FinTech Waves


This week’s headline comes from a Bernard Lunn Daily FinTech column, in which he charts three “waves” of FinTech development. Those waves fit my own experience, though some of the milestones I would have picked are different. Click on the chart below to read the article.

I spent a lot of time this week looking at bank websites. That, too, was a look back in time.

No doubt that colored the links I picked. I see in them the tension between the entrenched technology of the past and emerging tech of the future.

Copyright 2017 Daily Fintech Advisers Ltd.

Paying with cash? You might be out of luck.

“If you’ve recently stopped in for a chopped salad at Goddess & the Baker, a turkey burger at Epic Burger or a blowout at DryBar, you may have noticed: Your money’s no good there anymore. Those businesses—plus Argo Tea and Sweetgreen, a West Coast salad chain that landed in Chicago last year—have all nixed cash in favor of credit cards and mobile transactions. Their proprietors rattle off a litany of benefits behind rejecting cash: It cuts down on transaction time, counterfeit bills, theft and armored car costs, while improving employee stress levels—and boosting the average bill,” reports Brigid Sweeney for Crain’s Chicago Business. It isn’t such a sure bet. Less than a week later, a reader wrote in a letter to the editor that she would not patronize those businesses, starting with a reasonable argument: “I will continue to use cash until bank fraud and ID theft are taken seriously.”

If you are in Chicago on Aug. 30, stop by a FinTech Rising panel on mobile payments.

Accelerating the impact of digital transformation: How financial services views the digital agenda

new study (PDF) by Harvard Business Review shows that only 20% of financial institutions believe they are reaping the full value of digital, slightly behind the 21% of all respondents. Only 15% say they are able to optimize the end-to-end digital experience. “However, for those succeeding in their digital initiatives, a vast majority say digital technology has had significant impact on their companies’ cost to serve (90%), customer loyalty (75%), and revenue growth (75%), indicating a clear opportunity for the financial services industry,” the study concludes.

20 visually stunning website designs from banks and credit unions

If you look at a lot of bank websites, you’ll see quite a few that take you back in time. But not all, as The Financial Brand reports this week: “In the Digital Age, your website is the most important touchpoint. Consumers’ expectations are soaring, as they compare your online experience against savvy players like Amazon, Facebook and Netflix. If you don’t have a world-class website, you simply can’t compete. That means if your website has a visual style stuck in the 90s or hasn’t been redesigned in the last three years, you’re probably overdue for a makeover.” Yet it will take more than websites to meet customer expectations. Jim Marous gives an overview of the next wave of technologythat’s causing financial institutions to fall even farther behind.

London FinTech Tail is a cashback platform built on the promise of Open Banking

And there’s even more. Taking advantage of new banking regulations across the pond, the app provides a seamless API link to challenger bank accounts to deposit rewards money. “The app, initially available for iOS and serving London only, offers heavy discounts at local places to eat and drink, all linked to the card you pay with and delivered each week in the form of cashback,” reports TechCrunch.


Illinois blockchain proofs of concept likely to materialize later this year. “Roughly a year after beginning to explore how blockchain can benefit government, the state of Illinois has

six pilots in various stages,” reports Government Technology. Meanwhile, a smart contract coding workshop hosted by the Illinois Blockchain Initiative and other local organizations packed DePaul University’s Coleman Innovation Center this week.