A Rewards Platform for SMEs Cinches Polytechnic Students Victory in MAS Hackathon

A Rewards Platform for SMEs Cinches Polytechnic Students Victory in MAS Hackathon

by August 14, 2018

The Monetary Authority of Singapore, together with five local polytechnics and 12 industry partners came together to hold the inaugural PolyFinTech 100 API Hackathon.

The hackathon which started on the 2nd of June drew in close to 130 participants, who in teams of 5-6 each, turned their ideas into proof-of-concept solutions to prove how financial services can be incorporated into users’ daily lives.

Some of the solutions include banking applications for the visually impaired, a mobile application for enabling efficient GST refunds for tourists, and e-payment services in hawker centres.

And the team that stood above the rest to win the trophy came from Ngee Ann Polytechnic (NP), the creators of UniPoints.

SMEs Deserve a Scalable Rewards System Too

PolyFinTech 100 API Hackathon - ngee ann polytechnic mas hackathon singapore unipoints

Excerpt of the winning team’s presentation.

UniPoints is a CRM and rewards platform tailored for SMEs, so that they, like big corporations, are also able to scale their rewards systems to drive more loyal customers. Some communities that UniPoints aims to touch include Robertson Quay, Haji Lane, Bugis Street and Cheong Chin Nam Road.

To get the ball rolling, the team behind UniPoints spoke to local business owners and looked into existing research to confirm that SMEs in Singapore, said to make up 99% of enterprises in the nation, were losing out because they do not have the capacity to scale their rewards or loyalty systems.

So UniPoints comes into the picture by encouraging SMEs located nearby to work together by pooling their rewards into one system in hopes of increasing their odds of acquiring more customers.

UniPoints also hopes to become the intermediary between these crucial SMEs and the banks that have taken a huge interest in them for any collaborations.

How UniPoints plans to do this is by allowing all rewards points earned by one customer, either through any purchases through a local SME or through credit cards to be converted into points on their system. By streamlining all of these points onto one platform, users are now able to use their underutilised points while SMEs and banks get higher customer reach and are able to work together in tandem to grow the overall ecosystem.

UniPoints will also be providing analytics of user behaviours to merchants and banks which could be applied to business planning.

The Ngee Ann Polytechnic team received cash prizes up to S$3,500 and an opportunity to present their solutions at the Singapore FinTech Festival 2018 to be held in from 12th of November to 16th of November 2018.

From now until the Singapore Fintech Festival, they will receive mentorship from the hackathon’s industry partners like Amazon Web Services, Citibank, DBS Bank, PayPal, FinLab, and a few others.

Featured Image Credit: MAS