Mercator Blog

A Glimpse into the Future: Finovate Europe 2014
Date: February 24, 2014
Research Team
A couple of weeks ago, I had the honor of attending Finovate Europe 2014 in London. Held in the heart of the city’s financial services, the event provided a platform for dozens of financial technology startups and more established companies from around the world to present their products and technologies. While the collection of presenters can best be described as eclectic, payment themes clearly emerged through the presentations.

The mobile phone’s significance in today’s international payments industry was a major theme throughout the presentations. Mobino is a Switzerland-based mobile-payment firm that wants to develop a global and easily accessible system (including for the unbanked and smartphone less population) that integrates into existing banking infrastructure and provides seamless payments. Tink is a Swedish-based personal financial management provider which is attempting to make PFM more interactive for consumers on their smartphones through social media.

Mobino and Tink are just two examples of emerging firms focusing on services outside of payments that a mobile phone can provide. Other presenters highlighted banking and loan products that streamline the consumer application process via mobile applications.

The growing importance of PFM as a tool financial institutions can and should provide to their members also was a major theme. About a dozen PFM providers from across Europe were at the show, making it clear this financial tool has significant market potential. Tink and established companies such as Fiserv and Meniga highlighted how their respective products provide customers with the most comprehensive, yet consumer-friendly approach to financial management.

Fraud management also was a major theme at the event.

Presenters demonstrated that to counter increasingly intelligent and capable cyber criminals, financial institutions should consider additional security elements such as biometrics. BehavioSec, for example, has a product that learns the speed and accuracy of consumers entering sensitive information such as passwords on a smartphone, which can provide real-time insight into potential fraud.

Over the course of the two-day event, there was no shortage of interesting presenters with innovate products, technologies, and even pitches from Daft Punk impersonators as AXA Banque in France presented their mobile wallet product Soon. Finovate Europe 2014 was an intriguing and ultimately rewarding experience and provided a small glimpse into firms that may one day key contributors in the global payments industry.

Follow Tristan on Twitter @THugoWebb.