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Build fintech products, faster.

A key advantage to developers¬†using Dwolla’s white label¬†APIs is that they get their businesses to market faster.

There are other advantages to big established businesses but this article has precisely nothing to do with that.

Very plainly speaking…

Ease of access for developers with a strong market need means more experiments will be built. More experiments being built means a higher probability of one of them taking off. When one of them does, everyone wins.

Not all experiments work, so in order to find ones that do, we need to make it as easy as possible for experiments to take place.

Experiments really mean: new businesses or business ideas.

Dwolla has made it really easy for companies to build new ideas and get into market with a infrastructure that leverages bank transfers and moves money for free.

Aside from the free transactions part of that, here is what excites me about what I see happening on a daily basis.

When I got started building Dwolla, it took significant time and investment to get it off the ground and it cost me my life savings. Generally speaking:

  • What is cost me:¬†2 years
  • Team of: 2
  • Cost pre-market: ~$80K

Let’s assume that time is worth $20 dollars an hour at 40 hours a week, which is a lot less time than any of us would put into launching a company.

Call it ~$40K per year, per person. Cost of ~$80K if you really carefully manage the money. It’s easy to spend a lot more.

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It cost me a lot.

It doesn’t cost new companies getting into the market anywhere near that. Continue Reading

Case Studies

The Dwolla team has put together some nice case studies about how our technology is being used by our customers. They’ve done a really nice job pulling together a clear narrative with a beautiful design.



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Sacred Moments

Life is full of weird and fleeting experiences. Most of which will be forgotten because the memory isn’t important enough to be called upon. It’s unfortunate, yet true, that most of life is comprised of things that may¬†influence you but are mostly forgettable because the experience is insignificant and truly unimportant.

Thankfully, there are also experiences in life which are serendipitous and completely unforgettable. We all have these and they are rarely calculated.¬†I feel fortunate because I think one of the reasons I’m optimistic about the world¬†is that I have had far more positive serendipitous experiences to draw from than negative. I know¬†the world is far better than worse and people are far better than bad as a result.

This week has given me the opportunity to appreciate a different type of moment. Continue Reading

A perfect memory

I’ve been talking about this a lot privately lately.

Now that we have technology that operates by default in a way where those¬†computers retain a¬†perfect memory that can’t be edited, forever,¬†what will we do with it?

There is a seemingly endless amount of moral and ethical questions that come from this conversation. Continue Reading

The Power of Default

I served with a board member a few years back who said something that I’m¬†reminded of on a regular basis.

Never underestimate the power of the default setting.

What he meant by that wasn’t always user-centric. At least I don’t think so.

This is an interesting statement when put into the context of how powerful default providers are in new FinTech software.
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Managing bank transfer risk

If you’ve followed any of my work for the last few years it probably won’t come as a surprise to you that I believe real-time payments are going to be responsible for seismic risk reduction in the financial system.

Much to my own frustration real-time payments aren’t everywhere, yet.

So what do we do in the meantime? We take existing technology and use it to solve some problems for customers today.

Dwolla released a new endpoint today for developers which provides the ability to query bank account balances. It provides a solution to a number of the concerns we hear.

Some of them look like this:

I don’t want the actual money. I just want to know they actually have the money if we need it.

– or –¬† Continue Reading

Connecting a Blockchain to the Establishment

When I say establishment, a few examples that could fit are:

  • Financial Institutions. Banks and credit unions.
  • Governments. State¬†and Federal.
  • Regulated exchanges.
  • Media companies.

Now that we’ve got that out of the way, I’d like to share what is an obvious overlap between blockchain based technologies that are recording asset transfers in a open ledger and large established organizations.

I’ve written in the past about when the appropriate time is to use various database types like blockchains but a recent Coindesk¬†article made me feel like I should probably write some more.

While this is all going to be really obvious to a group of people, it’s something that the market seems to be coming around to: the practical applications of blockchains and how to connect them to the rest of the world and in existing business processes.

This entry is very much a stream of thought so if you find an error in this blog please don’t hesitate¬†to let me know¬†and I’ll get it corrected.

I’ve oversimplified a number of the details to make this blog easier to read. I’m well aware of that so please don’t take this is a copy / paste solution. It is not.

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