The most read articles of the year: What we thought

By Alex Hammond | 27 December 2017

In 2017 bobsguide published in excess of 250 in-house articles express our opinion and insight on the evolution of fintech. Of those 250 articles, these were the articles from the last 12 months that resonated most with the audience.

Unsurprisingly AI and blockchain make an appearance, as does the evolving factor of consolidation in fintech.


 

Everything you want to know about blockchain but were too afraid to ask

lockchain has created a huge amount of buzz in the financial services industry since its official debut into the market in 2009. The question of when blockchain will go mainstream is yet to be answered, but there is constant speculation around the topic. However, the technology has been widely recognised by financial services and industries are slowly coming around to the idea of moving to a decentralised consensus system.

Blockchain technology is a useful tool that can be used to assist banks in trading assets, reducing back office costs, and helping with real estate transactions. As momentum builds behind blockchain, industries are realising the potential behind the technology.

But is the industry as knowledgeable about blockchain as perhaps we expect it to be? We’ve gone back to first principles and broken down an explanation of blockchain into what it is, why it’s powerful and what its main components are, to give a clearer understanding to the transformative technology.  

 

Is the Misys, D+H merger the first domino that will set off a fintech “super-merger” trend?

In a market which has been predicted to accelerate its M&A activity in 2017, the D+H acquisition is by a distance the most significant development we have seen this year to date.

But the development is perhaps much more significant than the value of the deal. That’s because Vista Equity partners already owns one of the biggest banking software development companies in the UK, Misys, and has made clear that it intends to fully integrate the two companies.

The merger will create a single company that will instantly be recognised as a global giant in the fintech industry, employing 10,000 people and generating in excess of $2.2bn of revenue. The clients of the combined companies currently span 130 countries and include 48 of the world’s 50 biggest banks.

 

How HSBC is using AI in its anti-money laundering compliance

Gurjeet Singh, co-founder and Executive Chairman of Ayasdi, spoke to bobsguide about the challenges of compliance with anti-money laundering, the characteristics of AI, and how AI is vastly improving false positive rates on suspicious security reports.

 

The impact of AI on fintech's future

It’s clear that artificial intelligence (AI) is already one of the defining trends in fintech in 2017 and an increasingly popular buzz word in the industry.

Businesses are gradually understanding the importance and benefits of machine-learning technology. Self-made billionaire Mark Cuban has boldly claimed that the “the world’s first trillionaire will be an AI entrepreneur.” He goes on to say that faster computer processers and large data sets have the ability to push AI into a wealth of industries and services.

He has a point. We have access to more data today than ever before, and with the increase of solution-finding apps that help consumers find patterns in their habits, businesses and start-ups, the bars are now high for the fintech industry.

As computers and robots begin to replace human efforts, even the most desirable jobs could be at risk. The financial services sector has been integrating machine learning into its practices primarily to cut time, cost and energy.

According to a report published by Accenture, investment in fintech has risen by 10% globally to reach $23.2 billion in 2016. The report also shows that the US holds the highest economic benefits for the integration of automated services, increasing its annual growth rate from 2.6% to 4.6% by 2035. In the UK, AI could reportedly add an additional $814 billion to the economy by 2035.

 

10 UK fintech companies to look out for in 2017

The fintech industry has seen tremendous growth in last decade. The sector now supports over 61,000 jobs and turns over billions in revenue for the British economy. The UK has grown in stature to be a global hub on the fintech stage, in terms of investment, employment and the number of fintechs in the market. A report by the UK government estimates that the UK fintech sector represented £6.6bn in revenue in 2015 and attracted £524m in investment. Therefore, consumer adoption of fintech is becoming increasingly mainstream.

And there’s a good reason why. London still leads the fintech industry for both start-up and regular corporate fintech companies. The British capital is holding its dominance for being the hub of the fintech industry, which may be due to the UK always benefitting from a strong FS industry and it’s well functioning ecosystem. The industry has evolved beyond simply accommodating financial services and banks and now holds an array of services aimed at all generations who can benefit from the fintech space. 

“The UK is the home of fintech- the powerbase of the City of London fused with the entrepreneurial energy of the capital, is proving a potent combination”, states Raconteur.

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