There is an increasing need for transparency. People want to know where the bank invests in and whether their own investments are secure. Banks need massive reserves and next to this there is an increasing diversity of customers that need money for a project. Me personally tried to find funding for a house to rent out, it didn't fall into a category the bank currently finances, and of the many crowd funding websites there was none that I could reach out to. It needed to be a startup, non-profit, company registered by the government etc. So this couldn't be established through a website or bank and I had to find a private investor.
What it does
It is an high tech crowd sourcing platform where users can place and invest in projects. In other words, it the traditional banking where the bank provides money for projects and safe money from people. But this is done in a new fashion way, more transparency, more trust, more agility in terms of projects, more direct communication.
When they are able to provide a platform, where the customer is responsible, and the bank only provides the infrastructure it would make banking for different parties sensible again. And while the infrastructure is provided by ING. but other banks are free to participate, rate, support projects. One of the area that can grow big is environment projects. these projects cannot grow to big because there is significant lose of power over long distance cables and it takes up quite some space.
The information from transactions will generate profiles by type of customers, feeding these profiles with machine learning on the website to be able to catch up on the latest trends.
How I built it
We divided the work, two people working with the API's and the data processing, two people building the website and one person creating the presentation and the designs.
Challenges I ran into
We had great trouble with the absence of test data. We wanted to focus more on artificial intelligence, internet of things and machine learning. We created our own data, but this decided to focus more on extra functionalities and design to avoid navel gazing.
Accomplishments that I'm proud of
We are proud to provide more than just a simple tweak, but we were able to provide a comprehensive idea that has good direct revenue by not-yet-launched rent of projects and side profits as well like rating projects.
We are also proud to make the actual API calls, we could not use it much due to the low amount of data but it was quite an accomplishment.
Let me also tell you something about the logo, it represents both a tree, symbolizing growth and an arrow pointing upwards suggesting positive force. It is green to represent the expected environment friendly solutions that need funding. The 'leaves' of the logo are copied from the tail of the lion of the ING logo
What I learned
We learned most from the feedback we received from ING employees. It was very interesting to hear that they see recommended a platform where other banks could participate at all levels.
What's next for GROW
The idea cannot exist without the strong support of a corporate bank. So we very much hope for this. We want to see where the biggest investments are needed. Extra features could be portals for companies to manage their GROW and other investments in a nice overview.
Next creating an infrastructure for the bank accounts and a safe payout system.