This Week in Fintech ending 25 September 2020

This week our experts brought you the following insights based on their experience as investors, entrepreneurs & executives.

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Your Editor is Bernard Lunn. He is also the CEO of Daily Fintech and author of The Blockchain Economy and occasional opinion columnist.

Monday Ilias Hatzis our Greece-based crypto entrepreneur (Founder & CEO at Mercato Blockchain Corporation AG and Weekly Columnist at Daily Fintech) @iliashatzis wrote The State of Defi: Is it the future of finance or just another bubble?

There’s no doubt that there has been a lot of innovation and opportunity in the DeFi ecosystem. In the three months since the launch of COMP, the growth in the space has been phenomenal. We’ve seen an endless stream of farms, forks, crashes and heists. There has been a yield-farming frenzy, with often funny sounding meme-coins and returns of 1,000%, even 100,000%. The total value locked on Ethereum DeFi has exploded again. Today’s data from DeFi Pulse puts it at $8 billion. While some of this growth is coming from asset appreciation, we are also seeing organic growth with new investors swarming to Defi, increasing the amount of collateral and liquidity supplied. However, the real story lies beyond the numbers. In a few months, DeFi became the world’s biggest and most active open financial laboratory. DeFi is the idea that cryptocurrency technology can be used to offer transparency and recreate traditional financial instruments such as loans and insurance. Some think that DeFi, in its current state, is destined to fail. Like the ICO boom of 2017, DeFi plays to our desire to get rich fast without any responsibilities.

Editor note: Defi aims to fix a broken legacy finance system, but needs to do some growing up first to fill those shoes.

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Tuesday Efi Pylarinou @efipm our Swiss-based Fintech Adviser,  founder of Efi Pylarinou Advisory and a Fintech/Blockchain influencer – No.3 influencer in the finance sector by Refinitiv Global Social Media 2019 wrote Stripe The Developer First Payment Unicorn.

Stripe is one of the most well-funded private Fintechs. With a $36billion unicorn valuation in a sector that is in growth mode, it seems unstoppable. Global e-commerce is currently estimated to be a $4trillion sector with huge upside potential, as it currently accounts for only 8% of total commerce (eMarketer stats reported by CB insights). Of course, there is incumbent and Fintech fierce competition that cannot be ignored. Think Paypal, Square, Brex, Marqeta, Google,… etc.

Editor note: Stripe is a simple idea with brilliant execution. Biz dev by code is the future.

Bernard Lunn, CEO of Daily Fintech and author of The Blockchain Economy wrote:Interview with Helie d’Hautefort about adoption trends for CBDC (Central Bank Digital Currency) in  Switzerland and globally.

Inspired by Ilias’s post entitled Switzerland Is Calling, I spoke with Helie d’Hautefort, Founder of  Reserve Currency Solutions, about the possibility of a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) in Switzerland and likely adoption trends for CBDC.

Central Bank Digital Currencies sit at the intersection of Legacy Finance and Cryptocurrencies. In that guise they get little love from people who are firmly in one camp or another:

  • People in the Legacy Finance camp tend to look at anything that has any relation to Bitcoin, Blockchain and  Cryptocurrency with suspicion.
  • People in the Cryptocurrency camp look at anything coming out of Legacy Finance with suspicion.

Pragmatic entrepreneurs look for practical solutions that solve real problems. Those  entrepreneurs need to understand both Legacy Finance and Cryptocurrencies. Helie d’Hautefort really understands both worlds, which is why I wanted to talk to him about the trends driving Central Bank Digital Currency in Switzerland and elsewhere.

Editor note:Once one major country launches a CBDC, there is likely to a rush of followers, but it is hard to figure out which country will go first.

Wednesday Alan Scott Managing Director EMEA at 24 Exchange @Alan_SmartMoney wrote Stablecoin News for the week ending Wednesday 23 September 2020.

This weekly snapshot is the news that matters in the Stablecoin market.

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Thursday

Rintu Patnaik, an Insurtech expert based in India, wrote:A Bustling Market and Its Many Crusaders

Virtual conferences in insurance have become regular fare this year. In tune with flavors of the season, conference hosts have been excelling in lining up a distinguished cast of speakers.

In the past week, I was privy to two well attended conferences, which were remarkable in the choice of stakeholder group representation. Along with incumbent and insurtech leaders, part of these thought-provoking exchanges were top regulatory, distributor, legal and fintech executives who enlightened attendees with their unique perspectives.

Editor note: This article offers some great insights into Insurtech in Asia and particularly the huge market in India.

Christian Dreyer @x3er, our Swiss based CFA who focusses on how XBRL changes our world wrote XBRL News: value add, LEI + ESEF = trust, financial executives’ radar

Editor note: This weekly snapshot is the news that matters in the XBRL market.

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Friday Howard Tolman, a well-known banker, technologist and entrepreneur in London. wrote: Alt Lending news for week ending 25th September 2020

Editor note: This weekly snapshot is the news that matters in the Alt Lending market.

Bernard Lunn, CEO of Daily Fintech and author of The Blockchain Economy wrote:3 corner fight between Security Tokens, NASDAQ/NYSE and Regional Exchanges

Going public” used to mean only one venue decision  – NASDAQ or NYSE?

Everything else was denigrated as a “regional exchange”.

In the past that tended to mean a lower valuation, as you were restricted to only local investors. Or you needed sophisticated investors using tools that could normalise valuations into a single reference currency.

That was yesterday’s story. As we are now 20 years into the Asian century and with America and China in something like a cold war, the trend is towards Chinese companies listing in Shanghai or Hong Kong or maybe in Dubai to access oil wealth.

Editor note: Jurisdictional and venue listing competition will be great for both entrepreneurs and investors, the two key players.

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