Philippine startup Investa recently launched an innovative investment platform built on Microsoft Azure to provide Filipinos inclusive access to low-cost investment opportunities and financial benefits.
“We started Investa with the aim to empower Filipinos to achieve financial freedom,” said Airwyn Tin, co-founder and chief technology officer of Investa, a finalist in the 2020 Emerge X Startup Competition.
In recent years, more Filipinos have been investing in the stock market with the rise of financial technology and online trading platforms. Despite this increase, only 1.27 percent of Filipinos invest in equities partly because of insufficient financial awareness and education.
“Investing in the stock market is a viable way to augment income towards financial security and success, but most people lack the knowledge and skills needed in stock trading. There is also a lack of user-friendly and affordable investment platforms, which ultimately led us to build our own,” noted Tin.
“Investa aimed to address these gaps by providing a wide array of learning resources, tools, and analytics. And now, the new Investa app has evolved into the first investment platform designed for every Filipino.”
In its initial deployment, Investa was a learning tool, giving users access to investment strategies, insights, and a virtual trading platform to simulate the experience of buying and selling stocks without actual financial risks. The platform provides updates on publicly listed companies and facilitates a community of traders where members can share news and insights.
Today, Investa has over 1 million users, averaging 20 million views per month, and has evolved into a full-fledged investment platform catering to all Filipinos.
“With the new Investa app, anyone can invest in the best-performing mutual funds in the country and even abroad, even with minimal funds. People can do so according to their risk profiles and financial goals. Whether they be conservative investors or high risk-takers, they can choose the funds that suit their lifestyle,” said Tin.
Investa partnered with Microsoft to create a scalable and secure platform. The startup joined Microsoft's regional Emerge X competition held at the Philippine Startup Week last year and was chosen as a finalist, which kickstarted a year-long mentorship program with Microsoft for Startups.
Microsoft also helped Investa set up its cloud infrastructure on Microsoft Azure, allowing the platform to handle more users and workloads without compromising speed or performance, even during peak usage.
Investa also utilizes Azure DevOps and Azure Application Insights to help detect errors in advance, so the platform gets fixed immediately. To ensure data security, Investa harnesses a wide array of Microsoft Azure's security options, which are configurable and can be customized based on their specific security requirements. Microsoft Azure's offering for financial services is also designed to enhance risk management and counter fraud.
“Awareness and literacy are critical to any positive financial outlook. Investa's easy-to-use platform enables Filipinos to learn how to invest their money in a smart way. Moreover, as more individual investors participate in the stock market, they help new and established enterprises raise capital to open new business opportunities, accelerating the country's economic recovery,” said Abid Zaidi, chief marketing and operations officer at Microsoft Philippines.
“We will continuously support the growth of Investa so that more people can have these opportunities fully and inclusively,” added Zaidi.
The app is now in beta phase with ongoing registration through http://invs.st/NewInvestaApp for early access.