Validate A Fintech Startup Idea

25th March 2020 in Portfolio

Who Was This Built For?

Augustus is a software company which helps businesses improve their cashflow. I spent 3 months building this company in Q4 2019.

What Did We Build?

Augustus landing page

This landing page was launched after some early user validation to test interest. It got 50 signups in 2 weeks.

Later on, I also built a simple app for micro and small businesses to track their receivables. The plan was to add automatic payment reminders and credit limits for each of their customers.

Augustus React Web App

Why Did We Build It?

Poor cashflow management is the top reason businesses fail. Though some turn to financing, Augustus aimed to solve this problem by doing 2 things:

  1. Automate their accounts receivables process
  2. Improve their collections through automated reminders

Why? Because in Asia Pacific, 72% of B2B sales are made on credit.

Most of this isn't paid on time and 85% of businesses experience late payments while 30% of total receivable volume is an average of 2 weeks late.

Atradius Payment Practice Barometer 2019 

How Did We Build It?

The idea was sparked by browsing the top feature requests on Xero. Setting credit limits was 3rd on the list and complaints had dated back to 7 years ago!

I then scraped the entire community forum searching for customers that had faced a similar problem but phrased it differently.

Xero Community Top Feature Requests

This quickly led to keyword research, a landing page, and interviews with users that signed up.

In parallel, I kicked off prototyping on Figma and basic web development on React.

Wireframes in Figma

What Changed?

A lot happened within the 3 months of starting the project.

First, Xero themselves began working on it just a month after I looked into the opportunity.

Xero Community Response to Credit Limits

At the beginning of February, both Xero and MYOB, highly popular small business accounting software companies, announced their plans to provide invoice financing.

The conversations I was having with potential customers shifted from here. Most lost interest in working with me and I decided to kill the project to pursue other opportunities.

What Did I Learn?

On skillsets, it was certainly great learning for me specifically in going 0 to 1.

From marketing, sales, and product discovery to React web development, I had extended the breadth and depth of my starting up toolkit.

More importantly, I also learned that this is the type of work I enjoy most, whether its part of an established company or a new one!

Keen To Learn More?

This portfolio entry was meant to give a quick introduction to this project.

If you are curious about the product strategy, business model, and more, you can drop me a message below๐Ÿ‘‡