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Shaping the future of finance

Case Studies

Square grows up and becomes a bank

This week I’m going to continue looking at mobile payments with a quick overview of where Square, Jack Dorsey’s card payments firm, is today. I’m sure you all saw this headline the other day but, just in case, Square is now worth more than Goldman Sachs. Square! Square. Squared. I used to blog about Square…

The rise of the mobile wallet

I first started blogging about smart mobile wallets in earnest in 2014. Back then, the mobile network operators were starting to get active and to try and bring the M-PESA and other experiences to the modern world. But no one wanted them. Six years later, mobile wallets are still pretty dire in most of Europe…

Financial Services Clouds (an interview)

I was recently asked to interview Likhit Wagle, General Manager, Global Banking Industry, IBM, regarding their new IBM Cloud for Financial Services™ offering. The discussion was interesting so sharing it here for posterity.  Chris Skinner: Cloud is something we’ve been discussing for over a decade. Why has it taken so long for banks to…

A challenger challenges back

After writing quite a lot challenging the challenger banks, one reached out to me asking for a slight correction of view. OakNorth. Now, this is a bank I like, as they’ve been doing so much under the radar, so I said that if they wanted to raise their head above the parapet, why not write…

Should you invest in Ant Group’s IPO?

As someone who’s followed Alibaba, Alipay and Ant Financial – now Ant Group, btw – for a long time, I cannot let their IPO appear without comment. If you haven’t spotted it, here’s coverage in The Wall Street Journal: Ant Group Co., the Chinese financial-technology giant controlled by billionaire Jack Ma, revealed how highly profitable…

When the banks closed, no-one cared

A great headline posted in The Financial Times the other day:  When the banks closed in Wuhan, nobody cared The Financial Times article makes clear how advanced the Chinese economy is today. For several months this year, banks across Hubei province, an area home to 60 million people, shut their doors to retail customers. Most…

FinTech challenger and neobanks in Brazil

I stumbled across a great article about Brazilian neobanks the other day. Bearing in mind that Nubank is the most successful neobank in the world, with 25 million users at the start of June. As a result, when I saw a great article about banks in Brazil by Contexto, who cover FinTech LatAm, could I…

Pay-by-Nose, a new innovation

I blog regularly about what a fanboy I am of Chinese technology giants Alibaba and Tencent. It’s getting a bit ridiculous now however, when payments companies are designing payments for cats and dogs … or maybe it’s not … it’s just an extension of technologies that work for humans. My last blog on this subject…

The real reason HSBC and Standard Chartered aren’t talking

OK, OK, OK. I said this blog is not political, but it’s got a bit that way this week after my comments on HSBC and Standard Chartered, China and Hong Kong. In fact, I feel I’ve opened a bag of hornets and therefore I’m not going to continue this theme further … but do feel…

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