Deepak Kumar of SoulWallet tells us about a unique tool that helps clients make informed personal financial decisions.
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Deepak Kumar: We are doing well. As we all know the pandemic has changed our lives. As a family, we are able to spend more quality time together. As most people are, we too are interacting more often with family members and friends in other countries. We are awaiting our turn to get the vaccination done and are quite amazed by the way the world has come together in combating this life-changing situation.
Tell us about you, your career, how you founded SoulWallet.
Deepak Kumar: I am the co-founder of Soulwallet.com, a UAE-based personal finance aggregator. We enable consumers to make informed choices while signing up for personal finance products while driving efficiencies for banks and insurance providers. Having worked in the banking industry for 18 years, I have expertise in functions such as consumer credit, underwriting, sales & distribution, sales strategy, operations, customer service, technology, and marketing.
In the current scenario, customers take up personal finance products through the banks to which their salaries are transferred or through a bank DSA that provides a limited view of the options available. We found a significant opportunity in providing customers with the right tools to help them decide on the most suitable products customized to their needs.
We work with most of the leading financial institutions here in the UAE and assist them in their digital customer acquisitions. We offer products such as credit cards, personal loans, bank accounts currently. We are quite amazed by the support that we receive from our customers who see value in our offering. Our traffic has been consistently growing through digital channels. We are constantly evolving and working on projects that would benefit our customers.
How does SoulWallet innovate?
Deepak Kumar: We have done the heavy lifting and have developed a solution designed to empower customers and help them choose the best financial solutions for them. Our proprietary tool “Best Fit,” powered by a smart algorithm, provides meaningful recommendations that help users save money while using credit cards. Best Fit provides customers with
· Customized credit card recommendations
· Best-in-class comparison tools with high-quality content
· Saves in green dollars
Our unique feature rankings can help a customer identify the best cards among 200+options when it comes to features such as golf, cinemas, etc.,
How does the coronavirus pandemic affect your business finances?
Deepak Kumar: Interestingly, the concept of working from home for us has been in place since 2019. Being a digital startup, we have always been leveraging upon the digital capabilities, teleconferencing facilities, etc., While we saw a slight slowdown in quarter 2 of 2020 due to the pandemic, we were able to quickly leverage upon the opportunity and steer through the pandemic seamlessly.
We worked with our partners on different engagement models and incorporated process changes to support our clients’ objectives. We saw a 200% YOY growth in our revenues in 2020 compared to 2019 and a 250% growth in our customer traffic over the last two quarters of the year.
Flexibility, adaptability, foresight, and resilience are some of our strengths. We are planning to add on new products to offer to our customers in 2021.
Did you have to make difficult choices regarding human resources and what are the lessons learned?
Deepak Kumar: Human capital is a key element in shaping a business. We are totally aware of this. We are a startup with a small but extremely efficient and super excited team. Thanks to our customers and clients we have grown our team size during the period and looking at scaling further in 2021.
How did your customer relationship management evolve? Do you use any specific tools to be efficient?
Deepak Kumar: Our plans are ambitious and focused on enhancing the personal finance acquisition journey for our customers. We are constantly evolving based on customer feedback leveraging technology enablers. We provide well-researched content and detailed comparison tools aimed at making the customers’ decision-making process simpler while shopping for personal finance solutions. We strongly believe that relevant content such as the ones below is a key differentiator, and it is important to provide customers with takeaways that can enrich their lives.
Did you benefit from any government grants, and did that help keep your business afloat?
Deepak Kumar: Fortunately, our business has healthy cashflows and revenues and we did not need any such grants.
Your final thoughts?
Deepak Kumar: Nations are closed, mobility severely restricted, we are all adapting to a new reality. As they say, life goes on and we need to constantly keep exploring, learning, and challenging ourselves. This pandemic, like many others previously, will pass too. In the end, a healthy and positive mindset is the key, and we will sail through this together as a society. I wish you all good health and abundant joy in 2021. Final tip – stay safe and get the vaccine!
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