Chris Skinner's blog

Shaping the future of finance


Are you a Chinese bull or bear?

I’m hearing murmurs of a financial crisis rising again.  It’s just rumours and gossip, but sometimes there’s no smoke without fire.  My forecast for another major global financial crisis was that it wouldn’t occur until the 2040s but, as James Dimon noted, a financial crisis generally appears around every seven years.  Not a big one,…

Africa is leap-frogging the financial world with mobile

Expanding on yesterday’s discussion of how MNOs are sweeping up business for the underbanked and unbanked, Igor Pesin of Life.SREDA posted a lovely update giving even more detail.  Here is how he saw things … Fintech in Rwanda: the place where Telcos are surpassing Banks in the financial sector Telcos dominate in the financial sector…

MNOs sweep up Africa at the banks’ expense

During the discussions at Dot Finance Africa, there was a very interesting dialogue about the mobile network operators (MNOs), with panels featuring Airtel and M-PESA.  It was interesting to hear them talking directly about how they focus upon the customer experience and their singular objective of convenience.  Both MNOs talked about customer convenience.  The convenience…

Should I buy some bitcoin now?

I’m being asked this a lot as the value of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies have increased ten-fold in the past few weeks.  Good for those who have some.  Bemusing for those who don’t.  There are a range of factors driving the rise in cryptocurrency prices, particularly the craze for Initial Coin Offering (ICOs).  An ICO…

Money Sandboxes Research

I recently had exposure to two industry reports that are worth bringing to your attention.  The first is the Innovate Finance research into Industry Sandboxes. Commissioned by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the UK regulator, the aim was to identify how Industry Sandboxes, rather than Regulatory Sandboxes, can help to create new services in finance….

Welcome to the Semantic Web

Last Friday, I presented a new theme around the Semantic Bank to the The Next Web audience. I also wrote a bit about it the other day here.  I thought I would expand a little more on the background to the Semantic Bank by talking in more depth about artificial intelligence, machine learning and deep learning, which…

The challenge of being a challenger bank

I recently met a start-up bank.  They were depressed.  Having submitted their third proposal for the bank, the regulator was still pushing back.  This felt familiar.   Having seen so many new start-up banks in Britain, I was familiar with the start-up process.  It involves hellishly detailed documentation showing effective plans, governance and funding.  The first…

This Town is coming like a Ghost Town

I grew up in an era of Ska music with the Specials, Madness and The Selector being regulars on the University circuit.  One song that brought back memories of this era played on the radio the other day: Ghost Town. The main line repeated throughout the song is This town … is coming like a…

Bitcoin isn’t a currency; it’s a religion

I’ve regularly got into confrontations with digital currency people, especially those who are believers in bitcoin, by saying things they don’t like to hear.  First it was my comment that you can’t have money without government.  They believe the currency is beyond control because it exists on a global network.  My contention is that money…

The Semantic bank

I have a keynote coming up on May 19 in Amsterdam with The Next Web, who I regularly write a column for now.  Here’s my latest one: I’m delighted to be speaking at TNW on May 19 in Amsterdam.  I wanted to talk about Digital Human, the theme of my next book, but the guys want me…

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Presentation at ZBP, September 2020, Warsaw, Poland

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Gaping Void's Hugh MacLeod worked with the Finanser