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ICT Spring 2019: FinTech Summit

On May 21st & 22nd, a new edition of ICT Spring brought together more than 150 experts who shared their knowledge and discussed the latest Fintech and Digital trends. ICT Spring, a two-day event created in 2007 aims at facilitating the meeting of minds, encouraging emulation and networking with industry leaders, took place at the European Convention Centre Luxembourg, at the very heart of Europe. More than 5,000 professionals attended this two-day conference, during which the latest FinTech topics were discussed. Fintech experts discussed trendy topics such as sustainable finance, the future of Fintech, collaboration between startups and incumbents, and much more.

Beyond the 360 approach: the future of Fintech

On May 21st, on the first morning of ICT Spring, international experts discussed the latest Fintech trends during a session entitled “Behind the 360 approach”. They notably exchanged around the topics of Artificial Intelligence and new business models, in a session moderated by Pascal Denis, Partner & Head of Advisory, at KPMG Luxembourg.

Jean Hilger, CIO of BCEE and member of ICT Spring board officially opened the 10th edition of ICT Spring: “This event is an incredible success story. For instance, when you travel to China, people know Luxembourg for its steel industry, finance, but also for ICT Spring”.

He then welcomed Pascal Denis (Partner & Head of Advisory, KPMG Luxembourg) who acted as Master of ceremony: “We are looking at a holistic point of view of Fintech, which raises a wide range of concerns and questions”. He then asked a couple of questions to the audience: which Fintech do I need to partner with? Which funding models should I favour? How to protect against cyber risk? Pascal Denis also announced the official launch of the KPMG Lighthouse, approach to solve client issues with technology,” he added before introducing the next speaker.

Maurice op het Veld (Partner, KPMG Netherlands) gave a presentation entitled “In AI we trust?”, insisting on the question mark. “AI is everywhere: at work, in our lives, also in our social lives,” he started, before sharing a concrete example on the use of AI and analytics to predict cycling results, before even starting the race. He then explained that the trust and transparency factors were crucial when it comes to AI, from customer experience, to reputation and the brand. The expert then summarised two of the latest publications of the European Commission and CSSF, dealing with ethics in AI. “It comes down to the quality of the algorithm, its effectiveness, its integrity and also its resilience. First, you need to understand what kind of AI you already have in the organisation, and then map it. Ethical discussions are also key: what about corporate values and compliance?” he concluded.

Is it FinTech or TechFin?

Chris Skinner (Author, Speaker and Troublemaker) then took the stage: “Banks are still needed and they are seen as a trusted value store. The industry is regulated, which also reinforces trust. Yet, over the last years with have seen the rise of Fintech, which combines finance and technology. It is changing the face of finance, augmenting banks and taking friction out. It also helps with financial inclusion”.

The Fintech guru then compared the growth of Stripe and JP Morgan Chase, highlighting the fact that banks are trying to keep up with the changes linked to digital and Fintech. “Teenagers who can code are currently changing the landscape of finance and are creating the future of financial services. They actually want to change the system, but not necessarily by destroying banks, but rather by collaborating with them. It’s like a parent-child relationship,” he added.

Chris Skinner then shared the example of Ant Financial, which is developing all over the globe, and is now ranked as one of the top financial institutions in the world. The Chinese company puts tech first and is able to build and deliver innovative services to rapidly scale and develop globally. The expert also pointed out the fact that the company is adding green aspects to its ecosystem and that it is creating financial literacy in order to include everybody.

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  • Editorial Director of the The Fintech Times

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