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Fintech A.M.: 21.12.2017

The other side of the bitcoin: it’s all about the blockchain As is the case week after week, bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies continue to dominate news cycles. There’s excitement for both the currency and its underlying blockchain technology, but this enthusiasm is increasingly being met with a fair share of scepticism. On Monday, ING’s principal economist Teunis Brosens called bitcoin a “niche” product that has little long-term value for broader audiences. However, he does give praise to blockchain, saying that it is “an impressive technology that may bring progress in a variety of fields. Long live blockchain.” Moreover, in a survey titled “Trends in Fintech and Investor Communications” by Mediant, 30% of respondents chose machine learning and AI as the fintech innovations that would have the most impact on organisations in the coming 2-3 and 3-5 years, while 1% backed bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Respondents had significantly more faith in the impact of blockchain and distributed ledger technology than cryptocurrencies, particularly within the 3-5 year period, where 24% of respondents backed the technology and around 1% cryptocurrencies.

Amazon financial services?

This week, news outlets got wind that Amazon may be getting ready to invest in an India-based alternative lender for SMEs, Capital Float, further fuelling speculation that it will eventually dive in to the financial services market. This speculation regarding market entry also counts for Google and Facebook as well. To add, a survey by Accenture reports that about 1 in 3 banking and insurance customers around the globe would think about switching to Google, Facebook, or Amazon if these companies were in the financial services game.   By Elliot Lyons, Research Analyst at Holland FinTech]]>

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