9Spokes International Ltd (ASX:9SP) has signed a two-year contract renewal with Bank of New Zealand (BNZ), with a further two-year right of renewal following a successful first term, which introduced several innovative banking tools to the bank’s SMB customers.
The company will continue to provide MyBusiness Live, BNZ’s white-label 9Spokes platform, which helps small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) track performance through data-derived insights.
It also incorporates 9Spokes Engage, 9Spokes’ in-life marketing program and Content Hub, plus Connect, 9Spokes’ revenue-generating app marketplace.
The renewal comes after the company enjoyed a strong September quarter, signing contracts with Visa USA Inc and Fundation Group LLC.
Developing new digital services
The contract scope extends to the development of new digital services, including Monitor for bankers, a Microsoft Teams supported app which gives bankers a quick overview of a business’ information, including business entity data from the company’s office.
9Spokes co-founder and chief executive Adrian Grant said: “BNZ is always open to new ideas and approaches and has enabled us to trial features and test them with their customers and bankers.”
“Together, 9Spokes and BNZ have developed and implemented valuable services to enhance SMB users’ experiences.
“BNZ was the first of our banking partners to migrate to V2 and was our launch partner for 9Spokes Engage, including the BNZ Content Hub, a rich repository of knowledge and resources for small businesses.
“[The contract renewal] also allows us to continue to work with the bank to develop and introduce leading-edge banking tools, such as Monitor for bankers.”
MyBusiness Live, Engage and Content Hub
The bank’s two-year focus with 9Spokes is to continue to introduce new features and capability to MyBusiness Live, which in the short-term means more apps connected to the platform, more access to lending services, and the ability for clients to utilise and buy apps they don’t currently have through 9Spokes Connect.
BNZ general manager growth and performance Karna Luke said: “We’re providing an ecosystem that realises SMBs’ shift from people, to digital, to digital people, and at the same time, increasing productivity.
“We’re committed to continuing to position BNZ at the forefront of this transformation.
“Our MyBusiness Live platform and the work we’re undertaking with 9Spokes is central to this.
“With the addition of initiatives such as Engage and Content Hub, we are delivering more lending services and support to customers.
“We are reaching and engaging our SMB customers in new, value-added ways, validating the need for a knowledge-base for businesses.”
Visa contract signed
During the September quarter the company entered a five-year global strategic partnership with Visa, where Visa will resell the 9Spokes solution to its clients and their small business customers.
Grant said: “The signing of our contract with Visa — a milestone that the company has long worked towards — is highly significant.
“Our teams are now actively working together on our go-to-market strategy, but more importantly, actively building our pipeline.
“Already, the company is seeing a level and quality of engagement that would be hard to achieve without the benefit of this partnership.”
On August 18, 9Spokes signed a distribution partner agreement with Fundation Group LLC, a US-based, SMB digital lending platform which currently services a broad cross-section of banks in the US and has deep relationships in the US banking sector.
This agreement will see the parties coordinate business development to introduce the 9Spokes platform to Fundation’s bank partners.
Grant said: “This quarter, we also entered a partnership with Fundation.
“A strategic collaboration on multiple levels, it further enhances our momentum and connects us with an innovative, US-based tech-leader within the SMB sector with niche relationships in finance.”
Grant said: “The last period has been focused on putting in place strong partnerships.
“With partnerships in place, we are seeing strong interest in our platform and building a solid pipeline.
“During our next phase, we will be implementing more ambitious enhancements across our platform, such as core features to benefit business users.
“And, as we monetise the platform, we will detail the app partnerships being developed.
“The challenges of COVID-19 are shining a light on the need for business data such as that provided by our platform.
“This fact gives us confidence in our business model.”