unprecedented times?

Quite simply, I’d just say believe in yourself and what you’re doing. Scaling a business is an incredible challenge – exhilarating when you have a win, and a rollercoaster when something doesn’t go to plan. My biggest learning has been that you just have to back yourself. No-one will understand your business as well as you do, and care about it as much as you do, so make that count.

Snoop is not your first finance venture, can you tell us about your previous journey with Virgin Money, and any important lessons gained?

I had an incredible 20-year journey with Virgin Money – and spent most of that time as CMO. It basically taught me everything I know: the importance of purpose in a business, the power of brand, that passion, commitment and creativity can really change things, and that the way to the right outcome is always through a conversation with your team. Most of all, it was an incredible group of people that I worked with – and I still miss them a lot.  I’m very fortunate that some of them are here with me at Snoop.

How is open-banking changing customer experiences, and is this the beginning of a wider financial services industry transformation?

From my perspective, open-banking is enabling the creation of a generation of businesses that are going to do what banks should always have been doing. Delivering connected, helpful experiences that genuinely make customers better off – and that take the mental load away from consumers. Digital has already transformed the financial services industry (in my view, mostly for the better) – but I’m truly excited about the potential of what it to come, enabled by open-banking, and ultimately open-data.

How does Snoop use open-banking, and what are the benefits for its customers?

Very simply, customers give us permission to access their transactional data through open-banking – and we then work with this data to find smart ways to make them better off. We’re always developing new features that use the customer’s data with this purpose – the opportunities to help are almost endless. With Snoop, it’s easy to see all your bank accounts in one place, giving peace of mind. We spot regular payments and bills, warn you about what’s coming up, and spot when bills are changing and probably shouldn’t be. Our Payment Hub feature allows customers to hand over the management of their household bills to Snoop – with the app taking the strain of working out when contracts are due for renewal, and when the customer can save. Ultimately, we help customers spend, save and live smarter.

How important are brand partnerships to Snoop, and what opportunities are they creating for mutual customer value?

Partnerships are massively important to us. Firstly, they bring the opportunity for us to deliver value to our customers. For example, as Snoop I can tell a brand who their best customers are, who the customers are that used to use them and now don’t, and help them find customers that are fans of their biggest competitors. And then my ask is for those partners to deliver value to these customers. Because if that’s possible, the customer can win – and value for Snoop and the partner can follow.

Would you recommend Awin to other ventures that are interested in expanding their brand partnerships?

I’ve really enjoyed working with Awin. As a business and a team, I find you forward-thinking, open to collaboration and responsive. Plus, the scope of businesses you work with is just incredible – so I’d very much recommend others to engage with you.

What are you and the Snoop team looking forward to in 2021?

Apart from the chance to work together in the same room again (at least for some of the time), I think we’re most looking forward to the product developments we’re going to deliver this year. We’ve got some game-changing features we’ll be delivering that we just can’t wait for customers to try. It should be fun!

If you are interested in exploring Awin partnerships with Snoop, please contact Ellie Davies

To download and start saving with the Snoop money-simplifying app click here

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