Expert Urges Banks to Collaborate with FinTech Players

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Emma Okonji

Following the imminent technology disruption from financial technology players that will likely hit the financial sector, an expert in the financial technology space has urged banks and other financial institutions to form closer collaboration with financial technology (FinTech) players in order to drive financial inclusion in the sector.

The basis for this concern is stemmed from the global best practices where Fintech has become an extremely fast-growing industry worldwide. Its growth has enabled banks in Europe and the US to innovate and develop products to suit customers’ lifestyles.

According to the Managing DIrector/CEO of eMaginations, and organiser of Ennovators Breakfast Series [EBS], Sola Fanawopo, Nigeria is not an exception in the FinTech upsurge. He said the global investment in FinTech is reported to have reached as high as $80 billion between 2010 and 2016.

“For some time after the global and local financial crisis, traditional banks have laid emphasis on regaining customers’ trust. I am happy that banks have realised the potential of FinTech and are now slowly joining the startups in the race,” he said.

He explained that in large part, FinTech firms are becoming ‘disruptors’ for good, and that the secret to maintaining the banking industry is to nurture the startups through which new technology is birthed. To grow the banking industry, he asked, “Should banks engage FinTechs for competitive advantage, should banks build, partners or acquire FinTechs?”
According to him, bank chiefs and FinTech founders would join other speakers in Lagos for EBS in March to examine how banks and FinTech should relate.

“This edition of EBS will examine if the banks and FinTechs are friends or foes,” he said.
Fanawopo said EBS now in its seventh year is a quarterly cerebral breakfast event conceived to bring the Dreamers, Drivers, and Doers (3D) of technology business in ICT industry across Africa together with the objective of sharing key information that would promote business, impact lives, and birth new business relationships.