iGTB’s head of digital, Phil Cantor, was quoted this week’s Sunday Times in a special supplement focusing on financial services technology. A far-ranging article examining cutting-edge developments in financial technology, ‘Future gazing to when cash doesn’t exist’, gathered together leading industry voices to predict tomorrow’s key innovations in a swiftly transforming financial services landscape.
Cantor got straight to the heart of how technology has changed and will continue to change banks’ relationships with their customers:
“The biggest change we’ve seen recently is that for the first time in 350 years, banks are interested in their customers’ experience – customers used to have to go to the bank, now the bank has to come to them. In time, technology will help restructure the way banks work with customers completely. Right now, if I need a loan to pay an overseas supplier, that’s at least two departments at my bank. What customers need is a bank that can keep them liquid so they can order money into an account when they need it and pay it back when they have it.”
In particular, Phil pointed to Square – the payments platform now offering loans to its merchants without them needing to request one, by basing the loan on the transaction volume the merchant is processing and arranging for repayment directly out of the transaction stream.
The article went on to highlight two of iGTB’s latest technological innovations:
“Moving corporate banking closer to this fluid lending, iGTB recently launched sanctions screening, an AI which offers a natural-language contextual search of social media to identify high-risk clients, along with a wearables extension of its corporate banking digital enterprise platform CBX, offering the complete spectrum of its transaction banking and aimed initially at the Apple watch.”
Amongst other industry leaders quoted were Francisco Gonzalez, CEO of BBVA, who predicted that the next twenty years would see an entirely new financial ecosystem, one in which today’s 20,000 analogue banks will shrink to no more than several dozen digital banks. Jesse McWaters of the World Economic Forum foresaw “the triumph of the default card” (the one used most online and on mobile), which he expects to be a debit card, the death of the credit card, and digital currency systems modernising the payments infrastructure. Andy Masters, head of savings and wealth at KPMG, predicted banks would move from their traditional roles to become bona fide consumer brands and Paul Makin of Consult Hyperion stressed the financial inclusion aspect of technological innovation.
The article went on to explore the potentialities of quantum money, uncopiable personalised payment systems issued by “bleeding-edge” quantum computers, as well as the many possibilities of what it termed the “much misunderstood” blockchain, as developments which may well shape the future of payments and of identity.
The resounding message is that technology is likely to change the nature of payments – and of personal and corporate banking – out of all recognition, and organisations such as iGTB are helping banks and other financial service organisations remain at the forefront of innovation.
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