Philadelphia was not on my radar screen until regular reader Steve Weiner reached out to tell me about Wharton FinTech, the
“first student-led initiative dedicated to promoting ideas, innovation and investment in FinTech”.
I think this is significant for 3 reasons:
- If you want one word to explain Silicon Valley success it is – Stanford. The wonderful thing about University/College is lots of bright people with time to think (and code).
- Students are Millenials and their changed attitudes explains a lot of of the traction that Fintech ventures are getting.
- An earlier generation of Wharton grads opted straight for the big banks on Wall Street. Look on the Resume of a superstar quant or i-banker and you often saw Wharton. A Fintech career now looks attractive in comparison.
Philadelphia may not rank high when you look at HQ of top Fintech ventures, but many were started by Philadelphia locals, such as:
- Motif Investing (reviewed here), founded by Hardeep Walia (a Wharton MBA)
- Venmo (acquired by Braintree), co-founded by two University of Pennslvania students.
- CommonBond, co-founded by two Wharton MBA students and one Penn Law student.