AIO – Verified Financial Identity, a Fintech company based in Tel Aviv, and Finastra, today announced that they have been awarded a USD $1 million grant from the Board of Governors of the Israel-U.S. Binational Industrial Research and Development (BIRD) Foundation for the co-development of a digital customer onboarding solution. Developed by AIO and available on Finastra's FusionFabric.cloud open developer platform and app marketplace, the solution automates the process of establishing the financial identity of a loan applicant in order to meet Know Your Customer (KYC)/Know Your Business (KYB) regulations.The project received the largest available grant through the BIRD Foundation following a thorough review by BIRD-appointed evaluators from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) of the U.S. Department of Commerce and the Israel Innovation Authority. Driving factors that led to the grant being awarded to AIO and Finastra include the creation of an innovative solution that solves real-world problems and the ease with which financial institutions can leverage that technology."It is an honor to be recognized by the BIRD Foundation for a solution that will fundamentally change how financial institutions assess loan applications, bringing tremendous efficiency to what is often an inefficient process," says Yoram Bechler, Co-founder and CEO at AIO. "In the world of COVID-19 there is also heightened demand and urgency for business loans. Our solution enables financial institutions to try to meet that demand, but also make lending decisions that are compliant, timely and cost-efficient. Working with Finastra, and making our solution available on its FusionFabric.cloud platform, we are able to reach more financial institutions, giving them the ability to leverage our customer-friendly mobile and web platform to meet KYC/KYB requirements and assess risk in just a few clicks."Current manual processes related to loan origination can be costly and time consuming. AIO's solution, which integrates with Finastra's Total Lending suite, speeds up customer onboarding by up to 80% and saves costs by securely automating the collection and verification of digital financial documents. Patented AIO technology maintains data collection with the customer, automatically verifying digital documents. These are then supplied digitally to the financial institution through Finastra's Total Lending."This grant from the BIRD Foundation lends credence to a compelling solution, and also to our vision for open collaboration in financial services," said Mike Salfity, Global Head of Finastra Product Strategy and Head of North America Community Markets, Finastra. "We recognize the exciting offerings coming out of startups like AIO, and are committed to providing access to that innovation through FusionFabric.cloud. At the same time, we are able to extend the fintech's reach into the banking ecosystem. With this generous grant, AIO and Finastra will be able to better deliver an even more robust and impactful solution."The BIRD Foundation promotes collaborations between U.S. and Israeli companies in various technological fields for the purpose of joint product development. In addition to providing grants for approved projects, the Foundation assists by working with companies to identify potential strategic partners and facilitate introductions."We are proud to support the project between AIO and Finastra to improve loan origination and reduce time and costs to both loan applicants and financial institutions," said Dr. Eitan Yudilevich, Executive Director of the BIRD Foundation. "The BIRD Foundation will continue to support projects which contain high level of innovation that address present needs."Several large multinational banks in the U.S. and Europe are currently piloting AIO's financial identity verification solution, with more expected to roll out in the coming months.