Category Archives: Innovation

Will FinTech dominate the wealth management model of the future?

This short note previously appeared as update on my LinkedIn profile – I recently authored a chapter in the WealthTech Book, a financial technology handbook for investors and entrepreneurs in global wealth and asset management.

My chapter examines the impact of FinTech on the wealth management value chain. The key question I explore is whether FinTech will dominate the wealth management model of the future, or if there still a place for traditional wealth managers. While I encourage you to grab a copy of the book and read the full chapter, the answer is yes!

A lack of innovation in the wealth management sector to date can be attributed to the scattered nature of the wealth management value chain. Banks, which typically own all aspects of the B2C value chain, have been more vulnerable to disruption with new, digitally enabled entrants picking off prize elements of the chain, such as loans or payments. In wealth management, multiple players tend to own specific parts of a B2C chain, making these markets more complex and less attractive.

However, as digital savvy individuals enter the wealth management customer base, a large number of innovative FinTechs are arriving on the scene. New market entrants are already starting to compete with incumbent wealth managers across the value chain. They are leveraging a different technology-based operating model to deliver better customer experiences, at a better price and a lower operating cost. Traditional wealth managers must disrupt themselves; otherwise they are at risk of being disrupted by new players.

To remain competitive, traditional wealth managers should review and transform their traditional service delivery models, find a new balance between human and technology (yes, they go well together!) and focus on the areas where they can add the most value. In addition, they should re-evaluate their business models including how to charge for services and the most efficient, cost effective way to deliver them.

The opportunities and threats from FinTech have just started. To date, we have only scratched the surface in terms of the amount of change we can expect across the value chain. Looking ahead, I anticipate considerable disruption across operating models, especially in terms of how technology and human elements will bring together the FinTech innovations with the traditional nature of the sector.

You can read more about this topic in chapter one of the WealthTech Book. I’d be more than happy to continue this discussion, and welcome you to send me a direct message or leave a comment below!

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Guestblog: Where is “PayPal” for my identity? (or the Beatle-esque title “Filing Cabinet in the Sky”)

Please find a guestblog by Sonia Miles-Khan. She is a FinTech and Innovation practitioner and I am excited to share her thoughts on this blog.

Where is PayPal for my identity?

Or more broadly “Where is my digital safe deposit box/identity bank?” my “filing cabinet in the sky” so to speak…..

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Source image: www.buildthesong.net

Why do we need it?

In society’s movement toward faceless and paperless digital transactions in all walks of commerce and life, the need to verify who we are and authorise transactions is increasing. For example, everyday many of us pay for things online. In the past we had to trust payment gateways with our credit card details and keep these details on us at all times. We had to fill out pesky direct debt slips and sign them and fax them off to administration facilities. However now we don’t need to do that. PayPal is the secure payment gateway that we trust. We enter our bank and card details and secure them with an alpha-numeric password in our PayPal account.

Similarly “proving” who we are has evolved as a laborious task.  While 100 years ago a birth certificate and or identity card proved who we were, now we have a complex web of proving our identities; proof of age cards, birth certificates, drivers licences, passports, visas, passwords, PIN numbers, Tax File Numbers, fingerprints, CAPTCHAs…

Not only do we need to prove who we are to obtain an ID, we also need to continue to use ID after ID, to prove who we are and to multiple organisations.

The administration alone of maintaining current identification status quos is laborious. Adding to this the widening ages and literacy levels of those transacting online and the need for simple identification solutions becomes very apparent. Continue reading

Customer Experience: Playing maturity catch up…

Observations from the Sydney CX Design & Implementation Conference

(11 November – 12 November 2015)

I was lucky to be able to attend the Customer Experience Design & Implementation conference in Sydney last week listening to and speaking with organisations as each shared their experiences, success stories (of course) and learnings (can’t be enough) from organisations covering (but not limited to)  Telco’s, Financial services, Age-care, Government, Recruitment, Logistics, Design, Technology vendors, Fintech and Startups.

It was great to hear the variety of ways organisations make an effort to improve customer experiences across different industries. Such perspective across industries becomes increasingly valuable as many of the experiences people have to one industry drive their expectations and perception of others. As a result, a glass ceiling is put over industries with lower maturity levels in regards to customer experience and related expectations. From my view, which focuses on financial services and wealth management, those industries with lower customer experience maturity levels must play ‘maturity catch up’ versus other more established industries and/or organisations.

In case you are not interested to read further for more detail, buzzwords to summarise the conference include: #Employeeengagement drives customerengagement; #Designthinking; #Listening; #Empathy; #ValueExchange; #Culturalchange; #Differentiateyourexperience; #Multiscreen/#Multidevice; #Rewarddrivescustomerbehaviour; #Customerownsthejourney; #Actionable; #Beingandfeeling; #Voiceofthecustomer; #Nuroscience; Continue reading

Wealth Management and the ‘The importance of a needs based segmentation strategy’

The Segmentation Discussion in Wealth Management (part 1/2)

In the traditional thinking of a wealth management firm or private bank there are certain products only available to a wealth management or private banking client that are not available to non-HNWI’s. As personal banking client (other definitions might be applicable as well) you are not able to buy it, because your assets size is not big enough. That is pretty strange right? A client wants to buy a product, but the ‘sales person’ says no. My point of view is clear:

“Every client should be able to buy the products they want, but everything comes with a price”

The segmentation discussion in the wealth management discussion is very actual, but also not easy to grasp. Last week I had a great conversation with two wealth management experts from our beloved Switzerland and there was clear consensus that the industry business model is going to change (because it needs to, due to regulatory pressure, need for transparency and changing client behavior), but we also agreed there is no a one-off solution. The industry is looking around.

In this first of my two blogs I will focus on the way to define the right segmentation that is different from the traditional AUM (Assets Under Management) based segmentation. In the second blog I will discuss the impact on products, services, channels and pricing!

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Rabobank offers Fintech startups a stage to develop

‘Rabobank’, ‘De Lage Landen’ (Insurer) and ‘MyOrder’ announced to partner with the Startup Bootcamp FinTech for the coming three years. Together with Mastercard and Lloyds Bank, Rabobank is the only Dutch bank participating in this European accelerator program to support startups in the Fintech to accelerate their business.

The bank wants to learn from and collaborate with participating startups. In an interview with Harrie Vollaard, Innovation Director at Rabobank, the necessity of this step and the opportunities that come with this participation in Startup Bootcamp Fintech have been discussed.

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Continue reading

5 reasons why I do not want to go to the bank branch and 1 why I actually want to go

Before you continue reading go for the exercise yourself and write down reasons why you want, or not want to go to your bank branch. Let find out if we have some commonalities. My thinking started actually by defining a reason for me to go to the branch. Small disclaimer here, I do not say this is what all banking customers want, but I am pretty sure the group of customer that have similar wants as I have is quite big and increasing by the day…

I don’t want to go, because…

  1. I am forced to go because bank procedures force me to do so – My friends are complaining every day. Even I had to go back 3 times to the branch to provide additional documents when applying for a Credit Card (why didn’t you tell me on the phone?). And I am pretty sure I am not alone!
  2. I have to wait – Even with an appointment you are not sure you are serviced directly after entering the branch. The clock is ticking…
  3. I have to come back to (hopefully) finish the procedures – If you are lucky your request is processed flawless, so you only have to come back for a signature.
  4. I have to go the branch because what I want is not offered via the channel I want to use – Specific products (eg. Mortgages) in most cases cannot be bought online. You have to make an appointment to visit the branch. Most of the banks do not provide you to have that appointment after work, forcing you to take leave from work.
  5. If I go to the branch without appointment I am not sure I will leave with my need satisfied – When you access the branch without pre-announcing your visit, there is a good chance the person you need to get your question answered is not attending or available. So you have to come back later…or, Yes, make an appointment.

And all of this takes time. And that is probably the big frustration. Because we know there are faster, easier ways to do all this… Continue reading

Banks are changing rapidly behind the scenes, but still need to have the basics right

During some informal chats with Senior Sydney bankers in the past days one thing became clear about digitisation in the banking industry: Banks are really moving forward and are changing the way they interact with their clients. On the other hand, this does not automatically mean that we are really experiencing the added value this change yet.

Almost all banks have launched one or more mobile apps in the past years. A lot of them were copies of the existing online environment and used to show off, while missing the potential of mobile solutions. We have also seen launches of online platforms by larger banks. It might be worth reading the online reviews before deciding to apply for such an account. Continue reading