Rising star: Melius
Rising star: Melius
Prompt works in technology hubs on either side of the pond, so we’re always keen to get to know more about the innovators on our doorsteps in both Boston and London. Each week, we’ll interview a local startup to learn more about the technology and inspiration that can be found right here at home. Recently we chatted with RJ Irving, co-founder and CEO of Melius. This Boston-based startup develops an application that collects your basic financial information and identifies inefficiencies to help improve your money planning for the future.
1) Tell us a bit about Melius.
Melius helps financial advisors with the front-end of their business. Most of the technology built for the financial space is geared toward making existing businesses more efficient. The trouble is that most people cannot build a business. That is where we come in. Melius is a simple tool that advisors use with their prospects to educate them about the building blocks of a strong financial plan. Built into our tool is a direct link between advisors and prospects to accelerate the on-boarding process. Most other fintech companies start with the idea of replacing the advisors all together. Melius is designed to enhance the human relationship, not replace it.
2) What does innovation mean to you?
Innovation means so many different things. If I had to narrow it down to two they would be simplification and solving a problem from another angle.
3) Why is New England such a hotbed for innovation?
As New Englanders it is in our DNA to innovate and look for a better way. A little idea about a government for the people by the people started here. We have been innovators since leaving our homelands to start and create new lives for ourselves.
4) Do you have any concerns about New England’s growth and innovation culture?
My only concern would be that after this winter more and more people will question why they subject themselves to this climate. Most new businesses are location agnostic and with that freedom it gets harder and harder to endure eight feet of snow and single digit temperatures.
5) What are some of the trends and challenges you’ve seen in the New England tech scene?
Not all tech companies are setting up shop in downtown Boston. We are seeing tech companies pop up in Portland ME, Western MA, Southern NH – really all over.
6) If you weren’t based in New England, which city and/or country would you want to be based in and why?
If we were not based here in Boston, we would most likely end up in Denver or Boulder, Colorado. There are great people there, a great vibe, and you still get to experience all the seasons. But even when it does snow in the winter, it can also be 70 the next day. If we left the country there is a great fintech startup scene in Australia which I think we could get used too as well!
7) If you could meet any single innovator (alive or dead) over a coffee, who would you want to meet?
I would want to have a coffee with Walt Disney. Hands down one of the greatest innovators I have studied. He went $1.5 million in debt in 1937, hot on the heels of the great depression, to make Snow White. It was the first of its kind, a full-length annotated film, and it grossed over $416 million.
8) Name a piece of technology you’ve bought personally that you love – either recently or in the past – and why you bought it.
I just bought a MacBook Air to replace my MacBook Pro. The old one was only five years old, but the difference in weight and speed is night and day.
To learn more about Melius, please visit their website here. To be our next Rising Star, get in touch today.