Our team had a lovely trip to New York City to attend LendIt Fintech USA 2022 - and here are their key takeaways from the event.
Our team had a lovely trip to New York City to attend LendIt Fintech USA 2022 - and some themes stood out as we walked the convention floor and met with our peers.
1. Inclusivity & Visibility of Embedded Finance
One big theme we noted at LendIt was the presence of embedded finance - in discussions, in panel sessions, and within the digital banking ecosystem. It seems that banks and fintechs alike have all included embedded finance options into their strategies, for both B2B and B2C customers.
We saw how large banks are tired of spending billions on the upkeep of traditional systems, and instead turning to digital innovation to embed services, lower security risk, and prevent fraud.
2. Data is King
While digital innovation and embedded finance made up one over-arching theme, it's worth noting the sub-theme of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML); while often overestimated or misunderstood, AI & ML are data tools that are moving into the mainstream and becoming more accessible than ever, particularly in the finance space. These tools are being used for cash-flow underwriting, fraud prevention, and identity verification.
We also saw companies trying to innovate the way loans are approved; traditional reliance on credit scores & using FICO miss a lot of market opportunity, and we're seeing lots of companies (including Liberis!) go beyond by using data.
3. The Emergence of Crypto, DeFi, & Web3
While we've gotten used to the "Crypto Craze" over the last few years, many are now pivoting to DeFi (Decentralized Finance) & Web3 as the hot buzzwords; fintech innovation is increasingly incorporating blockchain technology, bringing previously-obscure tools into the mainstream. We noticed a few sessions touch on blockchain, DAOs, and why traditional banks needed to start taking crypto-currencies seriously.
Feeling lost among the jargon? Our Embedded Finance Club is a great place to learn more about Web3 and beyond; join here
4. Regulation Incoming
Fintech has forever changed the way money moves, and there's still space to grow and innovate. And while the Fed announced plans to launch FedNow, the launch is still a ways off - and the market cannot and will not wait. Many incumbent institutions as well as newcomer fintechs are working on solutions to move money faster via virtual cards, payment services, bridging cash and crypto, and more.
With all this innovation, it's natural to be wary of incoming regulation; while no hard policies have been set forth, we heard rumblings of regulations to come - and when these discussions truly start, we just hope there will be two-way communication, openness, and respect from all parties involved.
5. Enablement & Integration
We noticed a lot of vendors eager to enable APIs and connections; the key to a seamless user experience within financial services is a smooth integration along the channels that customers already use.
We also saw a lot of traditional companies simply trying to enable, facilitate, and complement embedded finance products. A customer-first mindset and underestanding of how to best serve customers is key to successful embedded finance innovation.
Overall it was an exciting few days in NYC.
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