Around Fintech in 80 Days: EP2 – What is Fintech (PART 2) – CFTE Blog

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Around Fintech in 80 Days: EP2 – What is Fintech (PART 2)

In the 2nd episode of Around Fintech in 80 Days series, Huy picks up where Nicolas left off and dives deeper to help provide a more complete understanding of Fintech by answering some of Nicolas’ burning questions.
You can also view this episode on iTunes | YouTube 

About Around Fintech in 80 Days

Around Fintech in 80 Days is a unique mentoring process brought to life as a series of Vlogs originally published on Facebook where a Fintech Entrepreneur (Huy Nguyen Trieu) mentors an ambitious young startup founder (Nicolas Tonnard) on how Fintech is transforming the finance industry and the opportunities this represents. In their discussions, they cover a range of topics including Blockchain, P2P Lending, Bitcoin, Challenger Banks, Machine Learning, Big Data, Open Banking and much more.
The series is split into 12 chapters with each chapter containing a series of videos explaining the theme in more detail as follows:
1. What is Fintech
2. Technology in Fintech
3. Education in Fintech
4. Collaboration between Fintech startups and incumbent banks
5. Investment in Fintech
6. Outsiders in Fintech
7. Fintech strategy
8. Neobanks and Challenger banks
9. Bitcoin & Blockchain
10. P2P Finance
11. Ecosystems
12. Fintech: finance for millennials?
We hope you enjoy this episode and if you’d like a more in-depth overview of the main Fintech trends, please have a look at our online Fintech course, Around Fintech in 8 Hours here:
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Transcript of Video

Morning everyone and thanks a lot, Nicola. I’m currently in London. Nicola was in Paris. And as you can see, in London it’s quite wet and windy. So I was on my way to Imperial College and I was stuck in the rain. So I’m very excited to be talking and trying this experiment of around Fintech in 80 days with Nicola. And I will try to make it fun.
As a quick introduction, I run the disruptive group. Which is a business builder in finance. I have experience both in science and technology. I was in banking for quite a while. I was most recently a managing director at CT. And I launch businesses and activities in banks. Before that, I started as an entrepreneur and I was a CEO of a tech startup in the U.S. at the end of the 90’s. Which was a very very interesting lesson. We got amazing investors, amazing technology and amazing team. But to come back to, to come back to Nicola’s point, our timing was wrong. Because we did LinkedIn but five years before LinkedIn.
So for in Fintech, I’ve been in involved in Fintech for quite awhile. I write a blog called “Disruptive Finance” and I love to share and exchange and educated about Fintech. Because I think that anyone who is in finance today, need to understand the technology. Anyone in finance needs to understand innovation. In the same way as 10 years ago, 15 years ago, if you were in advertising, if you were in the media if you were in travel, you had to understand technology because it had such an impact on your business, basically.
So to come back to, to come back to the point of Nicola about what is Fintech? and is it only disruptors? I think Fintech is a tricky and dangerous word. I would say. Because people tend to think of Fintech as startups, which they are, but it is much much more than startups. I think that what we’re talking about is really about the impact of technology on finance which is much much broader than startups.
The article that Nicola refers to, is an article I wrote two or three years ago but I think it’s still quite relevant. Where I looked at the different types of players in that ecosystem. Fintech startups are definitely one. And the Fintech startups which are trying to replicate the same thing as large traditional banks, for example, but doing it with newer technology, better user interface.
That’s definitely one of the types of innovation we see. But there are also other types of innovations. We also see other types of startups, which are not trying to replicate the same thing as the large incumbent. But which are trying to do very very different things. Just think of Facebook for example. Facebook is something that didn’t exist in the real world and Facebook is something that could only exist online. I think that’s what we’re seeing also in the Fintech world. Some companies that didn’t exist at all before and which are being created only for our world.
So that would be one where Fintech startups do the same thing but nicer, faster, cheaper.
The second one would be, Fintech startups that want to do things very differently create new services, new products that didn’t exist. The third type of innovation, I think, we would see is new services and new inference which are coming from different sectors. People which could be the Amazon could be the Alibaba which could be the Googles. Which are creating new services in finance just because it’s very very complementary to the existing business. And we’re likely to see more and more of this.
For example, the largest Fintech company in the world is Alibaba, which is an e-commerce company that entered into the space of finance. And, of course, let’s not forget the most important players in that space are still the traditional companies. The banks, the insurance companies, the asset mergers, and of course, we know that large companies will face challenges by trying to transform themselves because a 200,000 people company will transform itself much slower than a 10 people startup. But the very very large companies have a very important role to play in the space of innovation.
So, to finish off on the question of Nicola about timing, and, you know, when is the timing? I think that’s one of the most important things in you know, any kind of disruption. When does it happen? And if you look at finance, when I had my startup 15 even more than 15 years ago, at that time, people were already saying that banks would be dead.
At that time people were saying that telecom operators would be replacing banks and mobile payment would be the main way of paying. Which, if you live in the western world, hasn’t happened at all. It has happened, however, in some countries, like Kenya.
So, timing is quite key because what is the difference between 15 years ago and today? And if were to say, you know, what would be the right timing for Fintech? And when will we start to see the real disruptions? I think it’s now. And I think it’s now.
And that’s the reason why we launched the disruptive group last year. Over the last few years, we’ve seen humongous amount of activity and investment in Fintech. Five years ago, we had two billion dollar invested in Fintech. Last year we had 20 billion dollar invested in Fintech. That’s what I would call the first wave of Fintech.
That’s what we saw as the first investment into Fintech and a lot of things happened in that space. Now we are seeing the second wave of FinTech, the real investment is coming now and the real innovations. So if there was a timing for Fintech or innovation in finance, I would say, it’s definitely now. So that finishes for today.
Thanks a lot for following. Give us any kind of comments. It’s an experiment for us, so tell us what is interesting for you. And see you on Wednesday!!
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