October 24th-27th sees the return of the US edition of Money20/20. Hosted live in Las Vegas, Money20/20 eschews any notion of webinars, remote conferencing, or hybrid events, and aims to bring in-person innovation back to the world of fintech events.
This year marks the 10th anniversary of Money20/20 Las Vegas, and the organisers have spoken a lot ahead of time about how there has been a conscious effort to make this year’s event unique, with larger stages, a greater number of speakers and a more diverse topic of discussions than ever before.
The Fintech Times has been bringing you regular updates throughout the event, with reports on the key highlights from each day, and analysis of the latest company announcements. Unfortunately, we have already come to the end of this unique event, as it wrapped up proceedings on Wednesday. Let’s take a look at what went down on the final day…
Tuesday’s Headline Sessions
We start things off with all things crypto, with a discussion titled “Look to Crypto for the Future of Regulation”. This panel formed part of the strand: “A Tokenized, Transparent, Trustless Tomorrow”, and featured the speakers Jo Ann Barefoot, CEO, Alliance for Innovative Regulation; Brian Brooks, Former Acting Comptroller of the Currency, Office of the Comptroller of the Currency. Matthew Van Buskirk, Co-Founder & Co-CEO, Hummingbird was the moderator for this session, which took place on the Serendipity Stage.
In this talk, the panellists discussed the fact that the crypto revolution has broken many regulatory models around the world, and how regulators have been trying to keep up with this rapid pace. They discussed how to solve problems such as adapting these new concepts into legacy frameworks, and how a regulatory system would look like in a decentralized world.
Next, as part of the “Striking Digital Gold” strand, we had “The Bank Charter Race”, a discussion that explored how several fintechs have recently undertaken the herculean task of applying for a bank charter, and how traditional banks have been pushing back against them.
Marina Gracias, General Counsel, Varo Money and Caitlin Long, Founder & CEO, Avanti Bank were speaking at this panel which took place on the Immersion Stage, with Michele Alt, Partner & Co-Founder, Klaros Group in charge of moderation. They discussed in detail this controversial process providing a perspective from both fintechs that have gone down the chartered path, and regulators balancing innovation with industry pressures.
Finally, we had “How State Regulation’s Agile Approach is Reshaping Fintech”, a discussion between John Ryan, President & CEO, Conference of State Bank Supervisors, and Melissa Koide, CEO & Director, FinRegLab, which took place on the Serendipity Stage.
Fitting in with the “Product Innovation Edge” theme, this panel discussed how the U.S. legal framework for financial institutions has fostered innovation in products and services by giving companies multiple ways to enter the market and by enabling bank/nonbank partnerships and other ways of scaling nationwide. They also explored how states are building a decentralized, efficient regulatory network, innovating and iterating on state licensing and regulation through novel platforms.
Money20/20: Further Company Announcements
Just because it was the final day of sessions did not mean that the slew of product announcements by various fintech companies slowed down at all.
Urjanet, an Energy management solution that assists firms of all sizes with utility billing, identity verification and reporting, announced that it is expanding its financial services and fintech offering to give financial applications the ability to utilise consumer-permissioned & utility data to power their underwriting, credit, IDV processes. This new solution provides organisations with access to alternative data sources accessing millions of underbanked consumers and create significant competitive advantages.
Next, we had an announcement from Transact Campus, the leading payments and credential solution provider for higher education, who are launching a payment platform for international students at higher education institutions to securely process international payments (tuition as well as fees) directly from the student account portal. Transact International Payments, integrates with Student Information Systems and supports over 162 countries, and aims to deliver quick processing times, competitive rates, global regulation and compliance tools, centralized account reconciliation, and multilingual 24/7 customer support.
Finally, we had an announcement from Valley National Ban (a subsidiary of Valley National Bancorp) who shared with Money20/20 attendees that it is creating a new digital payment platform designed specifically for cannabis-related businesses. Valley Pay, Valley’s new digital payment solution, will migrate cash usage to a secure, web application, easing the burden on cannabis operators who are reliant on cash transactions today. The application will allow cannabis-related businesses to provide their customers access to a compliant, secure and streamlined mobile wallet payment system.
“This new digital payment platform is the first of its kind servicing the critical payment needs of cannabis-related businesses,” says Stuart Cook, Valley’s Chief Digital Product Officer. “We see the reliance on cash and existing payments options as a big problem and have set out to help create a solution for our customers that is convenient and safe.”
That’s a Wrap for Another Year
The breadth of this event was impressive as well, with the five key themes covering most of the latest developments in the fintech industry. And, of course, there is something to be said for a full return to in-person, face-to-face events – there is clearly still an appetite for these types of meetups. Whilst Money20/20 Las Vegas is now over, there is still a range of events across the globe to look forward to over the coming months.