How to choose the right IT Vendor for your digital bank

IT Vendors and digital solution providers have experienced a growing spur during Covid-19 bringing with them various options and driving countless new banking technology solutions. Along with the growing number of IT providers, banks now have a large pool of solutions to choose from. However, making the right choices is crucial and can ultimately determine the success or failure of the organization. Based on our experience, we have put together the major steps to take when choosing an IT Vendor for your digital bank. Read more

Applying for a financial services license

Applying for a financial license marks a significant time and monetary investment with a certain risk factor not to be successful. However, by being well prepared and following a structured and targeted process, you can drastically improve the chances and efficiency of a successful license application independent of which type of banking or fintech license you are applying for. In today's blog, we therefore present 5 essential steps and key success factors to take in mind when applying for a financial serviceslicense. Read more

How to choose the right regulatory regime for your bank

Financial services are heavily regulated and before being able to provide such, one typically needs a regulatory license in some form. Licenses differ in their scope of permitted activities and requirements on the organization. Additionally, regulatory frameworks also vary across jurisdictions and types of financial services provided. This blog post aims to provide an overview of existing licensing regimes across the world and help new digital banks in making the right choices. Read more

Digital Banking in Latin America

The Latin American region is currently undergoing one of the largest digital transformations in the world. It continues to stabilise a high level of digital adoption, while also ensuring financial inclusion to the unbanked population. This report investigates the current digital banking landscape of the region, summarizes propositions and strategies of various selected players and provides a list of carefully assessed action points and imperatives to enter the market and establish your digital bank. Read more

The Global Phenomenon of Buy Now, Pay Later

While it is debatable in what country buy now, pay later first began, the rapid expansion across the globe has allowed for new types of consumer financing solutions to evolve quickly. New entrants seemingly launch weekly, and product and geographic extensions from existing players just as commonly. Together with Jason Mikula from Fintech Business Weekly, we have created a global industry primer discussing the in and outs of BNPL. Read more

The Rise of Digital SME Lending

Despite being a key operational concern, the largest business segment of the European economy struggles to adequately access financing. Capitalizing on this mismatch, a number of new digital players have stepped up, revamping the lending process to develop accessible propositions that are tailored to SMEs. We take a closer look at these new digital lending propositions as well as the challenges that they must address. Read more

Four Things Incumbents Can Learn From Neobanks

In the last 5 years, we’ve seen the number of digital banks grow at a terrific speed. Their modernized services, unrelenting approach to customer-centricity, and innovative tech stack have taken the banking industry by storm, encouraging the entire industry to rethink how financial services are done. We put together four of the main lessons incumbents can learn from the new digital banks. Read more

How to successfully build a digital bank?

Over the last decade, there has been a rise of digital banks. Nevertheless there are still ample digital banking opportunities in selected niches and geographic markets. The question is then how one could seize this opportunity and successfully launch a digital bank? This whitepaper offers a practical guide to help you from start to finish with hands-on information and takes you through each step of the process. Read more

Four steps to a successful digital transformation

We have entered a digital era where the pace of technological innovation seems to have become the main driver of change. The current environment forces banks to transform into a flexible, agile organisation, capable of quickly adopting to market developments. How then can banks successfully engage in a digital transformation? In this blog we describe the four steps to follow for a successful digital banking transformation. Read more

Key success factors for an effective digital transformation

While digital-native challenger banks are increasingly maturing and bigtechs are expanding rapidly into financial services, traditional banks face the risk of slow but steady deterioration of their financial performance. However, with the right strategy, now it is the perfect moment for mid-sized banks to become leaders instead of laggers. Read more

The Rise and Fall of Wirecard

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

How Challenger Banks can get 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

Why challenger banks struggle with profitability

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

Why the Netherlands is 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

How 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

Why it's quiet on the PSD2 front

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

What is 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

Why Fintech startups and banks can build a potential 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