What We Learned in 2022, vs ChatGPT's Perspective

As the new year begins, I like to reflect on the learnings from the previous year... and wow, what a wild ride it's been at Carmoola! But in true Carmoola style, it's not just another boring blog post. We thought we'd consult the "tool of the moment", ChatGPT, and see what it has to say on our learnings too 😉

"Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth."

Mike Tyson 🥊


FCA requires patience 🧘‍♂️

We started the year unable to launch due to waiting for regulatory approval…I learnt four key things that I wish I'd known before going through the process:

  1. Make sure your original application is of the highest quality, if you rush this process, it will slow you down later.
  2. Use professional compliance advisors not lawyers to help with your application.
  3. If you are new to financial services then I would highly recommend completing your compliance exams (ICA). This was massively useful in helping make some of the core decisions. 
  4. Some of the good qualities of an entrepreneur like drive, determination, commercial reasoning and persistence don’t apply when dealing with the FCA. You need to understand this early otherwise it will drive you mad 🤪


🤖 ChatGPT says:

Dealing with the FCA requires a great deal of patience, as there is a lot of paperwork and bureaucracy involved. The FCA is a financial regulatory body, which means that all transactions and investments must meet their stringent standards before they can be approved. This means that the process of dealing with the FCA can be lengthy, and it is important to be patient and understand that the process is necessary to ensure the safety of the financial system. Additionally, it is important to be aware that the FCA is constantly changing and updating its regulations, which means that businesses must stay up-to-date with the latest policies and regulations. Patience is an essential skill for anyone dealing with the FCA, as it allows them to navigate the complex regulatory landscape effectively.


Customers love the product 😍

We have been absolutely blown away with the reviews, comments and reactions from our customers. It's what truly motivates the team more than anything else. Our NPS currently stands at +95 for the year. The combination of a great tech product, and truly wow customer service has been a match made in heaven!!

🤖 ChatGPT says:

Customers love Carmoola because of its easy-to-use platform, which simplifies the financing process. They can quickly and securely apply for financing online and get an instant decision. Plus, Carmoola offers competitive interest rates and flexible payment options, making it an attractive option for customers looking for an affordable car loan.


Building everything from the ground up is hard 👷‍♂️

We massively under estimated the complexity of building everything from the ground up. Just as well, as I am not sure we would have ever started! Creating the full automated decisioning, loan management system and collections automation is a huge amount of work, and we definitely operated the Chinese "996 approach" for months. I have to say, it's looking more and more likely to be the right decision. This enables a much better experience for the customer in the long run, and we can handle the short term pain. 

🤖 ChatGPT says:

Building technology can be hard for a variety of reasons. First, it can be difficult to keep up with the ever-changing landscape of technology. As technology evolves, developers must learn and adapt quickly to stay ahead of the curve. Additionally, technology can be complex and difficult to understand. It requires a deep understanding of coding languages and frameworks, as well as an understanding of the underlying hardware and software. Finally, building technology can be costly. New hardware and software can be expensive and require significant investment.


Raising money in 2022 was challenging 😅 

Late 2022 must have been one of the most challenging environments in recent years, to raise venture funding. Every time I turned on the news there was another major drama caused by the crazy policies of the UK government. This, coupled with being a lending business, made fundraising very difficult indeed. It was a very useful experience though, and I learnt so much. I always find it useful raising funds as you get so many great questions that help you learn even more about your business. A couple of key learnings;

  • Series A raises are very different to seed funding rounds and I wish I had been more prepared.
  • If you are an extrovert like myself, pitching on zoom calls can be extremely difficult. I get so much energy from meeting people face to face and I found my energy drop within minutes of the call. It don’t think this came across very well at all. I have since booked a course to help with this so I can manage it in the future 💪


🤖 ChatGPT says:

Raising venture capital money in 2022 has been difficult due to a number of challenges. First, the pandemic has caused unprecedented economic disruption that has hurt investor confidence and caused many investors to become more cautious with their investments. Additionally, the market is still uncertain, making it difficult for investors to accurately assess the potential of a venture. Lastly, the competition for limited venture capital funding has increased significantly in recent years, as more startups have entered the market. This makes it more difficult for individual startups to stand out and secure the necessary funding.


So many great people in the industry 

The biggest pleasure this year has been getting to know some many great people across the industry. One of the best things about working in fintech is the density of talent. Not only do I have the pleasure of working with the amazing team at Carmoola, I also get to meet incredible equity investors, debt investors, service providers and other founders. I have learnt so much from everyone! I would like to say special thank you to Mark, Yusuf, Apostolos, Alistair, Rob, Sam, Seb, Nikos, Tom and Dan.    

🤖 ChatGPT says:

The UK fintech industry is home to a thriving and innovative ecosystem of entrepreneurs, investors, and financial institutions. From start-ups to incumbents, the UK continues to be a leading centre for financial technology innovation.

The UK fintech industry is a hotbed for talent, attracting some of the best and brightest minds from around the globe. The UK’s diverse population of entrepreneurs, investors, and financial institutions has enabled an incredibly vibrant and competitive sector.

UK-based fintech companies are tackling a range of important challenges, such as financial inclusion, financial literacy, and digital payments. Companies such as Monzo, Revolut, and N26 are leading the way in digital banking, while companies such as GoCardless, Transferwise, and Starling Bank are revolutionising the payments space with innovative solutions.

In addition to start-ups, the UK fintech industry is also home to some of the world’s largest financial institutions. Banks such as Barclays, Lloyds Banking Group, and HSBC are investing heavily in fintech and are leading the way in terms of innovation. The UK also has a thriving venture capital scene, with a number of funds investing in early-stage companies.


What did you think of ChatGPT's view? We reckon they're on to something pretty cool!