Last week we attended the prestigious ACCIS Roundtable 2018 Event in Istanbul hosted by Turkish member Kredi Kayıt Bürosu (KKB) which is the central credit bureau in Turkey and supported by other Turkish sponsors: CyberArts, Tazi, Colendi and Crede. ACCIS is short for Association of Consumer Credit Information Suppliers, which is a Belgium based trade association whose mission statement is enabling individuals and businesses to take informed decisions and conduct secure, trustworthy and efficient financial operations. The association represents the largest group of credit reference agencies in the world. Currently, ACCIS brings together 42 members across 28 European countries and 8 associate and affiliate members from all other continents.
Colendi was among the presenters in the panel: “Opportunities for Innovation in the Credit Referencing sector”. Colendi’s revolutionary vision of alternative ways to calculate a better credit score and using the latest blockchain technology in order to be able to carry out this mission made Colendi one of the hot topics of the day. The panel raised a lot of attention and the team was thrilled with the attendee’s interest in finding out more about Colendi and the innovation and tech-work in the background.
We also had the chance to meet with Enrique Velazquez, General Director of ACCIS when he visited our booth along with other high level professionals from Equifax, FICO, World Bank and other companies. He was kind enough to thank us for our interest and participation in the event. They all came up with a lot of questions about the project and I was more than glad to address each of his questions and informing him on the Colendi vision and ideas, as well as the latest situation of the products, operations and upcoming roadmap.
ACCIS’s mission statement clearly indicates that the industry is invested in delivering useful, explainable, real-time and cost-effective credit scores with the ambition to meet the needs of the customers, who are banks, retailers or individuals. It is crucially important to look very carefully into this statement to judge how the lending environment in the world is functioning now versus how it should be functioning in the future. When we were describing Colendi, we have used these adjectives many times, which are apparently shared by such a visionary association like ACCIS. However, we have to ask ourselves how much can the existing companies suffice these values put forth by ACCIS.
The incident of Equifax’s data hacking is still very vivid in our minds, especially in the victims’ minds, who lost their entire personal and financial data to a malicious group that clearly has the intention of exploiting them. We shouldn’t really put all the blame on Equifax though because as long as the single point entries exist in the data storage sector, there will always be attacks and hacks. No matter how hard they work or how dedicated they are in data protection, the attack is a possibility and there is nothing we can do with the latest technology. Well, except for changing the technology we utilize. Colendi bases all data handling and user account management on the blockchain technology with the objective of offering their users a credit score and user account which is considered a mathematical impossibility. The users will know with Colendi that their data is stored in a much safer environment than any credit bureau’s central databases. ACCIS states than their industry ensures that its databases are accurate, verifiable and reliable. These are all very correct adjectives for the data, but still unable to satisfy the safety that the users need, and if the industry cannot find a solution for the data handling, probably the scores will no longer be useful for the general population.
We have described before how to calculate the Colendi Score instantly and receive the updated score at any moment. This is what we call, a real-time credit score calculation. This enables our users to connect any of their data to the application and receive and updated score instantly. Up until now, real-time scores only checked the current balance on people’s bank accounts, therefore making the real-time concept is actually a bit bulkier than Colendi. We envision a future where as well as the credit making decisions, the credit score itself can be created and updated in real-time with the latest set of data. We feel that this additional layer would also play a great role in the future adoption of Colendi Score by the lending parties.
Colendi Score is designed to be a visionary product, one that embraces the ambitions of the industry and introduces the latest perks of the technology to scale the credit scene to unchartered realms of lending industry. We hope to achieve 1 billion users in the following years with the help and support of the unbanked and underbanked population who are currently deprived of any access to any type of financing. We are aware of the fact that along with this profound mission comes the responsibility of integrating seamlessly into the current models of business and credit industry as well. My take is that the quality and utilization of Colendi’s work will exponentially grow as we continue to engage with industry leaders, visionaries and professionals. That is why we were excited and grateful to step into the ACCIS Roundtable 2018 Event in Istanbul and have the opportunity to have insightful exchanges with the sector professionals from all around the world.