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#KlarNAAA? Is #BNPL a good or bad thing?

Five years ago, I interviewed Niklas Adalberth, Co-Founder, Deputy CEO and Board Member at Klarna. He left the company shortly after, and is now a venture capitalist at Norrsken. At the time, Klarna was relatively unheard of, but the interview intrigued me at the time. It was all about an escrow style service, as people…

Stripe: the Amazon of finance?

I hadn’t realised the significance of Stripe’s recent press release until I stumbled over the Stratechery write-up over the weekend. Stratechery points out that Stripe has gone from a simple merchant checkout API to a platform of platforms. The significance of that? Well, think of the Amazon of finance: that’s Stripe’s ambition. So, what was…

Is bitcoin becoming respectable?

As bitcoin’s pricing goes up and down as usual – almost $18,000 today (who bought a few for a $1?) – it seems like the world is moving towards cryptocurrencies, as they are now respectable. They’re not respectable in the eyes of governments and banks … Bitcoin has no role in institutional or retail investors…

The ABC of CBDCs

I’ve been talking quite a bit about CBDCs lately. CBDCs? Central Bank Digital Currencies. Central banks worldwide are looking at digital currencies as a great new future. Instead of letting citizens move to bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies, have ours. Well, that’s the idea anyway. China was leading the way here, and has trialled a digital…

Friction-free commerce: what are you doing    

During this health crisis, everything has changed a lot. We are at home, home schooling, home learning, home entertaining, home working and more. Great. That’s all good. Yes and no. Mental health has become a big issue and is something everyone is talking about more as, after all, if you say at home for days,…

As Treasury moves into cryptocurrencies, what’s your view?

It’s been interesting to see two major firms – admittedly FinTech firms – commit to crypto in the past month: PayPal and Square. The fact that such big processors are committing is a sign of the times and a move towards many organisations embracing the cryptocurrency world. If you didn’t see it: PayPal steps into…

Europe’s flagship payments system died for 11 hours

Over a decade ago, I curated a book about Europe’s Singe Euro Payments Area (SEPA). I was quite boring ten years ago, before FinTech made me cool. However, I still watch SEPA, the PSD regs, MiFID and more. I’m still a bit boring underneath it all. I don’t blog about it, because the audience for…

The post-COVID payments perspective [an interview with GPS]

I’ve talked about Global Processing Services, GPS, a few times now. They’re the power behind payments processing at several major start-ups like Curve, Revolut and Starling Bank. Anyway, during this crisis, I decided to have a chat with them in more depth and interviewed Shaun Puckrin, Chief Product Officer. You may find it enlightening. An…

Are our payment systems irrelevant?

I bumped into this article on The Economist the other day, which postulates that the existing financial system could be replaced. SWIFT, VISA, MasterCard and other regional and national systems like BACS, CHAPS, CHIPS, Fedwire and such like, were all created in the 1970s or thereabouts. They’re fifty years old. Nothing wrong with being old…

The FinTech unicorn created by an old bank #SBI #YONO

Someone rightly pointed out that I talk a lot about Ant Group but not enough about other major initiatives like YONO, the mobile wallet of India. India is also a hotbed of innovation, with Google and Amazon fighting out the financial payments space alongside other players like PayTM and SBI, the State Bank of India….

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