‘Magic is always in the air at Money20/20’, according to the organization’s President, Tracey Davies. We couldn’t agree more. It is the largest Fintech event in Europe, and attended by an incredible range of talent, from the stalwarts of the industry, to start-ups trying to break through.
The Rai in Amsterdam was home to the 4th annual Money20/20 Europe— 3 days packed full of insightful keynote and panels, and networking. As a flagship event for AEVI, we most enjoyed the following topics:
1. Tailored experiences and invisible payments
Enhancing the customer experience using data was a running theme at Money20/20 this year, both in banking and acquiring.
In Retail Banking, the spotlight was on incumbent and challenger banks’ focus on front-end experiences and implementation of functionality that people want to help manage their personal finances.
Yet, Henry Vilar, reporting for Banking Technology states in a Day 3 recap of the show that a pervasive problem in the banking industry “is the obsession of certain banks to attempt to deliver products regardless of the user’s needs.” The same applies currently in the acquiring industry, where standardized offers are provided to every merchant, no matter what type. Merchant solution providers need to understand the behavior and priorities of today’s consumers, which have also shaped the needs of small to medium-sized merchants.
The goal should be to offer the most convenient products and services that reflect consumer behavior, integrating payments within their lifestyle. Payment that is a seamless aspect of other functions and processes is what customers want.
As we have seen in past editions of Money20/20, financial institutions have settled on 3 strategies on how to bring and execute innovation:
- Mergers and acquisitions: They can decide to acquire companies and own the distribution chain to provide an end-to-end value chain that tries to capture their customers in a proprietary cycle.
- In-house: They can decide to build something from the ground up
- Strategic partnerships: selecting partners that can enhance their core offerings
Whichever approach they choose, their goal should be to achieve a level of flexibility and adaptability to cater to a customer’s needs. At AEVI, we believe the best strategy lays in leveraging an open platform that puts at one’s fingertips the services of the past, of the present and of the future.
2. Transformation: the role of open platforms
Partnership mean integration. Cutting the integration process is the role of an open platform, as Lindsey Argalas, Chief Digital & Innovation Officer, Santander, fairly pointed out. It is the role of the platform to ensure that no extra integration is needed between different parties on that platform.
An open platform must offer seamless interaction between services, so that different players can access it effortlessly. The platform must be built with all users in mind—consumers, merchants, and developers—and ensure technology is easy to use and interact with.
Another great keynote was that of PayPal’s Peggy Alford, who talked about the company’s latest developments including: the PayPal commerce platform. This is designed for small retailers “in order to compete in this world increasingly global, mobile and digital, retailers need to master technology and data analytics and this set of skills can be out of reach for them.”
There is an opportunity for those that enable small businesses to go from local to global, from offline to online, to push power back to the edges and to put merchants back in control of their destiny.
This requires some new thinking from the merchant solution providers about how they can best help merchants.
3. Solving the challenges of small to medium merchants
Local and global, online and offline are not separate worlds, technology is blurring the boundaries. Intertwined, they offer benefits that fit the needs and preferences of today’s consumer. Nicky Koopman, our SVP of Content and Value-Added Services, discussed three retail conundrums during her panel moderated by Jordan McKee, 451 Research.
- The store is dead, long live the store: The conflicting narrative that physical stores are declining in relevance, while simultaneously the online to offline retail phenomenon is taking off.
- The usability vs. security balancing act: Customers want both strong security and exceptional usability in digital commerce experiences, which are inherently in opposition
- Conflicting demands for personalization and privacy: Customers want immersive, contextual experiences but at the same time their demands for privacy and data protection are increasing.
To us, the store lives on. Physical retail is not dead and is not declining in relevance. It may seem like it at times, but that is due to the fact that eCommerce is growing so rapidly and many innovations are coming from the digital side, so less attention is paid to in-store retail.
Retail is changing……or better evolving. Back in the 1990s when the first malls opened outside of city centers, the decline of main street shopping seemed evident. But the reality is that it is evolving and as with all evolutions those who can adapt will win while those who are not will eventually go out of business.
The retail sector needs to be empowered to create interesting, immersive and engaging experiences for on-the-go consumers whose expectations continue to be influenced by their online activities.
What is really exciting for us as a company is that through smart POS and the use of apps small and medium-sized businesses now have ready access to new services and processes through a device that bridges the digital and the physical world at a fraction of the price that would have had to pay just 5 years ago.
The role of acquirers is evolving from solely that of a payment provider into an advisory role, providing the tools and guidance for their merchants to grow and thrive in the digital age. As there is not one-size fits all solution, the challenges is to pull together solutions that will be relevant to certain merchant types. For this they need to access to a pool of solutions that can be bundled together and work seamlessly so they can be delivered this to their merchants as an out-of-the-box, integrated solutions.
Watch the recording of the panel in the below video:
We are proud to have announced a collaboration with a new hardware provider, reflecting our vision to provide choice and flexibility to acquirers to create varied solutions that are right for their customers.
AEVI partnership with Ingenico
We had the pleasure of announcing our new partnership with Ingenico:
“AEVI greatly increases its reach through Ingenico’s leadership in the payments industry” said Peter Spee, AEVI Vice President of Strategy and Corporate Development. “This will encourage next-generation acquirers to leverage the AEVI App Marketplace to spur merchant innovation and improve the consumer payment experience.”
The fun side
As always, we like to have a little treat for our fintech friends and this year we were proud to be handing out some reusable coffee cups as we continue to encourage merchant solution providers to reduce, reuse, recycle:
- Reduce merchant attrition
- Reuse our brilliant app partners
- Recycle ideas to best fit your client (it isn’t one-size-fits-all)
Top 3 swags at Money20/20 Europe
- AEVI reusable Coffee Cups (of course…)
- Power-bank for the upcoming festival season
- Socks – this year it was all about socks …. Sarah even collected 3 different ones 😀
A huge thank you to everyone who came to talk to us over the course of the 3 days, including the teams from Fintech Finance, Finextra, PCM Magazine, The Paypers, The Fintech Times and Payments Journal, and of course to Money20/20.
There are just 4 months to go until Money20/20 Vegas and we can’t wait, but there are many opportunities to speak to AEVI before then. Take a look at the other events we’re attending here – you can even already book a meeting with us in Vegas! Just click here.