In Founder Focus we introduce entrepreneurs and change-makers working on innovative startups, social enterprises and SME’s around Aotearoa New Zealand.

At a glance

Founder: Dermot Butterfield

Business: Wych

Founded: 2020

HQ: Auckland

Can you tell us a bit about your business?

Putting consumers in control of their own data is now a commercial and regulatory imperative. Australia already has a Consumer Data Right and New Zealand will follow this year. Some of the use cases for ‘Open Data’ include reducing the time it takes to apply for a home loan from days to minutes, enabling shoppers to pay for things directly from their bank accounts, and avoiding missed payments through nudges when bills are due.

At Wych, our mission is to provide fast, no code, secure access to customer data. Wych is a global open data platform currently operating in Australia and New Zealand. We help organisations who want to use customer data so they can create and deliver better products and services for their customers.

Currently we work with banks, non-bank lenders, super funds, credit card providers, credit bureau and financial or wealth advisors. We will shortly expand to include telcos and energy providers and eventually any organisation that wants to use their customer’s data with permission.

The Wych platform delivers a fast, easy all-in-one solution enabling businesses to jump right into Open Data even if they have limited internal capacity. Depending on their needs, we provide basic data transfer, data enrichment, data insights, a white-label consumer app, payments capabilities and more – all leveraging Wych’s accreditation, data security and global infrastructure.

What’s the backstory for your business idea?

I spent ten years building and scaling large data infrastructure platforms for various companies. During that time I saw firsthand how resource and capital intensive it is to create a customised solution – which meant larger organisations spent too much time and money and smaller organisations struggled to be competitive. The ultimate loser is the customer, who can’t benefit from better choices – so I was determined to build a solution that made it easier for everyone.

Wych is built to serve a global market from day one, without the need for big technology budgets, large engineering teams and legal or compliance experts. Wych is a simple no code solution with a single API that is fast and easy to implement, by any sized organisation, anywhere in the world.

What programmes, learning or mentoring, or resources have been of assistance so far?

One of the best programs I have come across is Export Essentials, a free course from New Zealand Trade and Enterprise run by Paul Sinclair that explains what you need to know and do to grow your business internationally. It combines best-practice knowledge, quick exercises, and practical resources you can start using in your business today to stay on top of everything. This gave amazing insights into being a software exporter operating from NZ.

The best move we made was establishing an advisory board as it allowed us to extend the amount of experience in the business with top class industry professionals.

We’ve taken part in business/technology accelerators and other incubator style programs but found these to be expensive, time consuming and in the end more tailored to building the brand of those providing the service than providing value to the participating startups.

The most sensible thing we have learned is about maintaining a balance of leadership skills, with the right mix of business, marketing and technology leadership, and to avoid duplication of skills in the early days.


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