Swittle, a fintech company, is dedicated to optimising the receivables process, enabling business owners to focus more on what they love: running and expanding their businesses
‘Sustainability in fintech represents a significant shift towards eco-friendly practices, primarily by reducing the reliance on paper in financial transactions’
Specifically designed for Micro, Small, and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs), Swittle offers flexible technology solutions that can be tailored to meet the unique needs of each business. “Our goal is to address common business challenges such as disruptions in cash flow, operational hurdles, reconciliation difficulties, and a lack of clear visibility on receivables. By doing so, we empower business owners to operate more efficiently and effectively,” André ZEIN – Director & Founder, Swittle Ltd said.
In the summer of 2023, Swittle successfully debuted in Malaysia as a national Electronic Bill Payment and Presentment platform, following the acquisition of necessary regulatory approvals. “As our pilot phase concludes, we are now transitioning to the mass onboarding stage in Malaysia. This includes forming indirect sales partnerships with banks and major institutions, alongside initiating marketing drives,” he said. “Looking ahead, we aim to extend our reach to neighbouring countries like Indonesia and Thailand and are also considering expansion into new regions in the Middle East and Europe.”
What are the benefits of partnering with your organisation?
“Our partnership models are diverse, ranging from technology supply via white labelling to collaborative ventures with financial and payment bodies.
“For banks and Electronic Money Institutions (EMIs), partnering with Swittle enhances their business-to-business (B2B) services by incorporating receivables, collection, and settlement management. These solutions are not only profitable, generating deposits and direct transaction revenue, but they also help in retaining MSME and corporate clients, attracting new ones, and creating prospects for biller financing through methods like factoring or bill discounting.
“For Money Transfer Operators (MTOs) and Money Exchange Operators (MEOs) that have a physical presence in the market, Swittle offers an expansion of their cash and Point of Sale (POS) collections through a network of Swittle billers.”
How important is customer-centricity in your organisation, and what initiatives have you undertaken to ensure the customer receives a premiere, round-the-clock service?
“Swittle is designed as a self-service platform, aiming for minimal need for support intervention by providing completely automated reconciliation and multi-tiered settlement processes. We empower our customers with Do-It-Yourself (DIY) features, enabling them to tailor their business models, manage billing templates, set up business rules, and launch consumer-initiated campaigns using payment invitation forms.
“However, our commitment to customer care remains unwavering. Regardless of their size, we provide personalised onboarding support, custom integrations when necessary, and are dedicated to promptly addressing and resolving any inquiries, claims, or complaints our customers may have 24-7.”
What are some of the cyber security challenges in fintech, and how does your organisation stay ahead of the game?
“Swittle leverages a bank-grade technology stack originally developed by our parent company, TechnOrion, for significant digital transformation initiatives, primarily in financial institutions. Our robust security framework effectively thwarts most types of fraudulent intrusions, underpinned by a rigorously audited event-driven architecture. We also enforce stringent usage and billing volume limits, tailored to the type of business and its standing in the banking sector.
“However, we recognise that no system is impenetrable, as cybercriminals continually evolve their phishing tactics and penetration strategies. To counter this, we vigilantly monitor for access breaches, actively block potential spammers, and manage biller onboarding through a semi-automated process to maintain high security standards.”
What other tools does your organisation offer to its clients?
“Our unique selling points (USPs) set us apart from other Electronic Bill Presentment and Payment (EBPP) services:
Comprehensive Bill Presentment: Unlike others who might only provide a basic invoice summary, we allow our customers to create detailed billing templates. These can include an unlimited array of details such as full itemisation, narrative descriptions, attachments, terms and conditions requiring payer agreement, and flexible payment rules for exact, partial, or overpayments.
“Consumer-Initiated Payment Module: Clients can design and publish payment invitation forms using our platform. Swittle handles the management of these campaigns and related interactions in real-time. This feature is versatile, ideal for promotional activities, fundraisers, event invitations, special occasions, or even for online order processing in the supply chain.
“Automated Daily Settlements: We are among the few organisations that offer daily automated settlements to merchants every day of the year. This feature is particularly appealing to MSMEs that have round-the-clock collections.”
Do you offer any customised solutions according to clients’ needs?
“For large corporate clients who require an integrated alternative to a hosted billing model, or for specialised solutions, we provide bespoke integration services. Additionally, we offer access to our extensive API, enabling the integration of custom channels or the interfacing to client-specific systems from our platform.”
Sustainability holds the opportunity to transform the financial sector into one that contributes towards making the world a better place. What does sustainability in fintech look like?
“Sustainability in fintech represents a significant shift towards eco-friendly practices, primarily by reducing the reliance on paper in financial transactions. By eliminating paper for bill dissemination, reconciliation, and financial notices, fintech can drastically reduce the environmental impact of traditional methods. Furthermore, the move towards minimising cash usage aligns with sustainable practices. In addition, fintech can foster transparency and accountability in financial activities, encouraging more responsible and sustainable practices.”
Do you believe Cyprus provides a nurturing environment for innovation companies and startups? If so, what are the benefits? Are there any areas that need improvement?
“Cyprus shows considerable promise as a supportive hub for innovative startups. Recent advancements in immigration and labour policies, like the Business Facilitation Unit and various tax incentives, have made the island an attractive destination for foreign companies either to establish a base or to relocate. Its strategic position at the crossroads of three continents, along with favourable weather and a variety of leisure activities, plays a significant role in drawing talent.
“However, there are several areas where improvement is needed. Challenges such as high levels of bureaucracy in regulatory and licensing agencies, average digital public and financial services, and issues related to real estate availability and affordability in relation to average incomes still pose obstacles to the relocation of startup businesses to Cyprus.”
Can you tell us about some of the initiatives your organisation has undertaken to support philanthropic/humanitarian causes?
“Swittle is actively engaged in integrating NGOs, religious, and welfare organisations into our client portfolio. We offer them specially reduced fee structures. Moreover, as a central player in payment orchestrations, Swittle presents a unique opportunity for consent-based donations by payers. This can be either to specific organisations or a predefined group of organizations, involving options like rounding up payment amounts for welfare causes or adding specific amounts to their payments as contributions.”
What are some of the fintech trends set to level up in 2024?
“In 2024, we foresee several fintech trends that are poised to significantly elevate the sector:
Generative AI Integration: The inclusion of generative AI in most fintech applications is set to revolutionise user experience. This technology can personalise financial advice, automate customer service interactions, and enhance predictive analytics, leading to more tailored and efficient services.
“Embedded Finance and Banking: Embedded finance, or the integration of financial services into non-financial apps and websites, is expected to grow exponentially. This trend allows for seamless financial transactions in various consumer platforms, enhancing convenience and accessibility for users.
“Other Trends: Additionally, we can anticipate advancements in areas like open banking, which promotes data sharing between financial institutions for improved services. There’s also a growing focus on sustainability in fintech, with more companies adopting green finance practices and supporting environmentally friendly initiatives.”
What are your plans for the future?
“We are actively engaged in research and development, aligning with current fintech trends. Soon, we will introduce a series of generative AI enhancements. These advancements are designed to minimise the need for manual customisations, thereby providing our customers with an enriched experience. This will include streamlined template setup, customisable payment forms, multi-lingual support, enhanced customer assistance, and more insightful analytics regarding their billing activities and customer engagements.
“Additionally, we are in the process of expanding our services to include a reverse auction mechanism for biller financing in collaboration with partner banks. This new feature will utilise each biller’s collection scores and billing history to facilitate more efficient financial transactions.”