The Value of The World Economic Forum for Fintech

Whether or not based just on digital disruption, the change brought into by technologies accelerated the way of doing business in the aftermath of 2008 global recession.

Since then, many initiatives have started to emerge from the crowd so that community dynamics has become an essential ingredient to do business and, experts argue, communities have gained the power to quickly and strongly influence society and enterprises.

In this respect, Jonathan Auerbach, Executive Vice-President, Chief Strategy and Growth Officer for PayPal, pointed out that:

Digital technology is transforming customer expectations and preferences, challenging leaders across industries to adapt and evolve their business models. The financial services industry is no exception.

According to his point of view, the rationale behind this according to his view is that:

The mass adoption and global ubiquity of mobile phones, coupled with the digitization of financial processes and services, has created growing customer demand for seamless digital financial experiences and launched a new era of financial technology (or fintech) innovation.

In the context of 2017 World Economic Forum’s theme, responsive leadership, over 200 delegates from Innovate Finance, the independent membership organisation representing UK’s global FinTech sector, will be discussing on the future of the industry in an ad hoc session, “The Global FinTech Revolution”, at 15:30 GMT the 19th of January.

For the last years, FinTech has been opening new opportunities for both companies and consumers. In fact, as companies adopt new technologies they deliver more tailored, convenient and affordable solutions for underserved populations and communities.

However, responsive leadership still plays a pivotal role in creating the framework to build momentum. Let’s consider for example the role played by the British FCA which has earned the title of the most innovative regulator in the world; or the one of Bank of England which launched an accelerator to work directly with fintech firms developing blockchain and distributed ledger technologies; or the importantce of local governments in supporting the establishment of FinTech hubs in cities like Manchester, Leeds or Edinburgh.

Commenting on the significance of Davos, Lawrence Wintermeyer, CEO of Innovate Finance said:

Across the political, business and academic landscape leaders must be in better tune with their communities and to listen and deliver tangible outcomes and benefits that better engage with and reflect the voice of the people – this is at the heart of responsive leadership.

He concluded:

FinTech is about democratising finance and using innovation to provide better services for consumers that can help them to advance their social progress and improve economic development. We bring some of our members this week to Davos to showcase a few of the FinTech innovations that are helping to connect more people to financial services by putting their needs at heart of their business models.

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