Late September saw the return of the biggest Fintech event in the European Calendar: Money20/20. If you don’t know already, Money20/20 is one of the world’s leading, premium content, sales and connections platforms, with a focus on the global money ecosystem and the fintech industry. They host yearly events in Europe, Asia and the USA, that are usually well-attended by professionals from across the world of financial services.
Known for creating a multi-day event like few others, Money20/20 has received an additional boost by taking place in a physical venue, with real-life fintech professionals in attendance. After more than a year of virtual or Zoom-based events, attendees and speakers alike had a spring in their step as they took advantage of all of the benefits that face-to-face interaction offers.
Here at The Fintech Times, we have produced a short summary video from our time at the event, allowing you to get a real feel for what a Money20/20 event looks like, or to simply re-live the nostalgia.
This year’s Money20/20 Europe took place in Amsterdam from 21st – 23rd September, and welcomed over 4,000 people (many of whom are Executive or Board level) with more than 1,500 companies in attendance.
The agenda for this year’s Money20/20 was split up into a number of different themes.
The what: Creating products you can’t imagine
The who: Defining a new cast
The how: Developing a regenerative gene
The where: Designing an intelligent environment
The what next: Finding problems for solutions
Key highlights from day one of the event included:
“How do we make the point of purchase the trigger for a cascade of other, more interesting, interactions?” Part of “The what: Creating products you can’t imagine” series at Money20/20, Sanjib Kalita, Guppy CEO & Money20/20 Editor in Chief, moderated this event, which featured Daniel Marovitz, Senior Vice President, FinTech, Booking.com as the headline speaker.
This talk focused on looking at how it is possible to turn a payment, from a moment of transaction, into a long-lasting relationship. And, as the Senior Vice President at one of the largest global e-commerce companies, Daniel Marotivz was able to offer his own very unique perspective on the importance of the experience with the financial elements of their platform in building a significant relationship. Daniel also took the time to share how his organisation develops new products, whilst looking to continuously add value to the user’s experience with the platform.
Next, we had a discussion hosted by Karen Tso, Anchor, CNBC Europe, that featured Paolo Bertoluzzo, CEO at Nexi as the main speaker. In this event, they explored the question of “How do we compete in highly consolidated industries?”
Organisational and product roadmaps have to serve your business goals. How do you align them if your goal is to become the largest paytech player in Europe? With the completion of SIA acquisition, Nexi will fulfill its dream of becoming the largest payments group in Europe. Since 2016, the company has been on an ambitious journey of acquisitions and ruthless focus on becoming the largest, most specialized company in end-to-end payment management across Europe. But in payments, competition is never over. At a scale of over 2.4 million merchants and over 160 million cards managed, the CEO of Nexi is divulging the hallmarks of competition and key factors of success in one of the most crowded sectors in the financial services industry.
Finally, we looked at “What would cross-border trade with zero intermediation look like?” The speakers on this panel covered a wide range of industry areas and brought with them a wealth of experience. They included Jed Rose, General Manager for EMEA, Airwallex; Tyrone Lobban, Head of Blockchain Launch, Onyx by J.P. Morgan and Massimiliano Alvisini, Senior Vice President & General Manager, Europe, CIS &, Africa, Western Union. Ricky Knox, Chairman at ForMore, was the moderator for this event.
During this discussion, the panel explored what it would look like to remove all intermediaries from the movement of money across borders, and asked the question that, if we accept decentralised ledgers as the technological basis for cross-border payments, how do we manage risk and liability? Also up for debate was the issue of how best to adopt CeFi and DeFi, in order to remove friction and cost in doing business and facilitating payments across borders.
The second day of Money20/20 featured a bumper crop of talks, discussions, and panels, with several key headline sessions.
One of the early events taking place this morning was a discussion about Stock Exchanges, and exploring whether or not they are still relevant in the ‘new economy’. Olga Zoutendijk, Board Director, Julius Bär Group, led the discussion, and she was joined by Julia Hoggett, CEO of the London Stock Exchange plc.
During this talk, Julia Hoggett shared her vision for the ongoing purpose of one of the world’s oldest stock exchanges as a force for good in society, and on how the London Stock Exchange can manage the ongoing demands of the modern economy. Modern demands, of course, include adapting to the changing needs of issuers and investors and the fast pace of technological change. Also up for debate was ESG, and how it will drive the activities of the London Stock Exchange as a venue, and the London Stock Exchange Group as a whole, going forwards.
Later on in the morning, Karen Tso, Anchor at CNBC Europe, led a session on “How do we empower SMEs to take on the likes of Amazon?” It’s an interesting question indeed, and attempting to provide an answer to it were Adriaan Mol and Shane Happach, the Founder and CEO of Mollie Payments, respectively.
In this panel, they agreed that the task of taking on e-commerce juggernauts like Amazon isn’t one for the faint of heart. With the hindsight of what led to the creation of Amazon, they set out how Mollie Payments has the foresight to what the next stage for SMEs should look like. They also tried to explore what have we solved for, and what is it we haven’t yet.
One of the final headline sessions of the day saw Shola Akinlade, the Co-Founder & CEO of Paystack, outline how you can build local infrastructure and, at the same time, take it global. Hugo Amsellem, VP, Creator Accelerator, Jellysmack, moderated this talk.
Shola’s company, Paystack, is a growth engine for a new generation of innovative, forward-looking organizations operating in Africa, with an ambition to build a pan-African payments infrastructure. Shola explained how he is looking to expand the company’s horizons beyond the home market, and how Paystack is capitalising on African payment infrastructure opportunities and building innovative solutions that not only contribute to increasing regional online GDP but are scalable beyond their home markets too.
The third and final day of Money20/20 was action-packed, with a number of must-see headline sessions bringing the week to a conclusion.
There were two key headline sessions taking place. First up, there was an intriguing question up for discussion: “How do we get from the hearts to the wallets of the fan economy?” Debating this topic were Adam Pearsall, Founder of +QNTMPAY, Gareth Dunsmore, Chief Marketing Officer, McLaren Automotive, and Nigel Verdon, CEO & Co-Founder at Railsbank.
We all know about the infectious passion that fans put into supporting brands they love. However, it is an energy that the financial services industry perhaps isn’t yet harnessing. Working for McLaren, Gareth was able to offer his opinion on how it may be possible to marry the magic of F1 with finance and, in the process, build unbreakable bonds between fans and brands they love. Carla Buzasi, President and CEO at WGSN moderated this discussion, which formed a part of the Money20/20 agenda theme called “The what: creating products you can’t imagine.”
Next up, there was a discussion based around a recurring topic: “What role should banks play in the financial services industry of the future?” The lead speaker for this event was Ana Botín, Executive Chairwoman at Santander Group and PagoNxt. Santander has recently spun out PagoNxt, an autonomous technology company that comprises their payments businesses. In conversation with Karen Tso from CNBC, Ana shared her vision for the future of Santander and the strategy behind the creation of PagoNxt and their ambitious expansion plans.
Also up for discussion were the macro trends in European regulation. Ana believes that sweeping reforms are needed to support financial institutions and their recovery from the recent economic downturn. This riveting session was part of the Money20/20 agenda theme called “The how: developing a regenerative genre.”
All good things, of course, must come to an end. And sadly, so does Money20/20. Alongside the interesting sessions, thought-provoking questions and sparkling debate, Gina Clarke, the Editor-in Chief of The Fintech Times managed to catch up with Tracey Davies, President of Money20/20. In a video interview, the pair discussed producing a European event during the pandemic, and what little surprises Tracey had worked into the agenda this year.
While Money20/20 Europe is now over, there will be more to come throughout the year as it re-emerges this October in Las Vegas as Money20/20 USA. You can catch more upcoming content from The Fintech Times and the Money20/20 team during the event.