As part of a series of City Futures events last week I attended a panel discussion and the launch of the FinTech50. #Fintech is becoming more high profile with recent main stream press articles on the impact from Matthew Wall @ BBC , David Prosser @ independent and the economist
In 2012 City of London saw a 40% increase in the office space taken by Startups, although Mark Boleat commented that most of the “Silicon Valley like innovations” in Financial services take place in New York. This left me reflecting on what role London has today and what it will become in the future?
Measuring who is leading, who is catching, who is slowing down is pretty tough also. The web is awash with media postings ,claiming Top 10 to watch, movers and shakers, new finance accelerators in various cities (Barclays, bank of america) with rumours of more coming (I’m not going to publish what I know here 🙂 . It’s clear that the global banking community is going through a prolonged period of turmoil over the last 10 years, outsourcing, offshoring and regulation all impacting profit margins.
Last weeks events are the beginning of a concerted effort by the UKTI and British (and sometimes European) based banks to grab the media attention away from New York. There will be no shortage of Fin tech companies coming through London’s doors and some will no doubt succeed. The idea of the bank business model desegregating is still emerging and the hot topic right now is payments, retail and mobility.
Banks are also beginning to realise they need to disrupt themselves otherwise others will. But questions remain;
- Are the large Finance firms setup to innovate? ( try getting a purchase order approved in < 30 days or battling through yearly budgeting cycle, even better looking into the frustrated eyes of managing directors being paid £250K a year with no budget)
- Ignore the rest of the industry at your peril. Focusing on retail, small business, investment bank or private wealth etc is dangerous. A whole insurance/re-insurance sector is ripe for disruption.
So #Fintech industry – Are you ready to buy from a startup ?