The Wirecard Saga

By now we are certain you’ve seen the many headlines about the Wirecard scandal. Over the years Wirecard had been the rising star of Germany. It had replaced Commerzbank on the Frankfurt stock exchange and, at its peak, Wirecard was valued at over EUR 24 billion. So where did it all go wrong? Read more

Performance of neo banks in times of COVID-19

In recent years, we have witnessed the steady rise of digital challenger banks, also referred to as neo banks. It seemed that the only way was up, but COVID-19 halted the growth. We analysed neo-banks’ performance using our Fincog Challenger Bank Index, across various categories, regions and even for individual neo banks. Read more

Fintechs: Tips for weathering COVID-19

We’ve all been affected in some way or another – whether it is your own or a loved one’s health; living in a country in lockdown; or having a business temporarily on hold or closed. Now more than ever people need support and strategies for staying afloat (mentally, physically, and fiscally). In this blog we share our views on COVID-19’s impact on fintech along with actions fintechs can take in the short-term. Read more

Putting Challenger Banks on The Path to Profitability

We previously highlighted that the challenger bank’s revenue and profitability have generally not yet matched expectations. We have performed another benchmark on leading international challenger banks. While it’s a mixture of players, they share that they are all profitable. Our benchmark provides interesting learnings for success. While the path to future profitability differs per player, we have defined four strategic initiatives that challenger banks can undertake to drive revenue and become profitable. Read more

The Profitability Challenge for Challenger Banks

There has been a strong growth of challenger banks in recent years. Despite their strong growth, however, their revenue and profitability are lagging behind. We have benchmarked some of the leading international players on their propositions and financial results. Overall, a less-active customer base combined with a limited product portfolio at lower margins, leaves many challengers with low income per customer and often negative profitability. Read more

The Netherlands: A well-functioning banking market that still offers some interesting opportunities.

The Netherlands has a well-functioning banking market, with one of the lowest cost of banking services, good quality of service, and low defaults on lending. However, there are still some interesting opportunities in specific niches. This article provides an overview of the Dutch banking market and explores potential opportunities for financial service providers. Read more

How are CVC funds of Dutch banks structured and where do they invest?

In the previous blog of the series, we discussed why companies should set up Corporate Venture Capital (CVC) funds, common pitfalls and key factors required for success. In this follow-up blog, we focus on CVC funds established by financial institutions, especially by Dutch banks. This blog examines these fintech funds in detail and how they can be further improved to capitalize potential. Read more

Can banks stop the platforms eating financial services?

Online ecosystems like Amazon, Google, Facebook, eBay, Alibaba, and GO-JEK bring people together to contribute, interact, buy, sell and more. They’ve already irreversibly changed the retail landscape. Now, by introducing financial products like payments and consumer credit, they are jeopardising the position of banks. What can banks do to secure their future position? Read more

Neobanks Are Setting the Benchmark in Banking

Over the past years we have witnessed a steady rise of challenger banks, or neobanks, in Europe. These newly established retail- and SME banks are competing with (or ‘challenging’) the established banks with modern banking propositions tailored to the digital world. Read more

How to run a successful CVC and capitalize on its potential

Corporate Venture Capital (CVC) is more popular than ever before. However, many CVCs fail to meet their objectives, either strategic or financial. As part of a series of articles on the role of CVCs in the fintech ecosystem, this first blog examines the reasons for establishing a CVC fund, common pitfalls and key factors required for success. Read more

Investing in fintech potentially offers great returns, but good management remains key

Investing in fintech remains popular, with much investment activity and an overall higher valuation of organisations within the field. Who, then, are the investors in fintech, what do they invest in and what is their investment rationale? Read more

It’s all quiet at the PSD2 front… yet

Over the last months we have helped a large universal bank to explore potential new opportunities under PSD2. In this blog we argue that PSD2 has set a long-term change in the market, and share four type of use cases we have identified by using a customer journey map. Read more

The future of banks in the PSD2 era

What may be the future of banks under PSD2? How might banks adapt to PSD2? In this blog we share our ideas Read more

How can banks turn their competitive advantage into strategy?

In his previous article, Jeroen de Bel explained how competitive advantage is designated by the market environment and competitors. How can banks best identify their competitive advantage and turn it into a strategy? Read more

How can banks maintain a competitive advantage?

In his previous article, Jeroen de Bel explained how fintech start-ups are changing the rules of the game for banking. How, then, can banks determine their competitive advantage and best position themselves in the market? Read more

Fintech start-ups and banks, potentially a win-win relationship

New fintech companies are born every day, and can offer many services more efficiently than banks. How should banks respond? Read more