The first initiative by Area42, an innovation lab backed by Credendo, Belgium’s export credit agency, is now live.
Marjory, a tech startup which enables service providers such as insurers and fintechs to integrate into marketplace operator systems, has launched in a private beta. Kamel Tansaout, CEO of the company, tells GTR that the beta involves a European e-tailer, which currently operates one of the biggest marketplaces in the region, as well as selected service providers.
As trade becomes more platform-based, with new paradigms such as blockchain, which facilitates more open account trade, and 3D printing, which shortens the supply chain, the traditional model of trade insurance risks becoming obsolete. Speaking to GTR in February, Christophe Spoerry, who leads Area42, explained that solutions such as Marjory, while outside of the traditional remit of export credit, will serve as a way for insurers to reach new clients, particularly given the explosive growth in e-commerce in recent years.
“When I was at the Euler Hermes Digital Agency we were invited to many marketplaces at a very late stage of development, and this made credit insurance integration extremely hard because the model had already been created. The position that we are taking is about thinking early stage. We want to create a solution that a marketplace wants from day one when they start to draw out their user journeys,” says Spoerry. “Once we solve this core process issue then we can bring in a catalogue of service partners and integrate financing, KYC, AML, and of course credit insurance.”
Tansaout, who before joining Marjory was B2B head at marketplace solution provider Mirakl, explains that the startup also enables marketplace operators to reconcile the business model of the marketplaces they launch with their own legacy systems and organisations. “It is a lever for them to invite their customers and service providers to move with them from the old century to the new one,” he says. “For the financial industry it is an amazing opportunity. What does the financial industry need? You need to be able to handle a lot of transactions. Can you imagine all of the transactions that move out of this system because the company was not able to provide the user experience, the marketplace and the digital assets for the customer? With Marjory, this is being made available, and the potential market is huge,” he adds.
The team behind Marjory plans for it to enter general release by October this year, by which time they expect to have a number of live customers using the solution. Marjory will also be working on outreach and consultancy services to educate financial service providers on how to better integrate with the growing number of B2B and B2C marketplaces around the world.