Embedding financial services within your core business offerings promises to unlock new revenue opportunities and reduce operational costs.

As you explore the rising power of embedded finance and consider integrating financial mechanisms into your business, the inevitable ‘build-or-buy’ dilemma will arise.

And here comes the million-dollar question: ‘Should we develop a solution of our own from scratch or rely on a third party?’

Let’s figure it out!

Before you decide to Build or Buy.

  • What is my willingness to invest in payment offerings compared to my core business?
  • Am I ready to build new teams for technology development (with payments experience), partner management, compliance, and operations?
  • Where does my business operate? Where should I offer payments and other financial services today? Where do I plan to expand in the future?
  • Will building my own payments solution give me better control over user experience, drive loyalty or reduce operational costs?

Read our blog post on Designing an embedded finance strategy that works for your business and explore various opportunities to get into the embedded finance game.

  1. Build
  2. If you prioritize control and customization or need to address specific business/market needs, building your own solution may be the best option for your business.

    Pros of building an embedded finance solution in-house

    • Control & Customization
    You have 100% control over the development process. Building your own embedded finance features or solutions means that you are in charge of defining the scope of your innovation initiatives. With that control comes flexibility and freedom to add the desired functionality and features to support your unique business needs.
    • Long Term Incremental Cost at Scale
    Features are developed in the order desired, with the flexibility to potentially change that order as business goals shift. You can build your own solution with the functions that you need only, without the bloat of unwanted features. This way, you can eliminate the costs of unnecessary features, recurring subscription fees, and other hidden costs that add up in the long run.

    Cons of building an embedded finance solution in-house

    • Regulations & Compliance Requirements
    Whether it’s complying with never-ending financial regulations or undergoing multiple security and risk assessments, building an embedded finance solution from scratch can be extremely bureaucratic and time-consuming. This also exposes you to unnecessary risk in an industry that you are not familiar with.

    • Time to Market and Upfront Investment
    Acquiring qualified teams and managing product development cycles can be very expensive. Building software from scratch requires significant investment in financial capital and time. In addition, at times the infrastructure setup itself can be costly and require significant scale to justify the investment. It also takes your focus away from your core business which can have various consequences short and long term.

  3. Buy
  4. If your challenges are well-defined, are commonly found in your industry, and can mostly be addressed by existing solutions, then you should consider buying or white-labeling a ready-made solution.

    Pros of buying an embedded finance solution

    • Cost
    Opting for a ready-made product or solution can be less of a financial burden than building your own from scratch. This will allow you to save on the increasing costs of ongoing development, maintenance, and updates.
    • Time-to-Market
    Ready-made solutions can get up and running faster. Regulatory compliance, development, and testing are taken care of allowing you to launch products and services at a much faster time to market. This allows you to test out your concepts in a quick manner and iterate rapidly.

    Cons of buying an embedded finance solution

    • Recurring Costs
    For smaller businesses and organizations, off-the-shelf solutions often come with hefty monthly subscription fees. Subscriptions tend to be priced per user and/or usage and therefore as businesses scale, consistent recurring fees can become a major financial burden.
    • Customization
    No matter how many features an off-the-shelf solution provides, they will not fully suit your specific requirements. Poor product-market fit and the need to further implement workarounds or buy additional software can add up very quickly.

Tip by SimpliFi:

There are a lot of factors to consider such as control, monetary costs, time to market, customization, and implementation to be able to choose the right path for your organization.
So, build or buy? There is no one size fits all answer to the question. Understanding your business goals and requirements is vital to making a choice.