For the past twenty-two years, the MassTLC Leadership Awards have celebrated the best and the brightest of the Massachusetts technology ecosystem. The sixteen award categories, including a newly added category for the Massachusetts Growth Company of the Year, highlight the vitality, innovation and importance of the region’s internationally respected technology industry. In addition, for the first time, MassTLC will honor the visionary organizations that are pioneering digital transformations to innovate and re-imagine the future of the Commonwealth’s leading industries in the form of the newly created Digital Transformation awards category.
Winners will be announced at the All Stars of Tech Winners’ Celebration on November 6 at Fenway Park.
In the meantime, let us introduce you to the finalists and the incredible work that they are doing here in Massachusetts – and how they are changing the world.
In the words of their nominators, meet the 2019 “Digital Transformation in Finance and Insurance” finalists.
Transforming What: Algorand exists because in today’s world, value is not flowing quickly or freely enough. A simple financial transaction can take days to clear and finalize. The process is far too expensive, with 5 trillion dollars lost every year to transaction fees of all types. And, 2.2 billion people around the world lack access to modern financial services altogether. With this in mind, Algorand has built the technical innovation for the borderless economy, with a platform that delivers decentralization, scalability and security.
How Technology is Used: Algorand supports the scale, open participation, and transaction finality needed by users to build opportunity and fulfill the original promises of blockchain technology. Algorand’s first-of-its-kind consensus mechanism is permissionless and pure proof-of-stake. It ensures full participation, protection and speed within a truly decentralized network. Furthermore, all transactions are final within Algorand. Once a block appears, you can count on it to be a permanent part of the chain. If the new block contains a payment made to you, you may consider yourself paid and send the goods immediately.
Why it Matters: For customers, Algorand provides a platform that is defining the blockchain standard. For example, TOP Network, the world’s first blockchain powered cloud communications network, partnered with Algorand to collaboratively research and develop scalable blockchain services and infrastructure components on the platform. By leveraging Algorand, TOP Network will be able to develop new, scalable communications solutions that can deliver the potential of blockchain technology to the masses.
Transforming What: DipJar is changing the game of fundraising. The company’s integrated hardware, software & payments platform enables cashless generosity for engaging, joyful & frictionless donations. With DipJar, organizations large and small can collect new funds and capture new donors anywhere they’re face-to-face with supporters — at their headquarters, at special events, and in cause marketing campaigns with corporate and retail partners.
How Technology is Used: DipCast displays and gamifies fundraising by connecting to any screen and providing real-time donation reports and updates. DipCast can be customized for thermometer, voting, and/or counting systems, as well as with customer/event specific graphics.
Why it Matters: DipCast has accelerated fundraising significantly for our DipCast customers who have used it. Many have seen increases of 3-5x in terms of donations over prior fundraising events, some even higher.
Transforming What: Founded by recognized university leaders, Edmit provides personalized insights and advice to help families make smarter college financial choices, leading to less debt and better earnings outcomes. Edmit has helped thousands of families better understand the true cost and value of college, with average savings of over $5,000.
How Technology is Used: Edmit’s proprietary Edstimate algorithm uses data that colleges report about their financial aid, scholarships, and pricing in past years. The company has tens of thousands of data points on what students actually paid for college. Edstimate looks at students that are similar to you and what financial aid they received. If a college has automatic scholarships based on GPA, SAT, or ACT scores, those datapoints are applied to your Edstimate when you qualify. Edstimate also takes into account tuition reciprocity agreements and state grants. Through this process, Edmit helps families find colleges that are a good financial fit where they can afford it and it will present a good value so they can know with confidence they will be able to repay their debt.
Why it Matters:Edmit is now helping 40,000 families a month and has saved paying customers an average of over $5,000. The company is partnering with leading Boston area companies such as Bright Horizons and Citizens Bank to help millions of families make smarter college financial choices.
Transforming What: Data is a valuable strategic asset, but many asset management firms struggle to manage, access and use it efficiently. By some estimates, as much as 70% of analysts’ time can be spent managing raw data, cleaning it and preparing it for analysis. When Quants spend 70% of their time managing raw data and getting it ready for use, that leaves little time to extract insights and make strategic decisions. Fundamental managers and non-technical users have an even more difficult time because they lack an easy way to access and use the data without enlisting programmers or other technical staff, which is inefficient at best. Elsen nPlatform solves these problems by providing access to thousands of premium financial datasets that Elsen has cleansed, normalized and aggregated ensuring they’re compatible for immediate use by entitled customers. Elsen nPlatform allows all types of users to effortlessly access and use thousands of concordant datasets to make better decisions, quickly. It transforms how financial professionals work – including those in investment, research and analytics roles – by offering a way to optimize data vendors, use incompatible data and construct new products and new strategies that generate alpha.
How Technology is Used: The Elsen nPlatform manages everything— ETL (Extract, Transform, Load), data concordance and mapping, row-level permissions, vendor compliance, data processing—so firms can get the most out of their data in the least amount of time. Elsen’s proprietary programming language, Warp, allows users to perform analysis up to 50 times faster than traditional methods. This means that, in addition to improving workflows, the actual analysis happens exponentially faster as well.
Why it Matters: With the Elsen nPlatform Enterprise edition, released in 2018, fundamental managers who would otherwise have to wait days or weeks for their technical counterparts to help them test an idea can now do the analysis themselves in only a few minutes through point-and-click web-based graphic user interface (GUI). And Quants and technical users can quickly extract large quantities of data for analysis/use directly through the database and/or a restful API (application program interface).
Transforming What: TowerIQ simplifies end to end digital experience in the insurance industry by improving stakeholder agility to react to clients needs in real time without the data chaos and inefficiencies created by traditional legacy applications and unstructured data such as PDFs and spreadsheets. With the TowerIQ Platform, organizations can automate low value repetitive tasks so brokers/agents can focus on sales and carriers can triage the best underwriting opportunities to engage and prioritize. The result is all stakeholders along the insurance value chain have simultaneous information resulting in a simplified, optimized insurance policy process that spans from broker to carrier to client and back.
How Technology is Used: The TowerIQ platform allows teams to operationalize critical customer experiences. Clients, brokers, and carriers can leverage a single, simplified, digital platform and set of role based interfaces that improve data quality, reliability, and streamline communications. The platform encompasses a broker portal, a carrier portal, and a client portal.
Why it Matters: The platform helps reduce the time needed for brokers to check policies down to minutes versus hours of manually inputting and combining data from pdfs and spreadsheets. This also speeds the ability to create a quote from 2-3x vs traditional legacy systems with automated form filling capabilities. It also creates a significant increase in the ability to underwrite business via automation.