Finexkap: From Raw Data to Production, 7x Faster

Finexkap’s data team packs a big punch, leveraging Dataiku to build data projects (using both integrated notebooks and visual recipes), automate processes, and push to production 7x faster.

Finexkap logo

With just a three-person data team but solid ambition to tap the market for extended payment terms and working capital, Finexkap Group envisions data science and machine learning as a frictionless part of their product and organizational processes. We sat down with Lead Data Scientist Adrien Basso-Blandin and Data Scientist Hayet Bezzeghoud at Finexkap to talk about the projects they’re working on and how Dataiku helps them achieve their goals.

About Finexkap:

  • Founded in 2012, leading fintech providing digital solutions for B2B operators, marketplaces, and e-commerce in western Europe.
  • Two cutting-edge B2B IT modules: instant payment and extended payment terms.
  • 400M€ financed for 3,500 SMEs + several major partnerships with B2B top-tier players such as METRO Group (food wholesale distribution).
  • Finexkap Group is composed of two companies: Finexkap in charge of IT development/ R&D and Finexkap AM, a regulated AIFM company in charge of refinancing.
  • Proprietary back-office and data science capacities providing fully automated credit decisions.

Background

Before Dataiku, it was a long and painful process for the Finexkap data science team to both build data projects and to put them into production — a challenge that many small and medium businesses (SMB) still face today. The Finexkap data science team, made up of three data scientists, was primarily using Python in notebooks and a bit of C# to automate processes, but they didn’t have any visual tools for building data pipelines or to conduct on-the-fly data analysis.

As is the case with many small teams, this method was scrappy, yet ultimately functional. However, it was also extremely tedious, and in the long run — especially with the company’s growth and plans for future products, expansions, etc. — they realized it was not sustainable.

The Project

In July 2020, Finexkap launched Finexpay, a new service that provides— among other things —  a new machine learning-based service that helps B2B e-commerce or marketplace operators (such as METRO FRANCE) offer their clients longer payment terms in order to increase their key performance indicators (conversion rate, average basket, user experience, etc.) The extended payment terms module adds up to 90 days on top of existing terms and is based on a client proprietary score.

In order to be more precise, Finexkap built instantaneous client scoring, which allows the clients to define their refer limit according to parameters that go beyond financial stability. For example, they can automatically take into account phenomena impacting entire areas of activity, like the current global health crisis. 

The Finexpay client score is generated by Dataiku, from which the team built the entire project end-to-end. The team chose Dataiku for its:

  • User-friendly interface
  • Easy data exploration and analysis capabilities
  • Flexibility, including the capacity to extend core capacity with Dataiku Plugins (both pre-built and custom-developed)
  • Integrated notebooks connected directly to datasets
  • Visual recipes, which even though the team is technical, save a lot of development time
  • Ability to facilitate quick and easy project deployment to production

Results

From connecting to various data sources to pushing models to production, the team at Finexkap is seven times more efficient with Dataiku than they were using a notebooks-only approach:

Step Old Process  New Process Leveraging Dataiku DSS
Ingestion 2 days, including the process to connect to Neo4j (requires an intermediate format + 1 extra day to make these patches for each source). From a few minutes to hours
Data wrangling 1 day A few minutes
Release to production 2 days to format the code on the previous system.  One click + 2 minutes of remapping

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