Europe’s FinTech start-ups told to focus on ‘credibility’

FinTech firms advised to focus on credibility when looking for partnerships with larger institutions.

By Jonathan Watkins & Paul Walsh

European FinTech firms have been urged to focus on their credibility in order to partner and collaborate with larger institutions.

Speaking at Sibos in Geneva, industry experts explained that such partnerships are crucial for both players as the industry looks to move forward.

“Two years ago we were talking about start-ups with tattoos, a year ago it was the ‘uberisation’. What we see in Luxembourg in FinTech is that start ups want to be regulated for two main reasons,” said Nicolas Mackel, CEO of Luxembourg for Finance.

“The first is credibility, its about confidence, you want to sell your product or your service you want consumers to feel confident about it and this confidence is what the traditional industry provides,” he added.

A report from Accenture earlier this year said that FinTech firms fell in one of two categories: they were either competitive or collaborative.

For the latter, many are appealing to large financial institutions for partnerships or investment.

The different techniques and methodologies are being developed, but on the side of start-ups, many are interested in partnerships with larger corporations, and getting to market is the toughest nut to crack,” said Wim De Waele, CEO of Brussels-based EggSplore.

Large financial institutions are exploring technological innovation in-house, although this doesn’t end their in-house operations. They are also looking to FinTech companies who are coming up with ways to replace outdated processes with new disruptive technologies.

David Dab, chief innovation officer, ING Belgium, highlighted the importance of FinTech firms maintaining clear business criteria when approaching the larger traditional financial institutions in EMEA. 

“For a FinTech start-up to succeed they need a great idea which is of use, a fantastic team, there must be strategic ideas. You need to find a senior sponsor/executive within the bank, who says ‘if this start up works’ it will create a solution for a problem,” he said.