A new financial services ecosystem, nourished by data but built on agreed and shared standards
“A new financial services ecosystem, nourished by data but built on agreed and shared standards”
Blockchain and DLT have made the mainstream, FinTech has been displaced by “BigTech” in panel discussions and Data continues to fuel innovation… these are a few of the themes I took away from SIBOS 2017.
New partnerships and collaboration
Conversations I had with clients throughout the week demonstrated to me how critical partnering had become to commercial success and also how central this was to their strategy. With the onset of Open Banking in the UK and PSD2 across Europe it was clear to me that banks had further embraced the need to build where they can lead, but partner where there is little strategic advantage. I guess much of this is driven by necessity in a new competitive landscape where the threat of the GAFA group of companies or the “BigTech” firms is now seen as a much greater commercial treat than that from a new FinTech.
Data continues to dominate as a critical enabler to success in 2018
We’ve moved on from Data Lakes and Cloud, however the requirement to be able to interrogate, understand and protect data continues to be seen as absolutely critical to providing clients what they want, when they want it and via a means that they dictate. Good data enables the innovation in Machine Learning and digitisation of data is critical to success with Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT). Many of the conversations I had acknowledged the progress made in better using and protecting client data, however there was significant uncertainty on how regulation such as GDPR in Europe will impact these advances and innovations.
But what about SWIFT… it is their conference after all?
Despite all the disruption and uncertainty, the need for standards was seen as critical. Without these, the industry runs the risk of greatly increased operational risk, the potential for systemic risk market-wide and ultimately a significant limiting of the ability for an institution to interface and interact with “ecosystem” participants. With the further adoption of DLT, and new entrants providing financial services (driven by Open Banking and PSD2) how these standards progress and are adopted will be one to watch in 2018.
However, maybe because of SIBOS’s location this year, I did still feel many of the sessions were very Euro/ US centric and I look forward to the balance being addressed in Sydney next year. Despite some of the macro-economic gloom and undoubted geopolitical risks, many of the conversations I had were with organisations hugely optimistic about the future, and the positive impacts that innovations and collaboration will have in opening up banking in 2018.