Shanghai Evans Investment Management Limited

ONDATO Case Study: UAB deVere E-Money

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ONDATO provides a complete compliance management suite in regard to KYC procedures.  Each month we will illustrate via a case study how a company has used the ONDATO offering in their business.  This month we will examine the case of UAB deVere E-Money (‘DEV’), based in the EU, which holds an electronic money institution operating license.

Script of Interview

Interviewee                                     Mr. Povilas Steikunas, (PS)

Position                                          Head of Partnerships

Company name                             Ondato

Company website:              

Case study company:                   UAB deVere E-Money (‘DEV’)

Company website:              

Interviewer                                     John D. Evans, CFA (JE)

Interview conducted on              10 February 2022

About DEV

JE Good afternoon to the viewers of SEIML Ventures and this latest episode with Mr. Povilas Steikunis, the head of partnerships at Ondato.  Just as background Ondato provides a complete Compliance Management Suite in regard to KYC (know your client) procedures. Each month we will illustrate via a case study how a company has used the Ondato offering in its business. This month, we will examine the case of UAE deVere E-Money based in the EU, which holds an electronic money institution operating license. So, with that as an introduction, good afternoon Povilas. Nice to have you here.

PS Good afternoon John, really nice to be here.

JE Okay, let’s kick things off. And you start off by giving a brief overview of the services of DEV and the geographic area it operates in. ‘DEV’ being the abbreviation we’re going to use for deVere E-Money.

PS Sure, John. So, DEV is obviously our client it is electronic money institution established, based in Lithuania.  It is authorized to issue and conduct electronic money activities. Since it holds Bank of Lithuania, the central regulator, license the main fields of electronic commercial activities of the company relies towards financial activities, electronic money institution activities, other monetary intermediation that their financial service activities, other credit granting activities, auxiliary to financial services and leasing services so it’s quiet really diversified.

JE Okay. So, with that is background, who are the typical customers of DEV individuals, institutions?

PS Well, their services are aimed towards, expats or homeowners with overseas property, jet setters and actually travelers who travel either for leisure or with work. So, anyone who needs to transfer between different currencies, they help they support an exchanging plus show the hidden fees. So, it’s very useful for those who may have a need for multiple currencies, which are very important, you know, in in this globalized world.

JE Okay, so does DEV have any related entities or is it even part of a larger financial group?

PS Well, obviously, DEV is a big group. So, the in Lithuania, that holds electronic money institution license, they are part of 97 different entities in this group. And their branches are established globally. So, and the whole group, they provide the broad range of financial services including wealth management advice, investment, banking, retailer banking, asset management and fintech apps. So, and you can find their branches actually, in in all the continents, from Europe to Asia, North America, South America, even Australia.  And their main headquarters are in the UAE.

JE Okay. Very interesting a huge group. So, with that, what is the relationship I see mentioned between the group and MasterCard?

PS Yes, obviously since DEV holds electronic money institution license and it is since it’s authorized by the Bank of Lithuania to conduct electronic money service activities, they operate under the license issued by MasterCard. Why is that because DEV offers its clients, Mastercards to obviously to perform the transactions.

The risks faced by DEV

JE Very interesting. Okay, so let’s change a little bit towards the risks and what are the primary risks conceptually, that the DEV faces in this business?

PS Well, obviously, you know, when we talk about the financial sector in general, it faces really big fraud risk in general. So, in this case, we can talk about, about fake account opening about money laundering of activities, about fake transactions, and so on. So, these, these are the primary risks that Ondato takes as a big responsibility and help the DEV to many the mitigate any, any fraud related risk.

JE OK, very interesting. So, I guess any big financial institution operating internationally, it’s almost systematic, these risks of fraud, anti-money laundering, etc. And so, they’re, they’re facing the same risk the whole industry is and applies to everyone.

PS Yeah.

The solution proposed by Ondato

JE Okay. So then, looking more specifically, when did DEV approach Ondato and what specific solutions of Ondato was it looking for?

PS Guess we were really in the right time for DEV and, of course, the collaboration kicked in when company DEV started growing here in Lithuania, and they are having all these risks into the consideration, you know, it was important for them to find a good partner, you know, that could grow together with them. So, our initial meetings started on June last year, in 2021. And it was also important, you know, that Ondato would help DEV, not only from this from the fraud perspective, you know, mitigating the fraud, but also meeting central regulatory requirements, which, in fact, I could brag a little bit we are good at, because we work with the different electronic money institutions and, and support that. So, the initial conversations were very small, because DEV clearly knew what they want. And secondly, they were both hands on, on meeting the regulatory requirement evaluation sheets, which actually was quite small, because we are talking about one and a half months, from the request from the central regulation to all the documents, the link and approval from the Bank of Lithuania. So, this was one of the fastest actual experiences that I have ever had.

JE Okay, that’s interesting. So, you, you’ve talked about the solutions in conceptual terms. Let’s talk about the details of the solution proposed by Ondato and describe the actual solutions. I have your brochure and the viewers will see some of the slides, but the actual solutions that DEV is using from Ondato right now.

PS So where are we right? Right? When I mentioned that they have, they clearly know what they really need, their focus was towards remote client onboarding, or in other words, remote client acquisition. So, it’s inevitable piece for them, as well as other electronic money institutions to onboard customers remotely in a secure, efficient and compliant way. And that’s where we help DEV with identity verification. And of course, in order to ensure that security and fraud, you know, we do multiple background checks. So, meaning that every single customer that onboard on the DEV platform, they are actually being screened by Ondato’s system. And we look into different aspects to ensure that these activities or these identities are not fraudulent. Right. So that’s that that’s what we what we offer for them. And obviously, we expand this not only towards singular systems, but enable this for web for mobile apps, which I believe, you know, we could discuss also.

JE Okay, that’s interesting. And we’ll, we’ll show a few slides that illustrate your solutions in a little bit more technical matter, it’s quite interesting to observe. Okay, now, you, you talked previously about when the first discussions started, and we’ve talked about the solution. So, give us sort of an overview of the implementation. When did you first start? You mentioned that on the solution, when was it completed? How long does this process take? And when did they actually start first using your completed solution?


PS So, if we talk about the end of June, when they approached us, in the, from the initial discussions, it was very smooth, it was very fast. Just because we were able to offer what exactly they need, we were able to, to agree on the requirements, almost right away, almost in two weeks.  Then what I mentioned that from the central regulators, there were specific requirements that would determine that Ondato is capable of providing a compliant solution to the customer and mitigate any fraud related risks. From that moment, we took multiple pieces hand in hand, that’s what made us concentrate right away on the integration piece without waiting for anything, right. So, in two months, from the initial conversation on August, we already had an official approval from the Bank of Lithuania, that services are compliant and we can move forward.  Then, of course, we signed the service contract right away, and jumped into the integration steps on the concrete requirements, and so on. So that’s what how we were able to set the system almost from scratch and launch it already on for the beginning of December. So, on the beginning of December, they will already in the production,

JE So, they’ve been going for about two months now. December 2021. Okay, now, let’s, let’s not get into too much technical detail. But I’m always interested when a technical solution is provided by one party to another. So, did your solution require DEV to make any major systems changes on its side? How did the integration go?

PS I would say integration, obviously, is something that, that that that went really smooth when we talk, you know, about multiple integrations, because besides standard service, they integrate their solution and adapt their systems, you know, for the web API, also the solution for their App, where we provide the software development kit for them, having all of this in mind, you know, that helps them to integrate smoothly the solution and at the same time, also improve our solutions towards helping them, assisting them and making it as fast as possible. Obviously, we are very keen on moving forward the from the technical perspective.

JE Okay, so that gets us to our last point. And I know you it’s only been up and running two months, but how has the initial experience been? And what do you see in the future? Are there more potential solutions that Ondato may provide to DEV?

PS Well, perhaps to answer this question, the best would be to look a little bit on what we have. So, we have just started literally two months ago and both parties are assessing the relationship. And what we witnessed after the first month volumes are up 500%. So, we will likely explore additional cooperation in the future that might be another service Ondato. So, the initial need is to actually ensure that DEV would be able to mitigate any growth-related risks because we have to understand that higher customer base also means big responsibility, and it also means increased potential fraud increase in the future, right? So that’s where Ondato has the capability to actually help mitigate those growth-related risks. So that, you know, company could grow, and compliance would not be an obstacle.

JE Okay, I’m going to ask a follow up question which we didn’t discuss in advance, but I think it falls out of what you’ve just said. I mean, if the business is growing so quickly, 500% month over month, is there any sort of existing capacity limitations in what you can provide to DEV? Or is your solution scalable, to any degree?

PS So, then the later piece, because obviously, our solutions are fully scalable, and since we, as one said, we’re like IKEA, just in the compliance, are able to actually adapt this, according to the customer. So, where I already can foresee the potential from the monitoring perspective, in order to help the compliance people, but obviously, we always looking forward where the future will take us. And what will be the challenge, I guess, for every EMI for every financial institution, I would recommend looking in the main pain points and the problems that service providers could actually tap into. Because when we find the synergy, when the service provider is able to solve the problem, that’s where the actual cooperation occurs.

JE Okay, very interesting. So that brings us to our, the end of our first discussion, it’s very interesting. I, I know the financial industry from personal history, and I know the volume of transactions. So, this is a huge potential area that you’re moving into. So, I congratulate you on that, and your success with the initial launch of DEV. And it sounds like there’s a lot of future growth for the two of you. So, thanks for your time. Povilas.

PS Thank you, John. Thank you to our listeners. It was a pleasure.