Fintech companies - businesses that harness technological advances to challenge the existing financial system and the way things have traditionally been done - appear to be riding the post-Brexit storm with genuine confidence.
To the fore of this mini revolution are companies developing apps for stock market trading, websites that will help create entirely new currencies, and revolutionary new payment technology. All these ideas will change the way finance works.
With this Fintech revolution comes a clutch of new ideas about the way money can work with technology. One is that a peer-to-peer financial model allows its users to operate outside the usual constraints of the world of finance. Traditionally a few institutions served the many at great cost to the latter. Now the idea is that a connected worldwide community can support itself financially, as long as the right infrastructure is in place. Led by the success of projects such as Bitcoin, this idea of decentralisation from banks is taking hold, and an entire ecosystem of exciting financial services is emerging.
TransferWise, a London based peer-to-peer foreign exchange service, is just one of these companies, and is tipped as ‘one to watch’ for the way it is disrupting the financial exchange industry to give power back to the consumer. The company’s founders have backed the idea that peer-to-peer financial services are where the future lies for financial exchange: by embracing the power of the community, those who want to swap currency do not have to use the bank.
Elsewhere. Squawker is an equity negotiation platform which allows for personal interaction between users and is reportedly free of algorithms and high-frequency trading. Squawker uses opaque social networking technology to combine personal interaction with end-to-end FIX workflows, compliance monitoring and audit trails. Neither a traditional trading exchange, nor dark pool, nor an MTF, Squawker is an inter-dealer trading platform that marries the best of the electronic and trader-to-trader environment to match trading counterparts based on price, display, quantity and then time priority.
Another revolutionary Fintech startup, Tide claims to be the ‘world’s first’ mobile-first banking service for small businesses. Customers can set up a business current account in seconds and get instant access to all the financial services they need to run their business in a simple online/mobile environment. Tide’s mobile app will literally read your ID — such as a passport — and establish your identity. It then lets you set up a business current account in 3 minutes or less. Benefits include no set-up, monthly or annual fees.
It is abundantly clear - an entire ecosystem of exciting financial services is emerging.