Best of MoneyConf 2018

This June 2018 MoneyConf brought leading experts from the world of cryptocurrency, fintech and blockchain to the RDS in Dublin.

The Dublin‘s credentials as a leading global centre for financial services and fintech were reflected in the recent three-day MoneyConf, held at the RDS Arena in Ballsbridge.

The event, returning to Dublin this year after previously being held in Madrid, attracted 5,000 delegates from around the world to an intensive schedule of presentations and exhibits from leading figures in such fast-growing areas cryptocurrencies, blockchain, deeptech, regtech and virtual reality (VR) innovation.

CamiSiri went along to hear the thoughts of some of the big names in the Fintech and Banking industries. These are some highlights from MoneyConf 2018

MoneyConf will stay in Dublin ‘for the foreseeable future’

Paddy Cosgrave said that “[…] Dublin is a fantastic city for hosting – given the size of the venues here – an event up to about 20,000 people, so MoneyConf is very much here for the foreseeable future.”

Despite the fintech hype, most payments are still offline

Sarah Friar, the CFO of Square – the payments firm established by Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey – was the first guest on the centre stage and had an engaging and insightful conversation with John Fraher of Bloomberg. She said there may be plenty of hype around financial technology, but the reality is that most people still make payments offline.

“Today, 20 million small businesses in the US don’t accept electronic payments. In the UK, which is beginning to be a burgeoning market for us, 50 per cent of small companies don’t accept them,”

Her discussion on diversity and the need for more women in senior management roles in the tech industry was a standout moment. Square’s management team is 50% women and Ms Friar said it is obvious that companies across all sectors need to do more in terms of diversity.

“It isn’t just about diversity, it is also about inclusion. You can do all you want to hire people in but if they arrive and it isn’t an inclusive environment and they don’t feel like it is the place for them…they ain’t staying. It is just a great big leaky bucket of energy,”

We Are at the Beginning of Tokenization of Everything

Jeremy Allaire, Co-Founder & CEO of Circle spoke about a “crypto-revolution,” saying that global society is “at the beginning of a tokenization of everything”.

As internet transformed data and communications, blockchain is now poised to revolutionize every aspect of finance and reinvent public and civil services in its image. Every form of value storage and public record becomes a crypto-token that has free-floating market value and can be traded on global digital exchanges.

Allaire outlined three categories of crypto-assets, beginning with privacy-focused cryptocurrencies that remove financial activities from the centralized control of governments and serve as “a public good” on the internet.

The internet is awesome, but it is broken

The Ethereum co-founder, Joe Lubin outlined ways in which blockchain technology is set to bring about a revolution in terms of online security.

Internet was inherently unsafe because it wasn’t developed without a natively-built money or identity construct at its heart.

He said the current situation in terms of data protection and security for internet users is unsustainable. He added that blockchain technology represents a new kind of infrastructure that is infinitely better in terms of not only authenticating who someone is but also protecting their identity.

It’s an API revolution, not an Open Banking revolution

 the CEO a discussed the power of open banking and if it will be consumer-centric.

Edward Robinson of Bloomberg held one of the most interesting panels, with Starling Bank founder and CEO Anne BodenValentin Stalf the N26 CEO and Deutsche Bank’s JP Rangaswami.

“Not a lot has happened [since PSD2],” said Boden. “I don’t think that Open Banking alone will transform the industry.” Firms need to start looking at their own value chains and investigating the possibility of opening them up to consumers.

When it comes down to it, concluded Boden, the industry is facing “an API revolution, not an Open Banking revolution”. Connectivity between value-added services and banks should always be the end goal, and will result in improved customer satisfaction.

Lemonade model

This insurtech startup Lemonade is betting big that behavioural economics will give them an edge over established industry players. Daniel Schreiber co-founder and CEO explained how they are finding incredible success with this novel approach in an age-old industry.
Lemonade is a P&C insurance company that uses AI and chatbots to deliver insurance policies and handle claims for its users. Proclaiming ‘instant everything’, Lemonade insures a customer in 90 seconds and pays a claim in three minutes.

Lemonade’s pricing scheme differs from traditional insurers as they keep a flat fee of 20% of the customer’s premium while setting aside the remaining 80% to pay claims and purchase reinsurance. Furthermore, unclaimed premiums go to non-profit organizations of the customer’s choosing in an annual ‘giveback’.

Railsbank wins ‘Best fintech startup’ at MoneyConf

UK startup Railsbank has won MoneyConf 2018’s Pitch competition, beating competition from more than 100 entries to win the title.

The open banking and compliance platform gives companies access to global wholesale banking services, through a platform provided with just five lines of code. The early stage start-up was crowned the winner after three rounds of pitching against 21 other companies on-stage in front of investors and media.

Brad van Leeuwan, Head of Partner Network at Railsbank: “This is a major validation for our team and our partners. Winning PITCH at MoneyConf is going to help us not only get our message out there but hopefully get the product to market even faster.”

Two incredible days of inspiring speeches, good networking where I’ve seen lots of innovation in the fintech, crypto and banking sector.

I definitely recommend MoneyConf and I suggest from now to look for the 2019 edition’s, always in Dublin, always in Ireland.

See you next year!

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