Are you a “born global” fintech looking to take on the world? Or maybe you’ve already expanded elsewhere and want to take Europe’s biggest market by storm? Or you’re a German company looking to take the next steps abroad and conquer the rest of Europe? If any of these apply to you, it’s a good idea to look before you leap – and that’s exactly what FinForward is for. This full day conference is at the heart of Germany’s largest fintech event, Fintech Week. Gain inspiration, discuss the latest developments in international fintech and keep in touch with the European fintech community from Germany and beyond. What are you waiting for?
Meet the experts speaking at FinForward 2019. More speakers coming soon.
Valdis Bergs is the CEO of MobillyTX – an advanced GovTech solution that helps state and municipal institutions to provide indirect social benefits to citizens. Under his supervision, MobillyTX has successfully developed a highly efficient welfare management system. It is transparent, fully automated, completely protected from any kind of fraud, and quickly prevents leakage of any data. Valdis is Head of the Finance sector committee at the Latvian Chamber of Commerce and Industry. He holds master’s degree in law from University of Latvia.
Frank Stefan Jorga completed his studies in business administration as well as both legal state examinations (admitted to the bar). His key areas of expertise are digitisation, strategic business areas, international collection & payment, risk management and market establishment of new online financial products. After a successful start-up phase in 2011 as a founder and main shareholder of WebID Solutions GmbH, Frank S. Jorga has also been Co-CEO since 2014, responsible for the strategic product and company orientation as well as the worldwide expansion of the WebID Group.
Delia König is Managing Director of the Identity Unit at solarisBank, the tech company with a banking license. She manages and oversees the business unit that has built a platform comprising cutting-edge customer identification solutions for fintech, banks and other digital companies looking to offer a smooth onboarding process for their customers.
She previously worked as an IT consultant for Germany’s largest financial services-focused consultancy, zeb, and gained experience as a Product Manager and entrepreneur. Delia studied Information Systems at the University of Münster and holds a Master’s degree in Digital Banking from Stevens Institute of Technology.
Frank Wunderlich works as an Associate Director and Partner at the consulting firm Arkwright Consulting. For over 20 years he has been advising top management of banks, payment service providers and technology companies. Main topics are strategy development and implementation, improvement of results, design of operating models as well as partnerships and digitization. Here his main focus is how onboarding processes can be streamlined with help of eIDs throughout Europe. He graduated in industrial engineering and lives in the “world's first cashless society” – Sweden.
Vikor Evchatov is the General Manager of DEinternational in Saint Petersburg. DEinternational provides B2B-services for german and other european companies by their entry into Russian markets. Viktor Evchatov is experienced in client support in german consulting companies using his legal degree and background. His skills include Business Development, Key Account Management, Negotiations, Customer Service, Team Management, Business Process Improvement, Project Management, B2B Sales, Legal Support, Financial Proposal Preparation, Client Relationship Management and Business Consulting.
Paul Jozefak is currently in the process of building his newest startup: Receeve GmbH, the first truly digital debt servicing platform. With this platform, he and his team aim to completely disrupt the collections industry and target it with a tech-first approach.
With his co-founder, Paul launched Liquid Labs at the beginning of 2012.From 2016 to 2018, he ran ODGS, the parent company of Liquid Labs, responsible for building new businesses for the Otto Group, driving innovation and managing a broad portfolio of technology companies.
Sabine holds a degree in Business Economics and has over 20 years of experience in the financial sector. She is a consultant at Arkwright, a management consultancy with Scandinavian roots and strong expertise in the financial sector and the payments industry. Previously, Sabine worked for 18 years in the Sparkassen organization, most recently as a division manager for corporate and organizational development. Apart from work, Sabine König is enthusiastic about travelling and experiencing other cultures, the development of payment behavior around the world is both her professional and her personal field of interest.
Dr. Anna Izzo-Wagner is a partner at Taylor Wessing in Frankfurt and specializes in banking and investment regulatory law as well as in compliance. She advises domestic and foreign clients of the financial services industry in the German legal environment - both in the founding and licensing process of institutions as well as in operational business. A particular focus of her legal consulting is the introduction and sale of new (banking) products and the support of digitisation projects in institutes as well as in fintech companies.
Jana Koch is Head of Business Development & Innovation Management at comdirect bank AG. Previously, as Head of the comdirect Start-Up Garage, she was responsible for the screening of FinTechs and the respective collaboration. She is involved in the inititive finanz-heldinnen and encourages others to take finances into their own hands. Jana Koch completed her international business studies with a focus on strategy and innovation at Maastricht University.
John Erik Setsaas is VP of Identity and Innovation at Signicat. With over 20 years’ experience in identity—and over 30 years in software product development - John Erik is a pioneer in the identity space. Before joining Signicat, John Erik was Chief Development Architect for SAP Identity Management and taught ecommerce, identity services and security at Buskerud University College in Norway. He is also a board member of the EEMA, Europe’s leading digital identity think tank, and has received the EEMA Lifetime Achievement Award.
Find out what we’ll be talking about at FinForward. Topics are subject to change. Speakers and a detailed scheduled will be added later.
For many years, central banks have had instruments at their disposal allowing them to control the economy. Being able to set interest rates and control the supply of money gives them the power to help economies through difficult times and stop them overheating. But now, alternative methods of payment could take these instruments out of their hands. The privacy and decentral nature of cryptocurrencies put them out of central banks’ reach, facilitating money laundering and making enforcement of regulation more difficult. But on top of that, they blunten the central banks’ tools to react in a crisis. As if that weren’t bad enough, Libra threatens to introduce a universal international currency that could make national currencies obsolete.
Following the 2008 financial crisis, banks were seen as a brake on progress and in need of opening up. Enter PSD2 and open banking. But does PSD2 run the risk of making banking services mere commodities for startups to build on? Is it unfair for GAFAs and startups to have a back door into banks via API but not the other way round? Banks are afraid of what the future holds: but should they be more afraid of missing the opportunities to innovate?
Big banks and insurers know they need to keep up with the agile innovators. They know they need to update their legacy systems, and use technology to deliver customer value instead of making their lives difficult. They don’t need telling that whoever wins the battle for talented, creative, tech-savvy employees will prevail. So it’s no wonder that existing employees, many of whom have loyally served their employers for decades, are getting fidgety. Their livelihoods are at stake and until recently, they thought they could look forward to a comfortable retirement. How do we deal with these employees, taking their fears seriously – while at the same time paying attention to those who are afraid that Germany will drift ever further behind if we don’t keep up with the pace of innovation? Is it possible for people nearing the end of their career to adopt a new customer-centric mindset?
While the Nordic companies rapidly do away with cash, just a few miles south the adoption of card payment is years behind. What is it about German customers that make many of them reluctant to succumb to the temptations of round-the-clock banking, easy financial management and convenient identification? Are the Germans irrationally afraid, or are their fears understandable? How do we move forward, finding solutions that the majority of people are happy with? And does Germany’s reticence make it a less attractive market to invest in? Or is this an opportunity for businesses that can win German customers’ trust?
It could be said that a regulator’s job is to prevent nightmares while still allowing dreams to come true. What fears specifically drive German regulatory practices? How does this affect the attractiveness of Germany as a market? Is Germany likely to follow the examples of places like London and Lithuania in starting a sandbox for new business models to be tested in? How can we ensure that we fuel European innovation, rather than simply regulating imports from the US and China? Will Libra prompt a harmonisation of international regulations by forcing a joint response from national regulators?
Several Hamburg startups have expanded to the USA. Why did they choose to break America? What is different there? And what have they learned about Germany as a result? Share in their experience and ask your questions.
Listen to the experiences of several startups who have gone international. In smaller states, going global is not a choice but a must in order to access a large enough market. But in some countries, such as Germany, that is not the case. Are German companies at a disadvantage because they don’t think globally from the off? Or are they lucky to have a large enough market that they know well and can serve perfectly?
Verifying a customer’s identity is a the core of a bank’s day-to-day business. Facial recognition and other biometric procedures mean there are more technical solutions to ensuring somebody is who they claim to be. But differing regulations in different jurisdictions are a headache for fintechs looking to roll out in other countries. What are the differences between European markets, and is there hope of harmonisation on the horizon?
Despite the proliferation of digital technology, many people around the world are cut off from banking. This includes people moving to unfamiliar countries, who face offputting bureaucracy and people sending remittances back home to support their families but facing high charges for doing so. What are the challenges to opening up banking to everyone, what solutions already exist, and what hope is there for the future? And is Libra the solution to everything?
The promise of PSD2 was to open up banking through APIs and let a thousand flowers bloom. Where have we got so far? Some seem to be embracing the emerging platform economy: putting your best foot forward in the form of your core product and pulling in the rest from elsewhere. Is there a race to be the first killer app? The Amazon of finance? Or will payment and finance play a backstage role in future?
Tickets for this year's FinForward are now available.
Where to find us and how to contact the team