When we discuss financial technology (fintech) companies, conversations typically are focused on the rise of the digital world to replace the need for physical functions. Examples include online banking, the end of physical room stock exchanges and raising capital via roadshows moving to YouTube videos and crowdfunding platforms. But, as much as our lives are going digital, there are still plenty of places where the physical world of finance is part of our life.
Aiming to disrupt the need for security guards at bank branches and other physical locations is Octopus, and their cloud-based security management system. Providing security solutions, the firm operates physical security devices that are connected to mobile and web-based apps for users to monitor remote locations. Also included are features that connect with local authorities to alert them in case of break-ins and theft. Within the financial sector, Octopus’s solution is used by numerous bank branches, where their service is able to limit the need of on-location security guards.
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Receiving funding to boost their international growth, Octopus announced that it has closed a $2.5 million round with capital from Singulariteam. The financing comes from Singulariteam’s second fund, which was founded with $100 million from Chinese internet firms, Tencent Holdings and Renren. According to Octopus, the firm’s current customers in its home base of Israel include Visa (CAL), ICL and Coca-Cola.
In regards to their offering being used by banks, Tal Bar Or, CEO of Octopus explained to Finance Magnates, “The solution we offered to the banks was to replace [bank security guards] with 25 mobile armed special forces, riding on motorcycles, which have a 4 minutes response time from any branch/office in case of an emergency. This is done with the technology of the Octopus system. This solution not only offered an effective response team but also saved millions by replacing hundreds of in effective guards with 25 teams of 2 people riding the motorcycles.”
Bar Or added, “In addition we offer bank branch managers and certain employees, a mobile phone distress signal application for signaling in case of emergency. The application allows the security officers and the security service company to receive these distress signals, open a communication channel to listen to what’s occurring in the bank and to speak to the employee in an emergency.” According to Bar Or, the company’s solutions is currently being used by “100’s of bank branches in Israel”, with an international rollout currently taking place in Zambia.