Please walk us through your entrepreneurial journey and background before you started? Any interesting stories?
We (Ankit and Arpit) were having several discussions surrounding challenges facing the indian legal industry and specially the sheer waste of time and effort that was going around in executing procedures which logically made no sense and were only being done because of inherited practices. Around us everything had gone online and mobile but all regulatory process like sending documents, signing form etc. everything was still offline, which wasted a lot of time and effort. We started realising that current technology can solve a lot of these issues and make life simpler and easier for everyone. We started with digital contracting…as we both saw a huge opportunity to use technology in bringing a large impact.
But talking to people in financial industry we understood more needs and how paperwork could be eliminated totally.
Being in the legal industry I could relay the pain of everyday procedures and Ankit was aware of technologies being applied globally to the finance sector. Ankur was a tech genius, so we decided to get him onboard to build the technology for the future.
About founding team
Ankit Ratan: Silver medalist at IIT Delhi. Published 3 research papers and filed a patent. Worked for boutique Analytics firm in US for 2 years deploying solutions at Citi Bank and Metlife. Started own company in Analytics in India in 2013, worked with Axis Bank, Maersk and Benetton helping them with Fraud Analytics. Co-founded current company in 2015, with the aim of creating a trust mechanism in digital economy.
Ankur Pandey: Studied at IIT Khargpur. Has worked on multiple web projects in his short career. Started Quesky in 2013 to help students prepare for examinations. It was a Intelligent question creation platform that used machine learning to self-curate questions. Co-founded current company in 2015, with the aim of creating a trust mechanism in digital economy.
Arpit Ratan: Studied at ILS Law College and completed LLM from Pune University. Has co-authored India’s only statistical research study of Supreme Court Judgments. Worked in a 40 year old corporate law firm based out of Mumbai. Started own law firm in 2012, worked in several courts and judicial forums. Taken lectures on Legal Aspects of E-wallets and Payment Gateways. Co-founded current company in 2015, with the aim of creating a trust mechanism in digital economy.
Tell us little about your product/ platform
The banking sector is going digital with emerging fintech players and also digital initiatives within the banks. But one key aspect which is still largely offline is the Regulatory (KYC/AML) and legal (Contracting) processes. There are requests from the industry and also pressure to dilute the KYC or make it simpler. But Digital world has greater risks and greater chances of fraud. Dilution might lead to greater frauds and greater erosion of trust in the digital banking world. Hence dilution is not the solution The reason why fintech is asking for dilution is because KYC is today seen as hassle. What the regulatory space needs is technology lead innovation. Infact there is a name for this new emerging sub- Area- Regtech. Signzy makes digital regulatory processes simpler, yet secure and compliant. The products include Digital Know Your Customer (KYC) APIs and Digital Contracting. Signzy’s APIs assist companies comply with RBIs KYC norms and AML/CFT guidelines in an automated and hassle free way using artificial intelligence. We are also running some pilots using block chains, which will allow financial service companies to make their regulatory processes like compliance with KYC norms and AML/CFT guidelines decentralized and secure.
Tell us about your customer traction
Our version 1 of APIs were released on March 31 and then version 2 was released on 15th July. In this period as of today we have 41 clients engaged at evaluating of these 28 are already using the APIs of which 7 are already Live. We are seeing a 100% MoM engagement increase.
Till August we have had a cumulative total of 1.1 lakh API calls.
How has been your association with IBM Global Entrepreneur? How important do you think IBM Global Entrepreneur is to help and improve the ecosystem?
Our partnership with IBM through GEP is one of the most valuable relationship as a company.
Current strategy of offering cloud credits to early startups is super-helpful. As the credits are suficient for not only a basic MVP but also early stage of the company it really allows startups to experiment without thinking about the tech cost.
At this stage this is very valuable as lot of resources might get consumed in experimentation. If the cost of this is too high startups might not choose to experiment. Infact I recall from my previous startup experience that we actually decided to deploy a local server for experimentation as cloud servers were too expensive for this use case.
Further they have acted as perfect partners for growth. Helping with connects within IBM, industry, investors and media.
What’s your take on the IBM Cloud? How is it helping your start-up grow?
IBM cloud infrastructure is best in class in terms of performance and security which is great for enterprise apps such as us.
Also given that IBM is a brand name in the industry ( specially due to their Mainframe leadership), it gives comfort to our enterprise clients.
What is your road ahead for your start-up?
We are on track to building a global digital trust system. India is an amazing opportunity specially with the coming up of India Stack. Our goal is to become market leaders in India and then aim to expand to other geographies leveraging our expertise at providing digital trust solutions.