Issue 8 2023

10 | Acquisition International, Issue 8 2023 Haniza Yon: Transforming Financing Using AI and Advanced Analytics assionate about fairness and high standards in testing, Haniza is an experienced data scientist with a long-standing interest in psychometrics. In 2005, she obtained her PhD in Measurement and Quantitative Methods from Michigan State University. Having worked for a number of internationally renowned institutions, she has led a fulfilling career in psychometrics over the last 25 years. During this time, she is proud to have founded Malaysia’s first psychometric lab at MIMOS Bhd and started the Malaysian Psychometrics Association, of which she is still president. In 2015, Haniza became involved in finance when she discovered that psychometric data was being used to assess creditworthiness in other countries. The credit scoring industry had recently been disrupted by the introduction of novel data collection methods for assessing creditworthiness. Rather than looking at credit history alone, alternative credit scoring analyses other factors like mobile phone usage and psychometric data to determine the likelihood that an individual will repay their loans. With a PhD in measurement and quantitative methods and plenty of experience under her belt, Haniza felt she was qualified to bring an alternative credit scoring system to Malaysia. Having developed a model for assessing individual integrity in the workplace, she extended her research to encompass creditworthiness assessments for businesses. She went on to spend several years studying the repayment behaviour of banks’ enterprise customers to develop a model that could link the personality of a potential borrower to their creditworthiness. With this model, Haniza founded GFI Fintech in 2018 to fill the gap she had identified in the market. The company provides Malaysian financial businesses with a useful alternative credit scoring system that assesses ability and willingness to pay based on three key factors: entrepreneurial potential, financial decision-making, and compliance. Loan applicants complete a short psychometric test to provide lenders with a detailed report about their characteristics and behaviour patterns. To do this, GFI analyses their answers as well as their answering patterns. For example, the time they took to respond to a question can be used to determine if they read it properly. This reveals certain behavioural characteristics in an individual. The test can be completed either in front of the loan officer or remotely, in which case GFI will use facial recognition technology to verify the identity of the applicant. GFI was designed in accordance with the recognised principles of good practice, so it meets the internationally accepted standards of alternative credit scoring. Each application is optimised for use on mobile phones, tablets, and computers, and is easily accessible whenever needed. GFI can calculate a credit rating for an individual, a company, or both by analysing multiple sources. It can be calibrated to the lender’s unique credit risk framework and business model. With a self-learning algorithm, its accuracy is continuously enhanced. Haniza believes that GFI can now predict whether an applicant will default on a loan with more than 90% accuracy. Since it is cloud-based, GFI can easily be deployed. It offers multiple selfservice dashboards, which can be accessed through the internet. This makes it simple and easy to monitor progress. Furthermore, lenders can send customers emails and SMS notifications directly from the dashboard, making customer relationship management much easier. Consumers can benefit from faster loan approval since their credit score and individual analytics are automatically generated following their assessment, enabling lenders to make quicker decisions. With the borrowers themselves being the primary source of data, there is no need to rely on the efficiency of third parties. With its comprehensive risk assessments, GFI allows lenders to better understand the risks they are taking when they provide loans. This will enable them to offer appropriately priced credit to entrepreneurs and consumers without a record of their financial history. This feature will primarily benefit microentrepreneurs, rural producers, women, and young people, providing them with a starting point from which they can build a credit history. GFI also promotes responsible lending practices and reduces overindebtedness by identifying those who will be able to and willing to repay. This will also improve the financial health of consumers and help them to make better financial decisions over time. Supported by an international team of experts that consists of data scientists, technologists, psychometricians, psychologists, test developers, and finance experts, Haniza continues to provide innovative alternative credit scoring solutions to clients in the finance industry. GFI is now available in Bahasa Malaysia, English, and Mandarin, and is tailored to fit different local cultures, norms, and values. Interface in other languages can be readily developed. As a result of her commitment to her work, Haniza Yon has been awarded Most Dedicated Fintech Founder & CEO in the Influential Businesswoman Awards 2023. We congratulate her on this excellent achievement and look forward to seeing what she goes on to accomplish in the years to come. Contact: Haniza Yon Company: Gfi Fintech Web Address: Based in Malaysia, GFI Fintech Sdn Bhd is a data technology company that specialises in providing profiling technology to the finance industry. The company is named after its flagship product, General Financial Insights (GFI), which is a psychometric credit risk assessment system. In 2018, it was founded by CEO and Director Haniza Yon, who has been awarded Most Dedicated Fintech Founder & CEO, Malaysia, in the Influential Businesswoman Awards 2023. P May23157