Episode 20 – Nick Thomas: Finicity’s Journey from Personal Finance App to $985M Acquisition for their Open Banking Platform

Episode 20: Nick Thomas - Finicity’s Journey from Personal Finance App to $985M Acquisition for their Open Banking Platform

In this episode, we talk with Nick Thomas, cofounder of Finicity, which was acquired by Mastercard, where Nick went on to be the EVP of Global Open Finance Innovation. Nick has a fascinating career that has paralleled digital identity for a long time, as a cofounder of Bluetooth and FDX, the major open banking standards body in the US. These are both organizations that brought an industry together around common standards to grow the market far bigger for everyone involved—and we talk lessons learned and how this applies to identity.

Nick shares a deep look into Finicity’s story starting as a consumer application and eventually becoming a major data aggregator. Then we dive into Finicity’s journey disrupting themselves by pushing into open banking. We explore the work Finicity did with verifiable credentials as an issuer, and the big challenge that prevented them from rolling it out. You’ll appreciate all of his takes on the parallels between fintech and IDtech

To learn more about Nick you can find him on LinkedIn. Listen to the full episode on Apple podcastsSpotify or find all ways to listen at trinsic.id/podcast.

Video timestamps from Nick Thomas's interview

You can watch the full video interview on our YouTube channel, or skip to the timestamps below to find the sections that are most interesting to you.  

2:41 – How Nick became a co-founder of Bluetooth

3:54 – The idea for Finicity as a new kind of mobile budgeting application

6:00 – Finding product market fit for their banking connectivity service

7:30 – The origins of the term “open banking”

8:54 – The Bluetooth model of creating industry standards

10:18 – The origins of FDX as a financial industry standards body

13:25 – How Nick thinks about disrupting your own business model to find the next innovation

17:32 – Nick’s first exposure to self sovereign identity and verifiable credentials

19:09 – Finicity’s vision to be an issuer of digital credentials

20:29 – The biggest problem Nick sees with the digital identity space

24:10 – Nick’s thoughts on how government and industry collaborate on digital ID

29:20 – The missed opportunity for digital identity to standardize early on

33:47 – Nick’s vision for the future of identity

36:00 – Final thoughts from Nick and his plug for Utah

How to get in touch

Most people listen to the Future of Identity on Apple or Spotify. Our podcast is also now available as a video interview on YouTube. You can find all ways to listen at trinsic.id/podcast

This year, we’re launching a weekly newsletter to highlight the biggest news and developments from the IDtech industry. To sign up for the newsletter, you can input your email directly into the form below. 

As always, you can reach out to our host, Riley Hughes, on X (@rileyphughes) or LinkedIn. We love hearing from listeners! See you again in two weeks.

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