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Interview with Liudas Kanapienis, founder of Ondato


Bianca Iulia Simion

· 6 min read
Interview with Liudas Kanapienis, founder of Ondato
For this interview, we spoke with Liudas Kanapienis, founder of Ondato, a compliance company that streamlines KYC and AML processes for businesses. Liudas talks about his background, the team that helped build Ondato, and the company's services. He explains how compliance can be turned into a business benefit and gives examples of how Ondato has helped businesses beyond just meeting regulatory requirements. Learn more about what makes Ondato thrive in the following lines.

Can you tell us about your background and what inspired you to start Ondato?

I spent many years working on various fintech projects and saw KYC processes in real time. Back then, KYC compliance had many issues and quite a few flaws. Together with Andrej Vistorskij, we realized that we could address these issues, so we started Ondato.

Compliance is a complex and highly regulated space. How did you go about building a team with the necessary expertise to tackle this industry?

The years I spent working on other fintech projects meant that I already knew many experts in this field, which helped a lot. After that, building our team came quite naturally, as Lithuania is full of amazing specialists in this field. Now, we mostly rely on third-party recruiters and haven’t been disappointed.

Can you walk us through how Ondato's platform works and how it streamlines the KYC and AML process for businesses?

To be honest, if I were to explain all of it, we’d be here all day. As we’ve expanded, many of the services we offer are much more than just Identity Verification, which we tend to associate with KYC and AML.

I will say this: many of our solutions are powered by AI and machine learning, we have an incredible team of KYC specialists, and we truly try to adapt to the needs of our customers. Our solutions were created to be easily pliable whenever businesses need it. We’re also very focused on regulations, as they tend to change and update, and we want our clients to stay on top of the game no matter what. All of this ensures that compliance can become a business benefit.

So in one sentence Ondato could be called: The end-to-end KYC compliance operating system.

You've mentioned that compliance can be turned into a business benefit. Can you expand on this and give some examples of how Ondato's services have helped businesses beyond just meeting regulatory requirements?

See, we often forget that processes like identity verification aren’t just legal requirements. Knowing your customers, your partners, the businesses you deal with is incredibly important. It both protects companies from fraud and ensures they can provide a service that is needed. We also help with setting up remote processes, which are incredibly important as more and more clients are choosing to do things online rather than in person. Keeping that relationship with your customers and moving to remote processes can be a challenge, and we are helping companies deal with it.

Ondato has achieved impressive revenue growth and a strong pipeline of contracts. What do you attribute this success to, and how do you plan to sustain this growth?

One, it is our incredible team. Time and time again, I’ve seen our employees take challenges head-on and strive to improve the service with every step. Two, and this includes a bit of luck - is the market itself. KYC processes have become more popular in the last few years, and I think we started Ondato at just the right time to jump on the bandwagon. Last but not least, the product and all the efforts to meet customer needs and challenges.

The global enterprise governance, risk, and compliance market is projected to grow significantly over the next decade. How do you see Ondato positioning itself to take advantage of this growth?

The main thing we can and intend to do is keep offering our services. As the regulations have changed over the past few years, we have had no problem adapting accordingly, and as they continue to do this, we will continue to provide solutions. It’s no secret that stricter regulations are good for us as more companies are likely to need our services, but they’re also good for those companies. As long as businesses know how to keep up, these regulations will only ensure that they are secure from fraud, money laundering, and other scams.

Can you tell us about a specific success story with one of Ondato's clients and how your platform has helped them?

An example that comes to mind is OnlyFans - subscription-based social media platform. As the adult industry is incredibly sensitive when it comes to both identity and age verification, it’s very important that a service of that popularity meets all requirements. At the beginning, OnlyFans had many issues with fraud, compliance regulations, and issues with age confirmation. We have created a solution for them that has put them at the top of industry standards, comparable even to financial institutions, which we know tend to be the strictest with their KYC processes.

OCR is a key technology behind Ondato's platform. How do you see this technology evolving in the future, and how is Ondato staying ahead of the curve?

Currently, very few OCR solutions focus on ID vendors. We’ve made ours available for everyone recently to rectify that fact. Currently, it is able to read documents across 186 countries and works with nearly all languages. It can also read and digitalize over 10 thousand document templates in less than a second with 99.8% accuracy. Currently, this is the best on the market.

Because OCR technology is based on AI and machine learning, it is improving every day. And it's getting more accurate every day, so I don't think it's the future, it's just the present we live in.

You've received backing from some prominent European VCs. How has this support helped Ondato's growth, and what advice would you give to other entrepreneurs looking to secure funding?

Let’s start with my advice because it’s pretty simple: dedicate everything to your product, trust in it, and show that trust. We were very fortunate to receive backing from OTB ventures, LitCapital and Startup Wise Guys, Black Pearls VC and it all happened because we put forward a service we believed in.

Finally, what's next for Ondato? Are there any exciting developments or plans on the horizon that you can share with us?

Although exciting, our plans aren’t exactly new. We started with the goal to make KYC and AML compliance easy, and we want to continue working towards that. So the next thing coming is the same as it’s always been: ensuring secure services in cyberspace. You will definitely hear about our new launches, I just don't want to spoil it yet.

Ondato is raising a funding round through SeedBlink to build the leading KYC & AML technology. Explore the round materials here.

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