Chris Skinner's blog

Shaping the future of finance


What gender is your bank?

I’ve recently wondered about the movements to recognise gender-status in banking. For example, a headline appeared saying that the Halifax Bank, part of Lloyds Banking Group, was stupid for allowing someone to be recognised as she/her/hers. It didn’t go down well with some people … But it is a thing. Pronouns count, and banks are recognising…

What is identity?

I’ve been close to Peter Vander Auwera for many years, thanks to Innotribe. He retired a few years ago on bitcoin – I wonder how many times I will use that line? – and became an artist. Great guy. But he’s still tracking me and others in the Finverse and posted this yesterday. It’s so…

The niche market banks and fintechs are missing

Thing is, when it comes to inclusion, what financial products would you create for people who are blind, deaf, have lost limbs and more? I’ve seen people debating this point over the years, but I haven’t seen much done. Talking ATMs with brail numbers is about it. Thing is, as mentioned yesterday, this is a huge market…

15% of the world’s population has a disability

15% of the world’s population has a disability. According to the Return on Disability Group, this consumer population is bigger than China and accounts for $1.9 trillion in disposable income. That makes me wonder why banks and companies don’t focus upon them more. Interestingly, seeing the Paralympics coming up, disabilities like losing a leg are…

Banking is inherently sexist

Actually, it’s not just banking. It’s money. Money is about control – something I blog about regularly – and men control societies, economies and the world. Women are subjugated in that world, which is why there is a minority of female founders of FinTech firms and female executives in the leadership team of banks. But…

Tencent’s WeBank runs accounts for just 50 cents a year

I recently attended a FinTech conference where Henry Ma, Vice President & Chief Information Officer of WeBank, presented an update of how the bank is faring in China. For those unaware, WeBank is the offshoot of WeChat Pay, WeChat and Tencent, and focuses upon financial inclusion in China. This may be surprising for some, as…

Banks need a purpose other than making money

I wrote a couple of recent blogs about the issue with finding good developers and attracting them to banks. The first, about the war for talent, made the statement: the main motivation of developers joining a firm is to solve interesting problems. The second, titled When code is art, how do you attract great artists?, talked…

Why is financial inclusion a good thing?

Whilst at the United Nations they had me doing various activities, one of which was a panel for UNTV. The panel comprised Elliot Harris, UN Chief Economist; Matthew Blake, Head of Future of Financial and Monetary Systems, World Economic Forum; and was moderated by Gillian Tett, Editor-at-large, Financial Times. You can watch the short discussion…

Digital finance includes everyone (speech transcript)

I thought I would share my speech at last week’s UN meeting and the short version is summarised nicely by the UN’s press page: Chris Skinner, an author and commentator from the United Kingdom, discussed the promise of “fintech” — which integrates finance and technology — to extend financial services to more people in ways…

Time for a global FinTech platform?

I find it interesting when I read perspectives on FinTech, money and banking. Going digital, getting rid of branches, becoming cashless seem to be the main themes, and yet this ignores that every part of the world is different. It’s hard to go digital if the country has little infrastructure; it doesn’t make sense to…

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