Category Archives: Fintech Services

PayPal is going after the big banks

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CBC News | Peter Armstrong ·| April 14, 2018

New ways to bank could do away with the 'antiquated' trip to the branch

It is precisely the kind of thing that keeps the big banks up at night: the Wall Street Journal reported this week that PayPal is quietly piloting a program that would allow users to open traditional chequing accounts.

The online payment processing firm is one of a few technology companies thinking about getting into the banking business with a new model that could fundamentally alter our relationship with traditional banks and erode the simplest and oldest way they bring in new customers.

See:  Fintech in Canada: The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

If you're a traditional bank, this is the stuff of nightmares.- Alyson Clarke, Forrester Research

"If you're a traditional bank," says Alyson Clarke, principal analyst at research firm Forrester, "this is the stuff of nightmares."

For generations, the bank's best pipeline for new customers was the young people brought in by their parents to open their first account. The parents would take their kids to whichever bank they'd been using for years, and in most cases, Clarke says, those young people would grow up and stay with that bank for the rest of their lives.

But that could be changing.

"A lot of consumers, particularly millennials, think that all banks are basically the same," Clarke told CBC News. "And that old method of going into the branch to open your bank account with your mom or dad just seems completely antiquated."

Which is why PayPal is horning in on the big banks' turf at a time when they may be least able to withstand it.

For now, PayPal is only offering traditional banking services to a select group of its customers, who can get a debit card to withdraw cash from ATMs, deposit cheques by taking a picture and have their pay slips deposited directly into their account.

Chief Operating Officer Bill Ready says PayPal is targeting those who don't have a traditional bank account. That would presumably capture some of those referred to as "unbanked" customers, but would certainly include that younger generation that hasn't made an inaugural trip to a bank branch yet.

Checkout:  Competition Bureau weighs in on fintech: urgent action required

"If you don't have a bank account, you can't take an Uber ride, can't stay in a room on Airbnb," he told the Wall Street Journal.

To do all this, PayPal has had to string together a lot of technology and a series of partnerships. PayPal itself doesn't have a banking licence in the U.S. so it has teamed up with a handful of banks that do: debit cards from a bank in Delaware, cheque deposits through another in Georgia, and even loans from a bank in Utah.

Canadian options

For now, the pilot is only happening in the United States. But at least one expert says that model would be enormously successful here in Canada.

"Banks are not well loved in this country," says Conor Bill, managing director of investment firm Mt. Auburn Capital.  "If you have a reliable alternative that you never have to establish a relationship with a bank, that is incredibly threatening to the [traditional] banks," he says.

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The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada (NCFA Canada) is a cross-Canada non-profit actively engaged with both social and investment crowdfunding, alternative finance, fintech, P2P, ICO, and online investing stakeholders across the country. NCFA Canada provides education, research, industry stewardship, and networking opportunities to over 1600+ members and works closely with industry, government, academia, community and eco-system partners and affiliates to create a strong and vibrant crowdfunding and fintech industry in Canada.  For more information, please visit:  www.ncfacanada.org

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Canadian Expats Can Now Repatriate Their Pensions

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NCFA Guest Post | April 16, 2018

If you are in your 30’s or 40’s, you are probably not too concerned as yet about your retirement; you still have a few years work ahead of you. It is surprising how quickly those years will disappear though, and if you have not prepared for it, you could find yourself much worse off financially once you stop working.

You may be contributing to a pension scheme of some sort, either through your employer or by making personal payments. There is also the possibility that you have built a pension pot while working in another country, and if that is the case, you need advice about the option of moving it to your pension fund. For instances, Canadian expats can now repatriate their pensions, if they have contributed to the UK state scheme.

Have You Worked In The UK?

If you have been employed in the UK, you will have had national insurance and tax deducted from your pay under the PAYE scheme. Part of the national insurance is put towards your state pension, but if you then go to live in another country, that money just sits there in a pension pot.

The money can be transferred into a SIPP or a ROPS if you live in a country outside of the EU. The process is drawn out and complicated, and you will definitely need UK pension help to achieve this successfully.  Chatting with an organisation such as UKPensionGuru is the thing to do, as they have the experience, knowledge, and expertise you need to help you.

There Are Taxes To Consider

There is more than one way to get your pension pot transferred, but if it is not done in the right way, the taxman will want a cut. It could be that your total income takes you above tax limits anyway, but you at least want to know that the amount you have to pay has been minimised as much as possible.

Then, of course, there are the tax laws in your new country of residence to consider. The more you look into it, the more complicated it gets, which is why it is vital to seek the best UK pension help available for expats and people who have worked in the UK.

Let Your Pension Pot Make More Money

If you leave your money sitting in the UK pension scheme, it will not grow and make you any more money. Transferring it to a SIPP or ROPS is a different matter. Then your money will grow and over the number of years you have left to retirement, the difference can be quite amazing.

The amount of your pension when you retire will mean the difference between being able to do what you have planned or scraping by on a low income. The sooner you put matters in order, the better your pension will be. Don’t let yourself lose out just because retirement seems such a long way off - start looking for the UK pension advice you need now.

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The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada (NCFA Canada) is a cross-Canada non-profit actively engaged with both social and investment crowdfunding, alternative finance, fintech, P2P, ICO, and online investing stakeholders across the country. NCFA Canada provides education, research, industry stewardship, and networking opportunities to over 1600+ members and works closely with industry, government, academia, community and eco-system partners and affiliates to create a strong and vibrant crowdfunding and fintech industry in Canada.  For more information, please visit:  www.ncfacanada.org

 

 

 

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Etherparty Announces Global Crowdfunding Contest Valued at $300,000

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Etherparty Release | April 4, 2018

VANCOUVER, April 4, 2018 /PRNewswire/ - Etherparty Smart Contracts Inc. ("Etherparty"), a Vancouver blockchain technology company, is excited to announce the Rocket Three for Free contest, which will offer three projects or startup companies the opportunity to win full use of Etherparty's cryptocurrency crowdfunding platform, Rocket, free of charge.

The anticipation surrounding the launch of Etherparty's crowdfund creator has been steadily growing for months, and with the imminent arrival of Rocket, Etherparty has decided to hold a contest for startups looking to crowdfund using cryptocurrency. The smart contract solution developed by Etherparty called Rocket can be used on Bitcoin or Ethereum and is valued at USD $100,000.

Starting today, April 4, 2018, and running until April 30, 2018, applicants can submit a report, detailing their project, white paper and token purpose and functionality, along with company information including team LinkedIn profiles, social media channels, and Github, if public.

See:  Regulation Crowdfunding Surpasses $100,000,000 in Capital Commitments – Signaling an Industry that is Here to Stay and Reaching $1 Billion in the next 5 years

Once all of the applications have been submitted, short-listed companies will be interviewed by Etherparty's leadership team, and the three winners will be announced in May. In addition, outside of the three winners, Etherparty will be selecting up to 100 projects that will be able to receive a discount to launch their crowdfund with Etherparty.

"The contest is an amazing chance for a few young companies to harness the latest in crowdfunding technology at no cost, and no risk," said Kevin Hobbs, CEO at Etherparty.

Each winner will receive free token and crowdfund smart contracts, along with $20,000 worth in marketing services, to support their business and crowdfunding initiatives. The Rocket contest is looking to reward the best of the best, and Etherparty is excited to see what the community has to submit.

"We are looking for blockchain projects that are innovative and exciting, and we especially love projects that are problem-solving a large or global issue."

Only one submission per startup is allowed, and each submission must contain all of the required information to be eligible. To learn more about the Three for Free contest, visit contest.etherparty.com/threeforfree.

For continued updates, visit etherparty.com and subscribe to the company mailing list. You can also join the Etherparty conversation via Telegram, or on Facebook, Twitter, and BitcoinTalk.

About Etherparty

Etherparty is a blockchain technology company that develops end-to-end smart contract solutions powered by the FUEL token. Learn more about Etherparty and its software products at etherparty.com.

SOURCE Etherparty release


The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada (NCFA Canada) is a cross-Canada non-profit actively engaged with both social and investment crowdfunding, alternative finance, fintech, P2P, ICO, and online investing stakeholders across the country. NCFA Canada provides education, research, industry stewardship, and networking opportunities to over 1600+ members and works closely with industry, government, academia, community and eco-system partners and affiliates to create a strong and vibrant crowdfunding and fintech industry in Canada.  For more information, please visit:  www.ncfacanada.org

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Coinsquare’s CEO Is Focused On Expanding Services While Gaining Public Trust

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Betakit | Jessica Galang | March 15, 2018

Coinsquare CEO Cole Diamond says he gets anxious about being perceived as doing too much.

But it’s not enough for him to shy away from the company’s lofty expansion goals. Less than a year after hiring its first employee in April 2017, the company has hit 122 employees as it seeks opportunities beyond its cryptocurrency exchange platform.

On the heels of a $30 million funding round with Canaccord in February, the company is exploring several verticals: a white-labelled solution to power crypto exchanges in the US and UK; a wealth division that provides dedicated agents to customers trading $25,000 or more; a digital currency mining operation with several thousand machines in Quebec; and CoinCap Funds, which gives people the choice to diversify versus selecting what coins they want to invest. The company is also launching a Trading and Arbitrage division to take advantage of cross exchange opportunities, and hedge coin and currency exposures.

See: Canada’s Central Bank Issues White Paper on Government-Backed Digital Currency

“Within the next couple of months, we expect to have a true global footprint in the very near term. Ultimately, the mission statement of the business is to build a 21st-century financial institution,” says Diamond. “We want to help reduce friction across the financial services value chain for customers — I have credit cards, an e-trading account, money here and there, it’s hard to move them between one another. It’s hard to make a wire transfer to send someone a payment. We want to help reduce friction and create more automation.”

Diamond joined the company in 2016 after being impressed with the platform and its founder, Virgile Rostand, as one of Coinsquare’s first customers. Diamond put an investment in the company and immediately began working as its CEO; Rostand is currently president and CTO.

But in an industry that’s been mired in controversy — whether it’s banking execs calling bitcoin a scam or confusion from regulators — Diamond has his work cut out for him. BetaKit talked to Diamond about building Coinsquare into a legitimate financial institution, and the cryptocurrency landscape in Canada.

Public trust and regulation

As Coinsquare focuses on building technology, it’s also working to become more mainstream through a marketing campaign reminiscent of Wealthsimple’s push to brand itself as a lifestyle company several years ago. The company is undertaking a marketing campaign including billboards and TV commercials and relaunching its website with its team members visible to provide more humanness.

See: Wattpad, Wealthsimple and Overbond Join The Upside Foundation’s Challenge to Canadian Startups to Give Back

“We understand how the marketplace has been weird, but the maturity is now at that point where serious investors have an opportunity to work with a company that understands their needs and has built risk management tools and secure enough system in order to make sure they have the access they require,” says Diamond, pointing out that 98 percent of its assets are kept in cold storage offline.

“We need to operate under the assumption that we should be operating effectively like a bank.”

Dealing with regulators is a different beast; one of the most notable cases of friction between Canadian regulators and cryptocurrency is Kik, which decided not to host its ICO in Canada in 2017 due to lack of guidance from the Ontario Securities Commission, according to CEO Ted Livingston. Industry-wide, a lot of frustration stems from a lack of clarity on what constitutes a security.

See: Kik Blames Canadian Regulators for Skipping Country in ICO

Coinsquare currently only operates in Canada, which is by design with regulation in mind. “We thought we were a lot safer to take the approach of being focused within this country. The rules of engagement are different in Canada than they are in the US than they are in Europe, so why not just focus here and play along, and bring it to other markets later?” says Diamond.

However, this also means the company is leaving a lot of potential market untapped, both in the fact that they’re not reaching global customers, and making the choice not to host certain currencies, which keeps certain customers away.

“We leave a tremendous amount of money on the table by only allowing tokens that we believe are currencies, and in no way, shape, or form can a Canadian regulator look at that and call it security.”

To stay ahead of the regulation question, the company announced several execs from the banking world after its funding round as it looked to navigate compliance and its expansion. Its new CFO was a former VP at BMO, and it’s brought on a new chief operating officer, chief business officer, and a chief anti-money laundering officer from the financial world.

“We need to operate under the assumption that we should be operating effectively like a bank, under regulations that a bank has.”

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The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada (NCFA Canada) is a cross-Canada non-profit actively engaged with both social and investment crowdfunding, alternative finance, fintech, P2P, ICO, and online investing stakeholders across the country. NCFA Canada provides education, research, industry stewardship, and networking opportunities to over 1600+ members and works closely with industry, government, academia, community and eco-system partners and affiliates to create a strong and vibrant crowdfunding and fintech industry in Canada.  For more information, please visit:  www.ncfacanada.org

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Diiorio’s Decentral Inc. Teams up with Legal Firm to Architect Blockchain in Canada

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BlockchainNews |  Alex Behrens | Mar 12, 2018

Leading Canadian blockchain company and the creator of Jaxx, Decentral Inc. announced on Thursday a new strategic alliance with blockchain law specialist, Gowling WLG with the aim of optimizing commercial and legal applications of the technology.

Decentral Inc. was founded by Anthony Diiorio, its CEO, who is also Ethereum’s Co-Founder. The company’s best-known product is Jaxx, a multi-token interface, and wallet. Gowling WLG is a multinational law firm with deep experience in the blockchain space, and a dedicated Blockchain & Smart Contract practice group. The firm is also a co-founding member of the Blockchain Research Institute.

“Decentral’s relationship with Gowling WLG spans a number of years, and we are delighted to form an alliance that enables us to work even closer together on a number of transformative blockchain industry initiatives,” said Diiorio, in a statement. “Canada is one of the leaders on the world stage for blockchain and cryptocurrency and I am confident Decentral’s strategic alliance with Gowling WLG will further cement the country’s place as an innovation hub.”

See also:

As part of the agreement, Decentral will help Gowling WLG develop its internal blockchain infrastructure and client-facing tools. In return, Gowling WLG will provide comprehensive legal guidance on Decentral’s current practices and ongoing projects.

“As Gowling WLG continues to assert itself as the Canadian legal industry’s blockchain torchbearer, our collaboration with Decentral will ensure our clients have access to the cutting-edge tools and forward-looking expertise needed to succeed in an increasingly competitive landscape,” said Usman Sheikh, Head of Gowling WLG’s Blockchain & Smart Contracts Group.

Continue to the full article --> here


The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada (NCFA Canada) is a cross-Canada non-profit actively engaged with both social and investment crowdfunding, alternative finance, fintech, P2P, ICO, and online investing stakeholders across the country. NCFA Canada provides education, research, industry stewardship, and networking opportunities to over 1600+ members and works closely with industry, government, academia, community and eco-system partners and affiliates to create a strong and vibrant crowdfunding industry in Canada.  For more information, please visit:  www.ncfacanada.org

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BLOCKCHAIN, CRYPTOCURRENCY, ALT INVESTING – FFCON18: VELOCITY Conference (Mar 5-6, Toronto)

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FFCON18: VELOCITY

Blockchain | Cryptocurrency | Alternative Investing

Join Canada's leading financial technology and funding conference

Immerse yourself in blockchain, cryptocurrency, funding and fintech innovation through world-class education, workshops, and networking

Date:  March 5-6, 2018

Day 1:  Full day at the historic Design Exchange (234 Bay Street, Toronto)

Day 2:  Half day at Dentons Canada LLP (77 King Street West, Suite 400, Toronto)

Tickets:  $50 – $450

BLOCKCHAIN, CRYPTOCURRENCY and ALTERNATIVE INVESTING   The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada (NCFA) is proud to present FFCON18: VELOCITY (2018 Fintech and Funding Conference), an expanded 4th Annual of Canada’s leading financial technology and funding conference.   As Cryptocurrencies dominate the media scene, and the ICO frenzy is in full fledge can the Blockchain live up to the massive demand to deliver real life use cases and value to the customer, and can Fintech and Funding catch up with the changing landscape of the industry.

The theme is all about speed, efficiency and reducing friction: VELOCITY.  Accelerating the speed of blockchain and capital innovation, disruption, integration and adoption.   If you are a blockchain, crypto or fintech innovator, investor or a company actively raising capital or key decision maker/stakeholder in technology and capital markets innovation initiatives and programs, FFCON18 is a must attend event delivering the most comprehensive thought leadership, education, networks, investment and pitching opportunities to global participants.

If you are a fintech investor, a company actively raising capital or key decision maker/stakeholder in technology and capital markets innovation initiatives and programs, FFCON18 is a must attend event featuring immersive content, pitching, networking, workshops and meeting exchanges over 2 days.  Are you ready for the VELOCITY Blockchain speed?

Host:

Exclusive Presenting Partner:

Platinum Partners:

Diamond Partner:

KEYNOTE SPEAKERS

Lou Kerner: Co-founder and Partner, CryptoOracle.io

Keynote: The Future of Bitcoin and Crypto

 

Diana Adachi: CEO, Pegasus Fintech Inc.

Keynote: Exponential Value Inherent in Blockchain and Its Transformative Potential

 

Anthony Diiorio: CEO & Founder Decentral & Jaxx, Co-founder Ethereum

Keynote: Can Canada Remain at the Forefront of Blockchain Globally?

 

Sheldon Pollack: Chairman, Ov2 Capital

Keynote Interview: Scaling Fast and Defining New Industries

 

 

Brady Fletcher: Managing Director, TSX Venture Exchange at TMX Group

Keynote Interview: Scaling Fast and Defining New Industries

 

Eric So: Co-Founder, Managing Director and CSO, Globalive

Keynote: The Future of Distributed Ledger Technology and Machine Learning

 

 

Brittany Whitmore, CEO and Founder, Exvera Communications Inc.

FFCON18:  VELOCITY  Master of Ceremonies

 

Education +  Workshops + Innovation + Prime Networking

5 Streams, 50+ Speakers, 40 Sessions, 12 Pitching, 1x1 Mentoring

 Pitching Companies at FFCON18

Twelve high-growth companies have been selected from inbound applications to pitch live at the 4th annual Fintech and Funding Conference: VELOCITY (#FFCON18). These companies will be pitching in four sessions on March 5, to be led by McCarthy Tétrault, Techstars Toronto, Launch Academy and Brightspark Ventures. Congratulations to the 12 finalists!

  1. Cinchy
  2. Coder
  3. ColliderX
  4. Distributed ID
  5. FintruX
  6. Homewise
  7. JustGotThat! Inc
  8. KickCity
  9. Neptune Dash Technologies
  10. SENSO.AI
  11. Swiggle
  12. Voleo

One winning company will be chosen from each of the four live pitching sessions at FFCON18, determined by a panel of judges and the crowd. Winning companies will receive prize packages consisting of free Lean Startup Training Programs from Launch Academy, a complementary Press Release Package for North American distribution from ACCESSWIRE, a “Front of the Line” Golden Ticket from CBC Dragon’s Den and more! These tickets will guarantee the winning companies a chance to pitch in front of the infamous dragons at any of their Season 13 upcoming auditions.

The Conference, to be held from March 5-6, 2018, attracts blockchain, crypto and fintech innovators, investors, companies actively raising capital and key decision makers/stakeholders in technology and capital markets from all over Canada and around the world. Click here to view the full program.

Cinchy is the next evolution in database technology. Tier-1 banks are already using Cinchy as a smart alternative to application databases, saving millions and building enterprise systems 2-10x faster.
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Founded in 2015, Coder has built a decentralized venture development platform, aggregating the technology, strategy and growth resources required to execute on the delivery of new technology products.
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ColliderX is the world’s first open-source, crowdsourced, and crowdfunded blockchain research and development hub. This is a unique model for unbiased, ground-breaking R&D that bridges the gap between industry problems and pure academic or corporate research.
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DIID is the neighbourhood watch for fraud management. Monitor customer behaviour across all channels to enrich the tools your business uses to fight fraud.
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FintruX Network is a blockchain-based peer-to-peer lending ecosystem connecting borrowers, lenders, and rated service agencies. FintruX Network makes it easy for small businesses to quickly secure affordable loans with no collateral, in any currency.
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Homewise is a modern mortgage provider that brings a classic process online. Homewise is simple, transparent and sets the goal of getting our users the best mortgage.
JustGotThat! is a curated marketplace for everyday maintenance and repair services. Our customers are able to confidently find, book and pay for the services they need, when they need them.
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Decentralized Event Management & Marketing Protocol on Blockchain: imagine Eventbrite & Meetup.com on blockchain with an awesome reward system that enables effective marketing.
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Neptune Dash runs infrastructure for the Dash cryptocurrency network, specifically dedicated servers known as masternodes. We also build innovative technology that pushes the Dash currency to the next level.  TSX-V: DASH
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SENSO.AI is an enterprise SaaS Customer Experience Management (CXM) platform, which predicts mortgage churn for financial institutions. Our loan and geographic level visualizations provide retention and marketing teams with recommendations on how to increase retention, lifetime value, and the size and quality of their mortgage portfolios.  
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Swiggle automatically gets you money back when prices drop after you shop at retailers across the U.S. and Canada. We itemize your receipts, constantly search for lower prices and automatically get you the refund you’re owed.  
Voleo develops trading platforms for stock and cryptocurrency investment. Voleo’s namesake social trading app is live for US residents and available for white-label to financial institutions worldwide, while Cryptoleo will be launching for Canadians in 2018!  

 

Investors

Discover new blockchain, crypto and startup/scale-up deal flow opportunities and investment strategies. Gain access to high grow start-ups and leading-edge insights.

Professionals

Lawyer, accountant, marketing specialist or tech guru? Get access to emerging early stage companies, deal flow and partners through new financial instruments to generate revenue and leads for your practice.

Companies

Network and pitch your venture to investors, customers and partners. Learn about the latest funding strategies and options.

Enterprise

Connect with leading capital markets innovators, consultants, fintech and blockchain leaders to develop an internal sandbox, rapidly iterate, test, deploy a nextgen global solution.

Fintech Leaders

Celebrate the transformation of digital finance with fintech peers and share how you are unbundling and enhancing financial services, mint your brand while fostering global opportunities.

Policy Makers

Discuss and learn how emerging digital technologies will impact the future of financial transactions and services globally and what it means for existing regulatory cultures and policies.

Platforms & Ecosystems

Gain valuable industry insight and make new connections with customers, partners, investors, entrepreneurs and innovators.

Innovators

Join 500+ investors, entrepreneurs, hackers, and industry experts to learn, network and be inspired by leading-edge content and the power of co-creation, innovation, tech and the crowd!

TICKETS SOLD OUT!

Ticket widget not working? Click here to register on Eventbrite

Verified students get a special deal (email: info@ncfacanada.org)

WE ACCEPT CRYPTO! (email: info@ncfacanada.org)

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Europe’s banks brace for a huge overhaul that throws open the doors to their data

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CNBC | | Dec 29, 2017

Banks have long been at an advantage when it comes to data on their customers.

From current accounts to credit cards, established lenders have access to vast amounts of information that financial technology (fintech) competitors could only dream of.

In Europe, that could all be about to change.

On January 13, banks operating in the European Union will be forced to open up their customer data to third party firms — that is, when customers give consent.

EU lawmakers hope that the introduction of the revised Payment Services Directive (PSD2) will give non-banking firms the chance to compete with banks in the payments business and give consumers more choice over financial products and services.

See:

Britain's Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has set out similar plans to let customers share their data with other banks and third parties. With customer consent, U.K. banks will be required to give authorized third-party firms access to current account data.

Those regulations form part of a conceptual transition known as "open banking." Under an open banking framework, proponents say, non-banking firms — from corporations as big as Amazon and IBM to start-ups — would be able create new financial products by utilizing the data of banks.

What does it mean for banks?

Banks will be required to build application programming interfaces (APIs) — sets of code that give third parties secure access to their back-end data.

Those APIs serve as channels for developers to get to the data and build their own products and services around it. Such information could serve as a tool to understand things such as customers' spending habits or credit history, and could lead to the creation of new services.

"In a world of open banking, the customer can choose a provider in each part of the value chain. And each bank has to participate in the value chain as an earners' right to be there,"

Anne Boden, co-founder and chief executive of U.K. mobile-only bank Starling, told CNBC in an interview earlier this year.

Boden added: "You can't just assume you're going to have the end-to-end value chain. Barclays and HSBC and RBS, at the moment own everything in that value chain — the app, the back-end, they sell other products. In a world where everybody earns their right, you could have the app from HSBC and the back-end from Barclays."

Some European lenders are giving early signals as to what a post-PSD2 world will look like.

Spain's BBVA, Denmark's Saxo Bank, Nordic lender Nordea and Ireland's Ulster Bank have already published open developer portals ahead of the EU legislation.

HSBC has also made early moves toward meeting the incoming rules. In October, the bank launched a beta version of an app that lets customers see all of their bank accounts — including those from competitors — on one screen.

That development — known as "account aggregation" — is set to be a key component of open banking, encouraging collaboration rather than competition.

"I am cautiously encouraged by some of the progress we are starting to see around adoption (of) open banking-style principles by both emerging and existing financial institutions generally — banks or otherwise," Iain McDougall, U.K. manager at fintech firm Stripe, told CNBC.

See:  Who’s afraid of Brexit? Here’s why Canadian fintechs are flocking to London

McDougall said that commentators heralding the end of banks are misguided. "We certainly don't see it that way," he said.

What does it mean for tech firms?

Dozens of fintech firms across Europe are set to benefit from the updated EU directive, as banks' data will let them create new products.

Several small lenders set up with the aim of competing with larger institutions are hoping to take advantage of the move toward a more open data infrastructure. U.K. firms Starling and Monzo, for instance, are want to make banking more like a "marketplace," by connecting consumers with a number of products and services — including those from other providers — within their apps.

"Where we're going longer term is in marketplace banking, where we're trying to build Monzo into a control center, into a dashboard, a marketplace," Tom Blomfield, co-founder and chief executive of Monzo, told CNBC.

"So we do the day-to-day money management, but say for example you want a mortgage, that's not something we would provide," he said, "so actually we'll offer mortgages from other banks on our platform."

Another fintech company, MarketInvoice, has completely shifted its business model, changing from a digital invoice service into a lender on the back of the EU regulation. Its CEO and co-founder Anil Stocker said PSD2 would let it access data on small businesses and use tech advances like artificial intelligence to enhance credit ratings.

"I think the banks are starting to realize that this world they've had guarded around customer data for so long, now it's starting to open up," Stocker said in an interview at the time.

"Once you get into an open banking world, when you don't actually have to be a bank and you can manage a big balance sheet and have all the regulation that goes with it, it changes the game." -Antony Jenkins, founder and CEO of 10x Future Technologies

Some believe that tech giants such as Facebook, Amazon and IBM could be primed to disrupt banking, especially once lenders are forced to open their data vaults to tech firms.

Antony Jenkins, who served as the CEO of Barclays from 2012 until 2015, said it was uncertain as to whether a tech giant or small fintech firm was more likely to benefit the most from open banking.

"I think it's highly unpredictable," Jenkins said. "What is certain is there is going to be disruption."

See:  Why the bank referral scheme gives SME lending a much needed shake-up

Jenkins, who is now the founder and CEO of fintech start-up 10x Future Technologies, said that data junkies will be the biggest beneficiaries.

"All financial services products are just data. So companies that are very good at managing data are advantaged in this space. I would also say that once you get into an open banking world, when you don't actually have to be a bank and you can manage a big balance sheet and have all the regulation that goes with it, it changes the game."

He added: "That disruption could come from a fintech company, it could come from a tech company with really good customer relationships and a really good understanding of how to manage data."

Hurdles

Some worry that banks will be slow to respond, and that some will be reluctant to comply.

"Implementing open banking and making this happen is not something overnight. It's a tough journey for everybody," Starling's Boden said.

Indeed, the transition toward PSD2 has not been without friction.

In May, several fintech firms and lobbyists moved to fend off plans by the European Banking Authority to water down its open banking rules by banning a technique known as "screen scraping" — essentially copying data from one interface over to another.

"We saw the big banks suing start-ups like ours, trying to block them by any means." -Daniel Kjellen, founder and CEO of Tink


The National Crowdfunding Association of Canada (NCFA Canada) is a national non-profit actively engaged with social and investment crowdfunding, alternative finance, fintech, peer-to-peer (P2P), initial coin offerings (ICO), and online investing stakeholders across the country. NCFA Canada provides education, research, industry stewardship, networking opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, academia and eco-system partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and online financing industry in Canada.  For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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