Kiwi startup raises over $1M to protect transfer of personal information
Cloud-based platform for securely transferring and storing personal information FileInvite has raised over $1million in equity funding from New Zealand and Australian investors.
The startup offers businesses a more efficient and safer alternative to email to manage their customer’s personal information and expects to benefit from a tightening of international data privacy regulations.
Originally developed for managing creative and media files among advertising agencies, Auckland-based FileInvite streamlines the process of requesting, receiving and storing personal information without the need to use email.
The three-year-old company already counts the majority of its customers in the USA, Canada and Australia, predominantly in the mortgage broking market, and expects to grow as businesses respond to new regulations designed to protect consumer data.
These include the update to Australia’s Privacy Act in February requiring mandatory disclosure of a breach of personal data, the introduction of the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in May and in New Zealand, the Privacy Bill.
For brokers and advisers, collecting multiple electronic files containing the personal information necessary to satisfy the application criteria for a loan or policy is time-consuming and adds cost and delay to the approval process.
A typical mortgage application involves 10-15 requests and anywhere up to 25 separate documents.
Consumers have little control over the ongoing security of their information once the application process has been completed.
New investors include Flying Kiwis and NZVIF, as well as IceAngels, Enterprise Angels and private individuals from Australia.
Garth Hinton, a member of lead investor Flying Kiwi Angels, will join FileInvite’s Board as Director and Chair.
“FileInvite is addressing a real pain point among advisor-based businesses and over time will reduce costs throughout the whole value chain for a process like a loan.
“Our investment and Board level support will enable James’ team to replicate their early lead in mortgage broking into new industries and international markets.”
The new funding will enable product development and marketing to extend the AWS-hosted platform to other industries in which advisers hold sensitive personal information, such as immigration, tax accounting and education.
“We offer a safe and easy way to transfer the documents holding the personal information needed for so many everyday processes, like applying for a loan or an immigration visa.
“Our customers don’t want to be in the business of collecting documentation but must do so to meet application criteria and comply with Anti-Money Laundering and other rules,” says FileInvite founder and CEO James Sampson.
“As public awareness of data privacy grows we expect consumers and governments will increasingly demand businesses raise the bar in safeguarding the personal data in their care.”