Our annual Hackatrix took place this Saturday, in Lima, Perú, which we organized together with one of the largest banks in Latin America, BCP. It’s the fifth year in a row that we have held the hackathon in Lima. As you may know, the main objective of Hackatrix is to bring technology enthusiasts and developers together to rapidly create working prototypes of new products and services. This year, the focus was on fintech, and creating a functional prototype of an idea for new financial products or services.
Over the past few years, fintech has rapidly transformed the financial sector, and shows little sign of slowing down. Technology is providing new ways for people to manage their finances, and access core financial services. Faced with this disruption, large banks have increasingly been working with fintech startups to keep up with the rapid pace of innovation. As a result, at Hackatrix, we wanted to challenge the best technology experts to come up with innovative ideas that would continue to push the sector forward.
More than 200 people attended the event – with various backgrounds ranging from Scrum Masters and developers, to UX experts and quality assurance engineers. Teams used technologies ranging from facial recognition, blockchain, machine learning and artificial intelligence, bots and chatbots, mobile wallets and e-wallets, to web, mobile applications, and digital platforms.
There were three main awards during the event: innovation and popularity. In addition, we ran a “code challenge”, where one person from each team was challenged to create two algorithms to provide a solution to a fintech problem. The jurors assessed the projects according to complexity, completeness, innovation and organization. The overall winning team for innovation was “Dev Master” (with team members Karol Condori, Javier Díaz, Hervey Quiñones, Jesús Gonzales and Gianfranco Manrique) who created a digital platform designed to make it easier to auction debts to financial organizations.
30 teams took part in the event, and here I want to share some of the highlights of some of the fascinating projects that they created:
- A digital platform to make it easier to send remittances between different countries – helping the different parties manage the transaction locally, and lowering the costs of the transfer.
- A smart electronic wallet that enables consumers to pay for things via their cell phone, while also accessing promotions and discounts based on their location and preferences.
- Improved identification services for banks and financial service providers, by using facial recognition and a speech bot.
- An anti-fraud bot for electronic payments. At the moment of payment, the bot checks the information of the owner of the card, and using artificial intelligence then sends the information to the bank.
- A personal and collaborative financial savings platform. The platform would make it possible to apply for a personal loan, or obtain a loan for a group of people, all managed by a bot.
- A blockchain solution to improve supply chain operations. This solution would make it easier for organizations to operate their supply chains, and make payments to suppliers, while lowering the risk of fraud.
I want to thank the technical committee who judged the participants, which included Mauricio Albán Salas, Manager of Architecture Technology for BCP, and who has experience in creating highly-skilled teams for cloud, big data and blockchain; Mario Cruz Aguilar, Co-Founder and CEO of Kontigo.pe, a platform that connects people requesting credit or insurance with financial companies; Gabriel dos Reis, Manager of Architecture Services for BCP; and Jorge Jaime Landaburu, CTO of Aseguralohoy.com and Director of Bluemetrik Consulting.