One stop shop for managing Personal Finance

Date:   Thursday , June 09, 2011

Founded in 2008, Bangalore based Perfios offers an innovative Personal Finance Software Application that provides a 360 degree view of one’s personal finance, and helps manage personal finance in a safe and trusted environment with out much human intervention. In a candid chat with Vimali Swamy, VR Govindarajan Co-founder and CEO, Perfios talks about the company’s offerings, and future growth plans.

What does Perfios offer?
Managing one’s wealth is a daunting task faced by many, especially when in today’s cut throat environment, banks and other financial institutes are offering multiple schemes, funds and other savings plans, leaving a person fazed and confused.

With Perfios there were two specific points that we were trying to address — one is to provide a 360 degree view of personal finance and other is to help a person is to get all the related data automatically. There are several sites like Moneycontrol or Valueresearch where they provide information about equity or mutual fund if one provides all the information, but personal finance is lot more than just equity or mutual fund. Our aim is to provide a complete 360 degree view— be it one’s bank account, credit card, insurance options, loans, deposit, whatever that touches one’s personal finance should be addressed in our platform.

For example; by using Perfios one must be able to get integrated data across one’s different bank accounts, balance, interest reaped, and also advice on investments that could help one reap higher percentage of revenue.

Who all can use Perfios?
From individual users to wealth managers, all can utilize our services. In case of a wealth manager he will have to subscribe as many accounts as the number of customers he serves.

How strong is the security?
Yes, the main concern of people when they start using this system is definitely security. We have addressed this issue from the initial development stage itself. We do not take in any bank account, credit/debit card or any other financial details from any customer who creates an account with us. The only thing the person needs to give our system is a valid email id. Other than this, at the back end, we have no data about the user. Also there are a couple of ways by which we gather data and automate it.

One is the statement approval, where a user either forwards the statements to us or uploads it to our applications, following which the system automatically processes and populates your accounts. The second way is through automation. Here a first time user can provide one’s bank login id and password upon which all processes are automated. None of the private information is stored on our web server every transaction of information is highly encrypted.

Apart from this, the complete data is kept in a very secure data center. We engage external agencies such as Trust Guard who independently run as many as 37,000 tests on our website every day. Even if we fail in one test an alert is put up on the website to inform that the site is broken into. Additionally, a code review is done by Paladion Networks every six months upon which they certify the application. They also do an ongoing security audit for us.

What are some of the challenges?
The key challenge is how to monetize this service. People are still not comfortable paying for anything on the internet. The biggest challenge, according to me, is to come up with an appropriate revenue model for the Indian context.

What is the total number of customers and employees?
We are presently 20 people strong. At present we about 100,000 plus customers which include individual customers and wealth management professionals. Our focus presently is only on the Indian market. Our goal is to provide a world class product from here and focus on Indian market.

Are you planning to partner with banks?
We are already in talks with some banks. We also work in the corporate segment with various IT companies where we are provided as a value added service or employee friendly service to thier employee. The aim is to make Perfios a one stop personal finance system.