Over two days last week, more than 70 financial technology companies presented hands-on demos of their latest solutions in San Jose, California. The companies that demoed their products varied by geographical location, experience, technology, and area of application, which always adds to the conference's appeal. I’ve attended quite a few Finovate shows before and have often wondered if having more fintech developments also means more financial inclusion. I did get the answer last week with two solutions that stood out. First, BanQu: the only humanitarian fintech solution, to my knowledge, with a very memorable presentation.
We’re one month into our experience with the Amazon Echo, the voice-activated device that accesses music, information, and pretty much anything else on the web. There have been a lot of proclamations of “game changer” made around the Echo, and based on our experience, those proclamations are correct. It’s a game changer, possibly a life changer.
We attended the Money2020 Europe conference in Copenhagen a couple weeks ago. This was the first Money2020 conference outside of the epic assembly of payments geeks in Las Vegas, and it was a great first effort. People were universally pleased with the venue, a conference center near the airport, and there was ample opportunity to network. Unlike in Las Vegas, it was fairly easy to find people and have good conversations.
The crowd was friendly, and the vibe was easygoing and enthusiastic. And there was a lot to talk about for us payment geeks, as reliable sources told us that 40% of all fintech activity is related to payments. Here are a few of the topics and ideas that resonated with us at the show.
The first sets of preliminary recommendations by the subcommittees of the Securities and Exchange Commission's Equity Market Advisory Committee were released yesterday on the SEC's website. The full 17-member committee is scheduled to reconvene for the fourth time on April 26, 2016 at SEC headquarters in Washington, D.C. The meeting will follow a March 3 Senate Banking Committee hearing, the key action of which was the regulator promise that with the work of and recommendations from the Equity Market Structure Advisory Committee, the SEC would get the ball rolling on market structure and regulatory reform, whatever that entails, before the end of the current U.S. election cycle.
Assume you want to spend all your US$100 to buy goods in a shopping mall. At the checkout, you say that you will send an email promising to pay US$100 (i.e., an electronic IOU). The merchant happily accepts the email and goes to the bank. The bank also accepts the email and credits US$100 to the merchant’s account.