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Data is the new currency

There’s a constant buzz about disruption, which kind of sounds like destruction to me. We have to realize that no one is going to destruct or even possibly disrupt banks. No one. It has not happened in my lifetime of working with technology in banks, and I don’t think it …

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Why distributed ledgers aren’t working (yet)

I spent a day facilitating a series of roundtable discussions focused upon distributed ledger technologies (DLT). I realised that there’s a lot of confusion around the subject. Hell, even I’m confused most of the time even after dedicating hours to the subject. When is a distributed ledger needed? What’s the …

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Why Nations Fail

I was recently at a Capital Markets conference in Turkey where the main first day keynote speaker is Professor James A. Robinson from the University of Chicago and co-author of Why Nations Fail, a book that changed thinking about what makes for successful countries and what makes them fail. I had …

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Kim Jong-un isn’t that clever … is he?

OK, so I said earlier this week that I normally get asked about security by someone who is threatened by the onwards march of digitalisation. Sure, security is important, and the issue is that for every step of innovation we create a step of risk. We don’t know the risks …

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Bill Gates is wrong

Many people delight in digging up a quote from Bill Gates in the 1990s, when he was talking about banks as dinosaurs and famously stated: “we need banking, but we don’t need banks anymore”. Yay! We can stuff the horrible big, bad banks and replace them with lovely tech. Interestingly, …

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Most bank names are meaningless

Why are most bank brands just acronyms? I know it’s a silly question, as banks are acronyms because who wants to say John Pierpont Morgan Chase when it’s easier just to say JPM, but it is endemic to banking that banks are acronyms. I was just writing down a few: …

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