Talent Day: the Walliance case

A group of Politecnico of Milan students worked side by side for a month and a half with Walliance, an Italian equity crowdfunding platform for the real estate market, developing a mathematical model to resolve the “game” proposed by this fintech. Imagining the presence of a secondary market internal to his platform, Walliance asked for an algorithm to calculate the market price of the shares of the companies making collections on it. The aim was to obtain a reference value that would also take into consideration changes in the progress of work on individual projects.

Thus the idea for a potential secondary market that was specific for real estate equity crowdfunding was born, as well as a collaboration that has brought together two worlds which in Italy often struggle to work in synergy: those of companies and universities.

This is the story of five young talents and an innovative company, it is the story of those people who won the Talent Day: an initiative co-organized by Politecnico of Milan and Fintech District to bring students closer to the fintech world and create connections between them and the companies looking for new talents in need of growing.

As well as Walliance, 4 other fintech companies participated in the Talent Day: Fabrick, Modefinance, SplittyPay, and Wavenure. More than 40 students were involved, coming from Faculties of Management Engineering, Computer Science and Mathematics and having the profiles of Data Scientists, Project Managers, and Developers.

For more information on the initiative, you can read the article at this link. In the following, we want to tell you the story from the mentor’s point of view and that of the students who, by winning, proved they were able to work both in synergy and in a pragmatic way.

Walliance immediately set the task with the aim of obtaining a tangible final result, pointing out that “what students have done can be the base from which to develop a secondary market for equity crowdfunding” explains Leonardo Grechi, Business Developer of Walliance and mentor of the student team made up from Aurora Trebbi, Maddalena Lischetti, Lorenzo Cerretani, Federico Tappi and Nicolo Ottonello.

In a month and a half of work, these students worked out a mathematical model and even wrote a few lines of code in C ++ making it operative. “If we had had more time available, we would have done an even more effective job” adds Grechi, defining his mentoring experience as “a good lesson on how to work in a team. I tried to explain the meaning of what we were doing and be supportive during the project. We always shared all the intermediate steps and decided together how to proceed week by week. The final result was excellent”.

Walliance has already collaborated with the Polytechnic, supporting the activities of the Crowdinvesting Observatory and the realization of its 1st report on the real estate global crowdfunding. The opportunity offered by Fintech District was therefore “an opportunity to expand collaboration with this university”.

“Talent Day has been an important opportunity of visibility for the fintechs and has given us the opportunity to work on something practical” comments CEO and Founder of Wallliance, Giacomo Bertoldi, in the hope that the result obtained can be implemented in his model of business.

For the students, the initiative was “an opportunity to explore the world of fintech and startups which were previously unknown” explains Federico Tappi. Nicolo Ottonello points out that “in a university system like the Italian one, which is strongly focused on theoretical notions, experiences such as Talent Day help to compensate the absence of practical skills required in the job market.

The whole team agrees with the fact that the greatest difficulty has been the lack of time available for biz.game. “We had to develop from scratch a pricing algorithm that could be as realistic as possible and reflecting the characteristics of the real estate market – explains Maddalena Lischetti – The lack of historical data to better understand the possible price trend of a share linked with the real estate project was another major difficulty “.

The final budget was positive for the students. “We were really able to get in touch with the Fintech world, until then unexplored,” explains Lorenzo Cerretani. His team-mate Nicolò Ottonello added that “it was also useful to further develop the skills of working in a team“. Aurora Trebbi points out how the work with Walliance has allowed her to “learn some economic/financial concepts not covered in the courses”.

All this happened also thanks to the excellent relationship between the team and their mentor. Federico Tappi defines this last as being “beautiful and effective”. “Leonardo – he says – gave us all the necessary information, listening to our every idea and giving us his expert opinion on its possible realization”.

the students also appreciated, as Trebbi explains, the fact that the mentor “was able to clearly explain what he expected of us. Thanks to his experience in the field, we were able to understand what could be done and what not “. And so, these 5 young students have won, not only the Talent Day but also a connection with the fintech universe, precious for their future, wherever it may be!

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Talent Day, with the Politecnico of Milan

Five companies selected by the Fintech District each prepared a biz.game on which more than 40 students from the Politecnico of Milan worked on for a month and a half. They presented their solution during the final event in which the winner was proclaimed. This was the Talent Day, co-organized by Fintech District and the Politecnico of Milan!

Created to promote opportunities for integration at a professional level, this initiative allowed students to get closer to and learn about the Fintech world, identifying the most important players and the diverse opportunities offered by the ecosystem. At the same time, by connecting Fintech companies in search of human capital with undergraduates, it served as a facilitator for the recruitment of young talents.

The companies involved – Fabrick, Wavenure, Splitty Pay, Walliance and Modefinance – developed a biz.game related to their own model and subsequently mentored the team along the way, guiding and supporting them during the development of biz.game. Each team had students coming from the Faculties of Management Engineering, Computer Science and Mathematics and having the profiles of Data Scientists, Project Managers, and Developers.

The young participants, who were enthusiastic about Talent Day, found the experience “an excellent opportunity to get involved and confront a new reality, looking for winning ideas”. Each case study was an adventure in itself but the biz.games were interesting with the tutors both present and motivating.

“I think the world of Fintech is a world with great prospects for future engineers – Daniele Marazzina, math professor at Politecnico of Milan, commented at the end of the event – this is why we wanted to allow our students to meet the world of startups and try to actually ‘touch’ and feel the job opportunities. The Fintech District was the ideal partner for this, together we were able to make the meeting of Polimi students with some very interesting Fintechs take place”.

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Machine Learning and gender gap: what can we do?

Last week in the second round of our “Talking Heads” format we hosted the WiMLDS community to talk about machine learning and data science. We have discovered how these themes can influence the present and future of the fintech sector. It was also an opportunity to deepen the activities of this reality that has just started writing its Milanese chapter and is also open to collaborations and initiatives also shared with interested companies and startups and that share its mission.

Here is the interview with the two referents of WiMLDS Milan,Claudia Volpetti and Carlotta Orsenigo, speakers at the meeting together with Katarina Milosevic (Generali)

Machine learning in finance and banking: 3 examples of already existing applications and one that you are looking at

Machine learning plays a prominent role in several financial applications from trading, where complex algorithms are used to optimize trading decisions, to credit scoring, with the aim of predicting the creditworthiness of individuals or companies, and fraud detection, to identify new potential security risks.

Which activities would you like to carry out in the Milan area (meetings, workshops …)?

WiMLDS (Women in Machine Learning and Data Science) is an international community of women interested in machine learning and data science. The WiMLDS Milan Chapter, the first Italian chapter of the community, was established at the beginning of 2018 as a local Meetup group in Milan as the Italian reference point of the international WiMLDS community which currently counts 25 chapters spread all over the world. WiMLDS Milan’s mission is to create opportunities for women interested in machine learning and data science as well as engage in technical and professional conversations in a positive, supportive environment by hosting talks, technical workshops, networking events and hackathons. WiMLDS Milan is organized by Claudia Volpetti and Carlotta Orsenigo who are members of the Machine Learning and Big Data Analytics research group at the School of Management of Politecnico di Milano. On the meetup page “Milan Women in Machine Learning and Data Science” you can find updates on the forthcoming events and meetings.

How can you contact a fintech company that wants to commit itself to decreasing the gender gap in the sector? What actions can it take? What would you propose to do in a joint collaboration with you?

Companies interested in WiMLDS events can join us on the MeetUp community or contact directly the organizers Claudia Volpetti and Carlotta Orsenigo at Politecnico di Milano. Companies can support initiatives by hosting meetings, workshops and technical sessions or helping WiMLDS in organizing hackathons related to the machine learning and data science domains.

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