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14th June 2024

Four key takeaways from an inspiring Fintech Week London 2024

From the moment I stepped into the Fintech Week London event, I was welcomed with a smile and open arms (figuratively speaking). The energy was infectious, and the focus on shaping the future of finance, evident.


With so much goodness, where to begin?

London/UK – A fintech leader

Howard Dawber, Deputy Mayor for Business and Growth at the Greater London Authority, reiterated London’s leadership position in Europe for fintech. He spoke passionately about his commitment to maintaining this status, highlighting the city’s thriving ecosystem and innovative spirit.

Howard’s keynote was substantiated perfectly by Lord Chris Holmes who amongst, many points, shared his focus on passing a private bill to drive continued growth and innovation in the sector.


Key takeway #1: The UK is very much on the map when it comes to fintech innovation and it isn’t set to slow up.

Innovation and growth – Neobanks, Banking 3.0 and beyond

The day offered so many forward-thinking and inspiring discussions, from a great panel discussion led by Dr. Led Glyptis, featuring Mariam Ogunbambi and Nike Shoge from Starling as they discussed the next phase of growth following several years of profitable operation. Throughout, there were lots of references to “Engine” by Starling, the powerhouse behind their unrivalled bank that’s now licensable by other innovative banks – things just got really interesting. This was followed by Gnosis Pay’s Head of Strategy, Breno Maximiano, who discussed the concept of making a borderless banking platform to create interoperability between fintech’s and Web3 – something that sounds like it’s within arms reach. In summary, the concept of either your old bank account with Web3 powers or alternatively your crypto wallet with bank account capabilities.


Key takeaway #2: We’ve seen so much innovation in the sector but buckle up because there’s so much more to come!

Artificial Intelligence – heard of it?

No conference would be complete without a focus on AI and Fintech Week London really delivered on this front. I had the pleasure of listening to Theo Lau, founder of Unconventional Ventures, remind us that merely 561 days ago, the world was introduced to ChatGPT and its capabilities that have since been blown out of the water by the pace of its own advancement. Amongst many interesting points, a few jumped out. Firstly, the increased dangers of Gen AI in terms of scams, fakes and abuse – a point well made when what appeared to be a video of Theo was actually an AI-created avatar. Theo also predicted that AI would become an intrinsic and fundamental part of society, using Mark Weiser’s quote to emphasise this; “The most profound technologies are those that disappear. They weave themselves into the fabric of everyday life until they are indistinguishable from it.

Making this ever-more tangible Paolo Sironi, Global Research Leader in Banking and Financial Markets, at IBM took to the stage with some quantitative data, for example… 32% of executive respondents see AI as crucial for risk and compliance alongside the changing workforce skill requirements from 2016 – 2023. In summary, he suggests that given the advent of such technologies, softer skills such as teamwork and prioritisation were on the up.


Key takeaway #3: AI, as we can all appreciate, is changing the game – the future workplace especially, not forgetting the need for ethical considerations and AI governance.

Customer centricity – remaining true to why you likely exist

Such a great conversation here reminding us to not forget, but rather embrace, our entrepreneurial origins to serve a customer or to solve a problem for them. Emphasis was placed on putting the customers at the heart of what we do whilst developing products and services to address their desires – even those that they don’t realise they have. A story of a large bank CEO who questioned why someone would need ‘budgeting’ features in a banking app drove the point home that customer centricity must be part of the company’s DNA from the top down to avoid disconnect and the risk of other brands delighting them.

One way to enhance the customer experience in fintech especially is with embedded finance. Despite not sounding too sexy, this is, and continues to be, a game changer for brands as it allows them to keep the customer in their ecosystem (or digital experience) whilst removing friction to provide access to finance free of the need to worry about regulation and certification. Why is this important? Well life doesn’t happen at the bank, it happens everywhere else and so embedded finance brings finance to the point of greatest relevance – eloquently put by Griffin’s (a bank for fintech’s) Founder and CEO, David Jarvis.


Key takeway #4: Don’t forget the reason you exist – the customer. Seek to truly understand and serve their needs by listening and surfacing insights versus adopting archaic persona definitions as the world has, and continues to, change at pace.

To conclude…

Fintech Week London was an insightful, hugely diverse and inclusive event filled with inspiring discussions. The future of finance continues to evolve at a rapid pace, presenting wonderful opportunities for us as professionals, for brands, for the UK and for us all as consumers.

As a consultative integrated marketing partner to technology organisations, fintech especially, what’s not to like? The UK remains at the forefront of innovation and growth, AI offers a plethora of advantages as a colleague rather than a competitor, and we should place the customer at the heart of everything we do. The latter point being a philosophy that we hold dear in our mission to connect people with inspired ideas and compelling stories to build relationships, foster customer loyalty and drive business growth.


Until next time. Thanks again for having me Fintech Week London 2024.