New CPA Hacks 2019 hackathon showcases data-driven financial analysis

Innovative thought and evaluation around financial analysis took centre stage at a weekend event in Toronto hosted by Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada (CPA Canada).

Toronto, September 16, 2019 – Innovative thought and evaluation around financial analysis took centre stage at a weekend event in Toronto hosted by Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada (CPA Canada).

CPA Hacks 2019, a newly launched hackathon to concentrate on emerging trends, brought together dozens of competitors eager to enhance traditional financial analysis. The weekend event challenged a diverse group of professionals, students and others to create and implement innovative ways of leveraging data to better evaluate and predict business performance.

“In an era of new and continuously expanding data streams, stakeholders increasingly rely on non-traditional data, alongside environmental, social and governance (ESG) information to monitor and evaluate businesses, often in real-time,” notes Michael Wong, Principal, Technology, Research, Guidance and Support of CPA Canada. “Today, information on everything from customer reviews and social media sentiments to logistics data and climate impact is available, if you know where to look. This requires financial statement preparation and analysis to evolve to meet new demands.”

CPA Hacks 2019 challenged participants to come up with new ways to incorporate both financial information and non-traditional data for use by investors and other stakeholders. The event attracted 20 four to six-person teams comprised of CPAs, data scientists, developers and engineers excited to compete for cash prizes while learning new skills and tackling real-world scenarios.

The CPA Hacks 2019 winners were:

  • First place – Team 17, which picked up bragging rights and $3,500
  • Runner up – SentiTech, which went home with $1,500

“CPA Canada continues to explore innovative approaches to help ensure professional accountants are prepared to add value to their organizations in this data-centric world,” says Davinder Valeri, Director, Research, Guidance and Support of CPA Canada. “Our first hackathon was a success. We want to thank our partners and judges for supporting CPA Hacks 2019.”

CPA Hacks’ partners were Xero, a financial sponsor, Lighthouse Labs, which provided the venue space, and ThinkData Works, Inc. (ThinkData), which provided the use of its data management platform Namara during the event.

If you have ideas for future challenges, please email us at: cpahacks@cpacanada.ca.